Wednesday, March 30, 2016

A Complaint, a Member Tree, and a Tarnished BSO

I can't help looking at my Ancestry Hints, but I rarely look at the Member Tree Hints.  So I as surprised today to find that someone has several more generations in the Mansley line in Lancashire than I have in my tree.  Cool - it's something to check out!

From the home page, I clicked on the "View People With Hints," and the "All Hints" page opened:

1)  I keep getting that message in the blue outline box.  It says:

"Our hint system is temporarily offline.  During this time, hint notifications may not appear and existing hints may be inaccessible.  We thank you for your patience while we work to resolve this issue."

I get this message every time I go to this "All Hints" page.  At all times of day and night.  I would be very frustrated if the statement was true.

I usually click the "Records" link and get the message again, then refresh the page, and the list of Record Hints usually comes up.  Sometimes it takes two or three refreshes, but it eventually works.

 If the Hints were inaccessible ten seconds ago, why are they now accessible?  Well, it probably has to do with server capacity and traffic volume or some highly technical term like that.  No matter - whiny complaint noted, I hope.

2)  Today, I actually scrolled through the "Member Trees" Hints and saw matches for my wife's ancestor, Alexander Whittle.  There were 13 trees that matched my tree:

I scrolled down and saw a tree of interest, and clicked on the tree name, and went to the "Family" tree view for Robert Mansley (1750-1802) and saw that this tree had one more Mansley generation than I have in my own tree:

This tree indicates that the parents of Thomas Mansley (1720-1768) were John Mansley (1687-1768) and Elizabeth Walmsley (1691-1743).   There were several more generations of ancestors for Elizabeth Walmsley.

I looked at the profile for John Mansley in this tree and saw that the marriage for John Mansley and Elizabeth Walmsley was in 1720, which at least matches the birth date of Thomas Mansley.  There was a source attached to the person in this tree, so I clicked on the source to see the detail:

Well, that's frustrating.  The attached source is for a marriage of James Mansley (not John!) and Elizabeth Walmsley on 11 April 1769, one year after John Mansley died, and 26 years after John's purported wife, Elizabeth Walmsley, died (at least according to the person profile data).

Now it may be that the parents of Thomas Mansley were John Mansley and Elizabeth Walmsley, and their birth and death and marriage dates may be correct, but at this time, I don't see any evidence that they married or had a son Thomas.  Too bad...

3)  This Family Tree match was worth investigating, but I am not going to add the information to my family tree database.  Oh well.  This was a shiny BSO (Bright Shiny Object), but I found it tarnished beyond believability, at least at this time.

I noted that the attached record above is from the "Lancashire, England, Church of England Marriages, 1754-1936."  I can't access that database because I don't have a World subscription on, but it looks very useful.  I did see Record Hints for the Whittle and Mansley people in my tree for this database and also the "Lancashire, England, Church of England Births and Baptisms, 1813-1911" database, which from the thumbnails, appear to have record images from the actual parish registers.  That's good!

I'll have to go to the FamilySearch Library and see what I can find in these databases.  I looked through these parish registers at the Family History Library several years ago for these families.


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Diane Gould Hall said...

Randy. I frequently look at the hints on my tree, for whomever I am currently researching. I have found that on the "new" Ancestry there are some very misleading hints. I see a marriage record hint for my great grandparents (for whom I have never located a marriage record) and I think "OH BOY!"
Only to open the hint and find out it is the marriage record for their son. Same thing I've found with some birth and death records.
I find these new hints to be time consuming and not useful. We never used to get these kinds of hints on the Classic (and in my opinion, much better) Ancestry.
Those hints belong on the person to whom the record belongs, not on the family members.
So many records - so many misleading clues - hope someday they fix all this.

Anonymous said...

I have observed that Ancestry now wants to connect family members to records that are NOT DIRECTLY ABOUT THEM in ways that make "source" connections confusing or misleading. I did obtain a World subscription for the moment (one of those special offers things) and a quick look at the actual records for your example shows the following: Witnesses for the 1769 marriage of James Mansley and Elizabeth Walmsley were Stephen Mansley and Robert Mansley. A record from May 1 in the same register shows the marriage of Jas. Mather (indexed as Matthew but I think Mather) and Ellin Walmsley, who signs the certificate of marriage as "Ellin Mather Late Walmsley." The witnesses are John Lom[illegible to me] and William Mansley. It is possible there are many of your wife's relatives in here, but you could go completely out of your mind trying to track them down. Sigh.

dritchhart said...

Randy: In the Lancashire, England, Church of England Marriages and Banns, 1754-1936 data base I did find the marriage of Elizabeth Walmsley and John Mansley on 11 April 1769 in the Parish of Walton-le-Dale, St Leonard, Lancashire, England. I also found in the same parish the burial date of Thomas Mansley on 15 Nov 1768. Obviously, Thomas probably wasn't
be the son of this Elizabeth and John, as he died before they were married. Sorry I couldn't have been of more help.