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Archiver > APG > 2005-08 > 1123283488

From: Elizabeth Whitaker <>
Subject: Re: [APG] Literature search for CG application
Date: Fri, 05 Aug 2005 19:11:28 -0400
References: <200508050308.j7538m2M007041@lists2.rootsweb.com><42F38AA9.2060501@comcast.net><020701c59a0f$642a06f0$6401a8c0@richard2kgrcz4>
In-Reply-To: <020701c59a0f$642a06f0$6401a8c0@richard2kgrcz4>

At 06:45 PM 8/5/2005, Richard Pence wrote:
>I recall from my graduate student days that the almost required first step
>in thesis presentation was an extensive "review of the literature." As I
>recall, the reasons for this were at least twofold. First, so you wouldn't
>have to repeat work already done and, second, to provide you with additional
>background in your subject matter and potential clues for additional or
>better focused research.

Yes, it's still a required starting point, at the least. In my own case, in
writing about the Lebanese in South Carolina, my literature search
verified that I was moving into nearly-untravelled territory as the
only "published" material I've found dealing with Carolina Lebanese
is a dissertation from ten years ago, from the other major state university
here, and it also deals with another immigrant group.

>I have been working too long (some things never seem to have an end) on a
>book which will contain information on the PENCE descendants of my immigrant
>5th great grandfather and the four sons who are believed to have accompanied

I am interested in publishing some of my work on my families, but I've
been hesitant about doing it because most of the material I have
is from other people. I have found it can take a combination of
luck (serendipity) and hard work to even find other people who have
done work on a line or a part of a line.

In most of these cases, this work from other people consists of
names, birth and/or death dates, sometimes places of one or both.
Though I have found an occasional omission (such as a "forgotten"
third wife and her set of kids), in most cases I find myself correcting
factual errors about historical context and generally fleshing out
the people.

Most of the work I've used has been carefully done, one set by
three people, one of whom was a professional librarian, but
I spent a lot of time trying to unravel reality from fantasy in
an early 20th century concoction commissioned by a now-deceased
relative. (I've learned a lot since the last time I wrestled with that:
now, I need to get my hands on another copy, and it's been hard
to do so!)

>Further (since I am neither wealthy or doing this for certification), I
>don't intend to send away for birth, marriage and death records for every
>individual. If there are inconsistancies or if family members today
>disagree, then I will do the necessary follow-up. But if the families as
>given are shown to be accurate in census records, these will usually be the
>only verification. I consider this a matter of necessity (as well as a
>reasonable approach), since there are over 1,000 people in this book - and I

Since most of my lines are from the South, I don't need to worry about
birth and death records. (We got started somewhat late on ones kept by
the government, which makes for years and decades of genealogical

Elizabeth Whitaker

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