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Resolving Conflicts on the FamilySearch Household Tree: What To Do When Issues Don’t Agree Acquire US

What do you do while you’re researching an ancestor on the FamilySearch Household Tree and also you run into conflicting info for a date, place, and even identification? You’ve a couple of selections: ignore the conflicts hoping another person will determine it out, randomly select what info to make use of, or do extra analysis and resolve the battle. I bumped into this problem when researching my second great-grandmother, Harriet (Huggett) Kelsey. I not too long ago wrote about Harriet’s adolescence in England primarily based on histories compiled by herself and her granddaughter, however I observed some points together with her report on the FamilySearch Household Tree. I made a decision to see if I might resolve these conflicts by researching and discovering extra sources.

Conflicting Beginning Years

The primary battle I observed was Harriet’s delivery 12 months. Her profile gave her delivery as “earlier than 3 August 1823” in Charlwood, Surrey, England, United Kingdom. Viewing the sources on her profile in FamilySearch I noticed that this was seemingly primarily based on an listed report of her christening on that day. Sadly, no picture was accessible to double-check the date.

Harriet herself wrote a letter to her grandchildren and acknowledged that she was born at Lovell Heath, Charwood Parish, England, on the sixth of June 1826. June sixth is sensible for a christening on August third, however the date is off by three years.

Lastly, Harriet’s gravestone provides her delivery as 6 June 1825 with the 6 June correlating with Harriet’s letter, however the 1825 giving yet one more 12 months for her delivery.

To resolve the battle, I wanted to view the unique christening report to confirm Harriet’s identification and her delivery 12 months.

Conflicting Names and Identities

Harriet was a triplet. One of many infants died at delivery, however the different was named Hester, and the women have been often known as the London twins due to their an identical seems.

Researchers typically change Hester’s title on her profile on FamilySearch to Esther as a result of most of the information do give that title.  Among the many papers I inherited from my mom was a Household Group File crammed out by Effie Kelsey, a granddaughter of Harriet. That report had a notice that reads: As a consequence of dropping of the “H” in Hester, she was often known as Esther after coming to Utah.

Evaluating the spelling for Hester’s sources on FamilySearch, I discovered the English information that title her Hester embrace her marriage report and the 1851 and 1861 England and Wales Census. The U.S. information that title her Esther embrace a ship manifest, pioneer overland information, and the 1870 -1900 U.S. Census enumerations.

Hester’s gravestone names her as “Hester,” as does a temple report for her. However, a historical past written by a granddaughter names her as Esther.

It could appear that each names are applicable, however with the data from the household group report, I settled on her delivery title of Hester and added this notice to her report on FamilySearch, so different researchers would know the supply of my info.

One other problem comes with an listed report for the christening of an “Esther Harriet Hugget” on 3 August 1823 in Charlwood, Surrey, England, inflicting confusion about who this report referred to – one feminine or two? Once more, it got here with no picture to examine. When the newly listed report appeared on FamilySearch, Hesters title was modified but once more to “Esther Harriet Huggett,” combining the 2 sister’s names.

It was time to seek for the unique report for the christening. I discovered it on the web site FindMyPast which makes a speciality of English information.

Baptisms solemnized within the parish of Charlewood, Surrey County
3 August 1823
Esther & Harriet Daughters of Thomas, Jane Huggett,
Abode: Charlwood
Occupation of father: Wheelwright
Ceremony by S Porter

The report settled the query of whether or not this was one feminine or two however, apparently, did give Hester the spelling of Esther. This once more might have been due to the dropping of the “h” and the clerk recorded it as Esther.

I created a new source for this baptism record, linking it to the picture on FindMyPast and including the supply quotation. I additionally put in an entire transcription within the notes and added a motive assertion clearly stating that these have been two separate daughters of Thomas and Jane Huggett.

Authentic supply added on FamilySearch for the baptisms of Hester and Harriet Huggett in1823

Resolving the Conflicts

Discovering the unique christening report resolved the battle with the delivery 12 months of Harriet and Hester. Though their information confirmed 1825 on each their headstones and Harriet gave 1826 as her delivery 12 months. Clearly, they have been born in 1823, as proven by the unique christening report that was created quickly after their delivery. Since Harriet was a secondary informant of her delivery, not being cognizant of the date, she was informed her birthday by her mom. June sixth was most likely celebrated as her delivery all through her life, and later in life, she confused the 12 months.

The 1841 census correlates with the delivery 12 months of 1823. On this census, Harriet lived in her older sister Eliza’s family, headed by Main Agate. The census additionally correlated the household historical past that Harriet made her residence together with her older sister, Eliza, and her husband.

1841 England and Wales Census, Harriet Huggett within the family of Main Agate, Croydon, Surrey, England


I added a motive assertion for the delivery date explaining my reasoning:

Harriet and Hester have been baptized on 3 August 1823, so their delivery would have occurred a couple of weeks prior. Harriet acknowledged in letters to her grandchildren that she was born on 6 June 1826, however her gravestone provides her delivery as 6 June 1825. It’s possible that the date of June sixth is appropriate and he or she was mistaken concerning the 12 months. Moreover, the 1841 census reveals Harriet as age 18 which correlates with a delivery 12 months of 1823.

Conflicts will at all times come up in our analysis, and as a substitute of ignoring them, we do our greatest to resolve them. Utilizing qualifiers corresponding to “seemingly” or “most likely” helps with our writing since one other report might seem that adjustments our conclusion.

On this case, I really feel assured that there have been two sisters, one named Harriet and one named Hester/Esther. They have been seemingly born on 6 June 1823 in Charlwood, Surrey, England. Hopefully, my motive statements and notes on their FamilySearch profiles will assist different researchers to grasp my reasoning.

Better of luck in all of your genealogical endeavors.


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