The Case of the Disappearing Daughters, Part 2

In Part 1 of this post, I described my search for the daughters of James M. Galt (1849-1939) and showed how the probate record of the girls’ maternal grandfather David West (1823-1898) provided key information about their married names and whereabouts, information that enabled me to trace all but...


The Case of the Disappearing Daughters, Part 1

Several years ago I developed a talk called “Grandpa’s Probate Solves the Case of the Disappearing Daughters,” based on what I learned from the probate records of David West (1823-1898).1 The talk illustrates several methodological principles relating to reasonably exhaustive research–researching as completely as possible the records of an...


Case Studies using Mitochondrial DNA

Finding female ancestors often challenges researchers! DNA–both autosomal and mitochondrial–is a powerful tool for identifying the often-hidden women in our family tree, and case studies–illustrations of how researchers have solved particular kinds of problems–help us learn how to use new methods and tools in our own research. Here is...