5 July 2021

Yesterday my sister called me and wanted to do some genealogy on our biological father’s side. Good start, talk to your relatives and see what they know. I looked at FamilySearch and saw that James Delbert Liftchild KHQL-1PS had some hints that needed to be evaluated.

First lesson – look at the hints carefully and evaluate if they are really a match. They are only hints. She looked at the first hint, New York, New York City Marriage Records, 1829-1904 and said, “1829, that’s too early so that’s not a match.” I pointed out it was 1829 through 1904 and told her to look at the record. It was a match.

Then we moved on to his daughter Doris Ruth Liftchild G9T5-JK5. There was a marriage record for her that looked like a match but we have her birth as 26 October 1901 and the marriage record said she was born around 1906. That made her 32, not the same age as her husband, James Collin Williams – 27. Think she lied? So my sister toyed with the idea of just attaching the source and then having someone else come along and say, “No! That’s not a match.” She didn’t feel good about it so we started doing some digging.

We clicked on Search Records FamilySearch and Ancestry. “Ancestry has more records,” she said. “Ancestry has a different search engine, it’s good to check both,” I answered. So we started looking at the results and discovered another sibling in the 1920 Census. Harry Liftchild, Jr. was born about 14 years after Doris. Because he was born in 1919, he would not be 110 years old today so my sister put him in as a living person and then we went looking for a death record which we found and added to his profile.

Then it all came together in the 1940 Census. Harry Liftchild age 21 and his wife are living with Doris Williams age 35 and J. Colin Williams age 35 as the brother and sister-in-law of J. Colin Williams. Birth years are around 1919 and 1905 which match the 1920 Census for Harry and the marriage record for Doris and James Collin Williams. Harry would have been James Collin’s brother-in-law. My sister was now confident that the marriage record was a match.

As we ended our session, I pointed out that she had done some real research, not just attaching hints. She felt pretty good about that.