I had two things happen yesterday that struck me. First, I came across our family picture of one of our ancestors (b. 1827’ish) in a family tree on Ancestry. According to Ancestry, that same picture appeared in 3 other family trees there. None of them credited nor sourced the picture. Given it has my aunt’s writing on it, I can say with some certainty that is indeed the picture I have in my possession. Not a huge thing, but it seems a tad rude to me. And of course, without documentation, how will any of them ever know where the original lives and judge whether my identification of the subject is correct?
Secondly, I thought I had found a cousin through Ancestry trees (yes, there’s a reason I don’t usually look at the tree results of a search), but it seems they have two of the same named individuals mixed up in their tree. Now, they have sourced in that a birth index and census from 1871 through 1901 have been supplied. I am quite certain they are for two different people.
Now, none of us is perfect of course. But it does make me wonder. I am all for sharing, that’s one of the most wonderful aspects of our genealogical community I think is it’s willingness to share and not hoard information. But what can I do if someone mistakingly tacks my tree information to a wrong person? And what should I do about that picture now floating about unsourced and uncredited? And perhaps more importantly, have I ever done the same to someone else’s research/pictures/information/tree? I hope not.
[If a google search ended you here and you can’t figure out why, try the Search bar at the bottom of the page for your term. Many topics and photos are in my archives.]