Surnames and Family Research Forum Archive
Using Discrepancy Charts
In Response To: Why so many mistakes? ()
Organize the Inconclusive with Discrepancy Charts
Discrepancy Charts Help You Evaluate Facts
Learn how to organize conflicting information and evaluate your primary and secondary sources.
If the data genealogists collected always agreed and was always consistent, many professional genealogists would be out of business. So would a few authors.
Discrepancies and inconsistencies are a matter of course in genealogical research, as is dealing with those inconsistencies.
In terms of consistency, genealogical data can fall into one of three categories:
1. Entirely consistent, every document providing the same date and place for each event, with no conflict between sources (the ideal);
2. Conflicting, but consistent enough to allow different researchers to reach the same conclusion;
3. Entirely inconsistent and inconclusive.