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Re: The Relative Value of the Sources
Posted by: Richard Alan McCool Date: August 21, 2001 at 08:16:04
In Reply to: Re: The Relative Value of the Sources by Van of 1585

Dear Van,

To be fair, there has been some rough language and unnecessary characterizations from both sides.

Be that as it may, when thinking about this entire thread in a more general way, this paragraph from my post under the subject line "Trying Again: The Relative Value of the Sources"
keeps coming back to me:

"RESEARCH PROCEDURES: ‘There are two methods of compiling ancestral
history; one is by ascendants and the other is by descendants. The end
results are quite different. A family history is a compilation of the
ascendants of one individual. A family genealogy is a compilation of
descendants of an immigrant ancestor or ancestors. . . . To do a family
history, one starts with oneself and works back (by ascent). . . .The
family genealogy starts with the immigrant ancestor, or ancestors. . .
.and traces down (by descent) . . . to the present generation." (Ref. 2,
p.138) [Williams, E.W. Know Your Ancestors: A Guide to Genealogical Research.
Rutland, VT.: Charles E. Tuttle Co., 1961]."

In the larger sense, I think the controversy revolves around the two different approaches to these Van Sic[k]len ancestors. Since you are a genealogist, you have a more global view of the family. This allows you to bring into focus certain elements and information regarding the subject family group that might not be readily apparent (nor readily available) to the family historian. But the two approaches are synergistic, or should be.

The major difference as I see it is that, sooner or later, the family historian will hit that proverbial brick wall and then must turn to the genealogist for the solutions–should that solution indeed exist. For the family historian in this case, the proposal that Maria Van Siclen Eastling is the daughter of Cornelius Van Siclen and Catherine Johnson cannot produce viable ancestry. Unless, of course, another couple of the same names can be found who actually had a daughter Maria, etc... .

Because your globalist view of the family amply demonstrates that the proposed parents did not have a daughter Maria, and since no other couple with these names are yet discovered, sooner or later the advocate of this proposal with have to seek after other parentage.

And because of your globalist view, you are in a position to provide the likely ancestry here. Though simple mathematics generated by the primary evidences surrounding the lives of Cornelius Van Sic[k]len and Catherine Johnson should alert the family historian in this case to the fact, still we have to allow that he actually does not realize that he has a brick wall to surmount. And, he does not realize yet that when he does get there, he will find himself fortunate that you have already removed that brick wall.

There is still some rubble that needs to be cleared away–as you yourself have acknowledged. Chief among these, I think, is that 1814 versus 1824 marriage date.

Richard


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