Genealogy Friday: New Records Constantly Appear

Wills can help unlock a family mystery
Wills can help unlock a family mystery

I’ve been sharing my struggle with breaking through a brick wall.

I finally found enough circumstantial evidence to prove who he was, but I had no definitive proof.

Not living in the area, I’d not been to check the records at the courthouse, although I probably should have.  However, I wasn’t really hopeful of finding anything if I’m honest.

Well, I was wrong. Ancestry is constantly scanning and adding new material.

One day I’m running my search on not really expecting anything new to appear.

I type in the name of his “theoretical” grandmother and up pops her will.  I can’t believe it.

I begin to read through it and discover that she outlived her daughter and son-in-law.  She names her living grandchildren by name.  By name!

There he is—listed by name and now I have his full name—Ariovistus.

Sometimes that needle in the haystack can be found
Sometimes that needle in the haystack can be found

This is such an unusual name that I know without a doubt it was him.

For years, I searched for John Davis—which is like looking for a needle in a haystack.  However, the information in the family Bible was CORRECT, but the information in his daughter’s obituary was WRONG.

I’d been using the wrong information for years.   Yet, it was all I had to go on.

I did a search in the area of the obituary index at the local library and found Ario.  So now I can’t wait to go and obtain his obituary.  I’m planning a trip very soon.   Again, this information wasn’t online a year or two ago.

While I urge searching more than just records online, this was one time when those records were very vital in breaking my brick wall.


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