The power of Discernment in Genealogy


 Thank you for whispering!

  We have a sign up at the Stake Library and encourages people - just like at a real Library -  to whisper - but here it is for a different reason.  Many times, when you are searching for Ancestors and providing you say a prayer first, when it comes down to one or two candidates for your relative, you can write down all the facts and then pray for the sure knowledge.  Those relatives want to be found.  They went through such hardships and did not have the luxuries that we enjoy today.  They do not wish to be forgotten.  Every time you learn more about your Heritage, I'm sure they smile because if they could tell you their story, they most certainly would do so!

Elder Richard D Scott wrote for his talk on Family History,
"This work is a spiritual work, a monumental effort of cooperation on both sides of the veil, where help is given in both directions. Anywhere you are in the world, with prayer, faith, determination, diligence, and some sacrifice, you can make a powerful contribution. Begin now. I promise you that the Lord will help you find a way. And it will make you feel wonderful." 1.

From Kim Crenshaw Sorenson:

"A few years ago, I found myself frequently in fervent prayer, pleading for blessings for myself and my family, blessings I knew we needed. I knew the blessings I sought were righteous desires, yet they did not come. Each time I prayed, the only impressions that came were urging me to do family history and temple work for my ancestors. The great irony was that one of the things I was seeking so fervently was more time. I felt overwhelmed with my life. I was the mother of four young children, I worked at least six hours a day on a home business, I had a demanding Church calling, and my husband traveled a lot on business and served in a student ward bishopric. Now the Lord was asking me to dedicate time and energy I didn’t think I had to family history work! It had never even crossed my mind that I should be doing my family history. I had felt that it was “not my season,” that it was something I would do later in life. But in kind persistence, the answer to every prayer was the same—to seek my ancestors and do their temple work. While family history work might not be expected of everyone in my circumstances, I felt sure the Lord wanted me to become involved in it." 2.

This is a great Video
 on the 
Power of Prayer and Genealogy

How do Dead Ends happen in Genealogy?

  The other night a friend came to our Library.  He had been trying to find information on his Grandmother's family for the longest time.  We said a prayer and within just short of an hour, we had so much information on her, her siblings, her mother and father.  It was so exciting and there were a few reasons why he had come to a dead end.

Her headstone said Lola Saunders

That was her name when she died.  Her married a second husband.
Her first married name was Lola Walker.
Not even that should go in the blank for last name.
If you do not know the last maiden name you should leave it blank - just Lola
By adding spouses, that denotes what her married name was, but she MUST be listed by her MAIDEN NAME

You know what you know. 
but...How do you know it is true?

...make a list of just what you have documentation for.
This is NOT what Great Aunt Agnes told you.  
You have a headstone with a birthdate and death date.
You know where she was buried.
Where did she die?
You know her first name.
Your know her first married name - so you know her Husband's name.
1) Look for a marriage license between Seth R Walker and Lola
2) Look for Census data for Seth Walker with a wife named Lola
3) An older woman was living with Seth and the children at some point - the census said she was the mother in law.
4) We looked for a marriage certificate and found that Seth R Walker married Lola Mudd
5)  N O W we can put a last name to Lola.

From there, the floodgates opened.  Look for subtle things in your tree that need to be trimmed and spruced up and your path to your ancestors will be so much more clear.

Here's the acid test.  Do you have the strength to delete everything that you do not have strong documentation for?  Only then will you be able to grow your tree with strong dependable roots.

Here's how people go wrong - President Dieter Uctdorf said it best, if a pilot leaves an airport and is off by 2 degrees, they will be off course by 500 miles.  Watch this video
this is the actual link


If you GUESS or use VERBAL clues this is what happens.

You will pull in data from the wrong people.  
You may have data from the right people
It gets all mixed up
then the Database starts sending you clues for more than one family


  1. Only use Census data, carefully jotting down the ages of the children and names.  
  2. Use a Census Matrix like this to make sure you are measuring data for data of same families and not settling for a probable. 
  3. Then document and save birth certificate, death certificates looking for information on the parents.
  4.  Social Security data, Marriage Licenses, Divorce decrees/
, Wills mentioning more than one person in the family.  Obituaries with documented family members.  
Someone asked me how I organize my data.

Everyone has a different way of organizing - I just thought I would show you how I keep things straight.

If you would like to use my Matrix that my husband and I created, we would love to share it with you  Directions on how to use the Template

Download the Template from my One Drive link at the bottom

Save it as your family Name

Add a Tab for Each leg of your family

In each Page copy the template and paste it into the page by selecting
the area (blank square) between Row 1 and Column A

This will highlight the cntire template - then click Control + C to copy it

Go to the next blank page with a family leg named as the tab
Go to the same  corner between Row 1 and Column A and click on
that blank square.
Now Paste it in there by holding down Control and then hold down V to Paste

Do this for Each leg of your Family Tree

Now Start Adding your names and Birth YEARS to the columns, the  formulas will
tell you how old they were at each census.

Next to Each Census Date in ROW 9 you can mouse over to tell you what you can expect to find for that Census.

The formulas are year of birth driven.  This means if you don't put a year of birth in to the C column, it will say the name of the census and that is all
Documenting their death dates - I see when they were last on the census then add the # of years to the death date and write in the next census cell.  If I know how they died, I put a comma and add the reason.  This way, if I see a correlation in causes it might be a tip for future generations to take care of genetic malfunctions from an early age.

So this is how I document why they won't be on the 1940 census
It shows the last one they were listed on and then
what happened and how

I color code my family so that it shows migration and there is a link from
the family as a child to the family as an adult

my children are listed below this
then their families are listed below that with each child linked with a color in both families.

These dates are really far into the future - the people below have not been marked
deceased so it shows how old they would be in 2020, 2030 and 2040 which is only important for the next generation.  These can be erased after you make a copy of the template

You never know where someone is going to start in this template.  You can hide columns, you can erase formulas if needed.  If you feel you erased one in error, for example,
perhaps you erased one below that 211.  go to the 211 and copy and paste straight down to the next cell.

If you see NEGATIVE numbers, the sheet will tell you that this person will not be born for 158 years from the 1820 census.  Once you establish

These are called absolute references so the formula is only good in that column for another cell in the same column.  You wouldn't copy a cell from column b to column D  - Only from Column D to D

H ere is a Link to my Template on One Drive
Down load it and input your family names and the years they were born.
See if you have the right census data already.  If you do, make an X next to 
your family member's name.!AjS2RGb0p-4PgUUEdG2gKlVmv8mp





Some fun tips, tricks and Family History Activities for you!

For our Monthly Newsletter 
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Rise to your Call
 is an Inspirational Video no matter 
what job you hold
 We hope you enjoy it!

Rise to your Call - LDS Video for Temple and Family History Consultants

President Eyring discusses the blessings you will receive when you seek to magnify your calling, no matter what it is in the Church.

"And so to everyone-- man or woman, girl or boy-- who has been called or who will yet be, I will give you my counsel.
First, you are called of God. The Lord knows you. He knows whom He would have serve in every position in his Church. He chose you. Your call has eternal consequences for others and for you. In the world to come, thousands may call your name blessed, even more than the people you serve here. They will be the ancestors and the descendants of those who chose eternal life because of something you said or did, or even what you were.
There will be times when you will feel overwhelmed. One of the ways you will be attacked is with a feeling that you are inadequate. But you have access to more than your natural capacities, and you do not work alone. The Lord will magnify what you say and what you do in the eyes of the people you serve. All He asks is that you give your best effort and your whole heart.
Do it cheerfully and with the prayer of faith. The Father and his beloved Son will send the Holy Ghost as your companion to guide you. Your efforts will be magnified in the lives of the people you serve, and you will know that you have seen the arm of God lifting those you serve for him. And lifting you."   ~ Henry B. Eyring

 a great Family History Website
 for your research
 This is a really wonderful site by a Mother and Daughter who seek to do Family History for others.

 I really want to do this with you! 
 Create your own
 Family History Activity Day
 - just by using this tool, it organizes every;thing for you.



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