Tuesday, April 21, 2009
Blogging Prompt 15: The Death Certificate with No Name
List some vital signs. Talk about specific birth, marriage and death certificates. Topics may include misspelled names, fudged dates, other anomalies that stand out in your records.
When I learned that the South Carolina Death Record Collection on Ancestry had added digital images, I knew I had to make systematic use of this resource for my Moore and Lewis lines. In connection with my “Descendants of Samuel Moore of Greenville” project, I decided to go through all the certificates for Moores in Greenville; the search page for this particular record set has a county menu option, so I could just plug in “Greenville” and “Moore” and work on the list of records that would generate.
On of the results simply had “Moore.” I did not know whether or not this would be one of “my” Moores, but to be thorough, I checked it. There was nothing at all written in the section for the name of the deceased. However, an observant indexer must have noticed that the last name of the father listed for the deceased was “Moore,” so that was how it was indexed. In fact, listed as the father of the deceased was B. M. Moore, aka Bud Mathis Moore, the brother of my great-great grandfather William Spencer Moore. I saw that the informant was J. M. Blakely – this would be James Moore Blakely, the son of Franklin Blakely and Bud M. Moore’s daughter Susan Amanda. And, looking at the other information provided on the deceased, I could see that the deceased had been Susan Moore Blakely. Ordinarily she would have been indexed under “Blakely,” but the indexer was correct in choosing the father’s name, since the relationship of the informant to the deceased is not indicated. I submitted a correction to Ancestry, and it now shows up in the search results.
Carefully going through long lists of search results can be tiring, but I’ve learned through many experiences like this that it is worthwhile.