What is the convention for people with no known information
I am asking this question in relation to profile G32S-LPN, seeking a broader understanding of how to handle similar situations.
No facts are known about this person - their first and last name are unknown (listed surname is husband's surname), and their date of birth/location is estimated. This person's existence is inferred from the existence of their child, but without any facts, should there even be a profile?
Also, a contributor has stated the convention is to list the spouse's surname if the individual's surname is unknown. Is this correct, and does it apply to cases like this individual?
Julia Szent-Györgyi ✭✭✭✭✭
I agree that this type of parent profile shouldn't really be entered. There's already a father, and that's enough to connect the siblings of Marion, if any are found, so this sort of no-added-data-whatsoever profile serves no purpose beyond annoying people like you and me. Yes, we know she existed, but we can say that about her parents, too, and their parents, and so forth and so on. There needs to be a line, and I think this is past it.1
I know you're asking about a specific profile, but I'd like to make a general point. There are occasions when this is necessary.
If I'm working with a family in a census and, for example, the brother of the husband/father is listed as a visitor. In order to create that person in the tree, as a brother, I must first create a parent. Even if I know nothing about them.
If such a person is going to be created then surely, "Mrs Smith, born about 1800 in Texas." in much better than, eg. "?" There have been numerous posts/complaints about that practice.1
Certainly agree it makes sense to link two siblings by creating placeholder parent profiles than to leave the sibling relationship unlinked.
I don't know if estimating dates and locations is better or worse than leaving unknown details blank. I would expect the only thing anyone could really attest to is that she was born before her daughter, and resided in Scotland at the time of her daughter's birth. Guessing she was born in Scotland in a particular year may mislead another researcher, whereas an entirely missing date/location shows that information is not known.1
In those circumstances I’d agree. An estimate, identified as such, is one thing. A blind guess is another.0
There are cases where the parent is known and the children are a complete mystery. The 1900 US Fed census asked two questions about children, how many were born and how many are alive. The 1890 census is largely missing because of a fire, so for me (and many others, I presume) that creates the need for several children records to be created who have no information at all except surname. In first name I always put Unknown. The late 1800s is a time of sketchy reporting for births and deaths, so most of these unfortunate children will be known only to God and their deceased family.1