If I am unsure about the order of the first names (First - Middle), Should I do the (OR) thing? I am reviewing Wisconsin birth records.
If you post your batch code it will help someone to give you an appropriate answer. The code is the group of letters and numbers at the end of the batch title. XXXX-XXX
Normally you would use the or to indicate an alias or alternate name. If this is the case then it would be appropriate. The guideline states:
If alias names were included on a document, or if an individual's name was listed with various spellings on the document, include all variants, separating each with the word Or. For example, if a name was written as "Georgios (George), George Broski, George Browzowski, or George Brzozowski," index the name fields as follows:
As you often see written here, and as Larry has suggested, for the most accurate answer, please post the batch code.
But from what you describe, it does not sound like an OR situation. If you can’t decide which is the fist name/ initial, I would just TWYS - type what you see - in the order written on the document, and let the Researchers figure it out.
Doing this is also in the spirit of the following excerpts from the General Indexing Guidelines on Given Names.
• Type names as they were written. Do not correct misspellings or expand abbreviations unless directed otherwise in the project instructions.
• If you cannot determine whether a name is a given name or a surname, type it in the Given Names field.
It did not feel right to do ( OR ).
I think you're correct not to do OR. Just TWYS if you can't figure out the order.