June 9, 2014

Genealogical Evidence, Is your Ancestor Really Your Ancestor?
Last Names of Nuevo Leon

Genealogical Evidence is vital and I hope that as you continue or start searching for your Mexican Ancestors that you do document every and each person that you add to your family tree. When I started I was just a name collector. That is right a “Name Collector” that is what genealogist call people that their only focus is collecting names. That was several years ago, and my family tree used to have close to 20,000 names.

My information would come from books, internet, and other peoples family trees. I was Ok with this and if you are a name collector that is fine with me but if anyone asks you to prove why you claim an ancestor to be yours how will you prove it.

This happened to me. I was asked about a particular ancestor and could not prove that he was my ancestor. Up until that point I had no citations as to even mention where I had gotten my information from. It was that day that I decided to restart my family tree and not add anyone to my tree without a citation or original document. I started with my self and then worked my way back. Nowadays I can trace many of my ancestors back to the 1500’s and provide copies of original documents to prove my ancestry.

If at this point you are not citing your sources and or trying to obtain documents I highly recommend that you start doing it. Your research will take new life. You will also find more information about your ancestors than just dates and places.

To help you learn a bit more I recently found a PDF document made from a slideshow that Rosalinda M. Ruiz prepared about Genealogical Evidence. She does a great job of explaining it.

The front page of “Genealogical Evidence”:

View or Download PDF Document on Genealogical Evidence:

Don’t be scared about citing your information, you will be thankful later when you revisit a particular ancestor and you are able to retrace your steps as to why you decided to add them to your tree.

Here are some resources for citing:

Even if you do not use the above-mentioned formats just make sure to include. The name of the author, name of book or website, internet address, and or anything that will help readers or your descendants locate the source where you obtained your information.

Any questions about citing let me know in the comments below.

Here is Another Great Article on This Topic

Is it Important to Cite Your Genealogy Sources?

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About the author 

Moises Garza

I have doing my family genealogy since 1998. I am also the creator of this blog Mexican Genealogy, and my personal blog We Are Cousins. To always be up to date with both of these sites follow me on facebook. To contact me or book me for a presentation, buy my books, and or learn more about me visit my personal website at www.moisesgarza.com.

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  1. All I see when I click on the download PDF link for Rosalinda Ruiz’s Genealogical Evidence is a black screen and a green bar at the top. I am very interested in how to format the citations because I only want to do this once. Can you just email a copy of the pdf? Looking forward to meeting you at the conference in Austin, Moises!

    1. I think it is no longer available. She is a member of our Mexican Genealogy group on facebook. Try to contact her. On google you can also search MLA and or APA Styles cheat sheets to see how to format citations properly.

  2. I have done that and it was because I had lost a record and forgot to log in where I found it. Now I make note of where record was found I.e. church name year and page it was found. Now I can go back and find it again if the need arises.
    The other thing is that I started making notes of where I got photo, lost the list and now it’s hard to recall who gave me the photo.

  3. I’ve been stuck for almost 6 years on my 3x great grandfather who was said to have lived 118 years and worked for Richard King of the King Ranch. His name was Faustino Villa de Tovar and I have an inkling of who his parents were BUT I don’t have any birth, christening, marriage or death records! All I have to go on are a mish mash of censuses and 2 women who share the same first name BUT different last names. Juana Sains, Saenz or Sainz and Juana Capristran. I found that in the 1880 census they had 2 children but only 1 surviving who is my 2x great grandfather, Juan Villa. It’s making me crazy and I have restarted my family tree three times to get it but I can’t get it. What do you suggest???

    1. What I suggest is that you give it a break. Let it be for the time being and focus on other lines. Meanwhile, read books about the King Ranch and its Kineños. See if any mention him since he lived that long and workers used to live in their property. I think the ranch has a museum and you may consider getting a hold of the archivist there.

      1. Talk to David trevino there is alot of information on Faustino villa de tovar out there. Also look under just Faustino villa and king ranch

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