Saturday, November 16, 2013

Original Records

We have discussed compiled records in previous entry and we mentioned they can save us time and provide direction on our research. However, the genealogist will always go to the original records when available. Original records were written to document a memorable fact, for example:

Birth, marriage, death on Civil Records
Baptism, religious wedding and burial
Nobility Evidence to enter to Spanish Military Orders
Racial Purity Dossier (Expediente de Limpieza de Sangre) for becoming a member of the Armed Forces or the Inquisition
Wills, inheritance documents and dowries
Establishment of an entailed state (Majorat / Mayorazgo) and legal disputes related to it
Nobility Litigation (Pleitos de Hidalguia)
Noble Titles succession letters
Any other Notarial Records (as we have discussed in a previous entry).

For these original documents we pay special attention to the dates working with a wide searching scope, including a few years before and after the estimated date. Other than the dates the first information to search is about family relationships for example “tuvo por hijos…”

We reconstruct the whole family, including all brothers and sisters as different records may have additional information to lead to more ancestors.

Information that was not very relevant for the purpose of the original document may be valuable for the genealogist, for example the ancestor occupation, names of the witnesses, godparents, etc.