Wednesday, November 19, 2008

There Is No Way That Was Made In the 1700s...

Have you ever been online looking at a ton of websites searching for a picture of a particular gravestone? When you finally found a picture of a gravestone that had all of the right information on it, but the stone looks waaaaay too new to possibly be what you are looking for? happens. And no, you aren't going crazy. Often times, many genealogical societies will create a new grave marker or stone for a person who was influential to the area. Sometimes family members who are proud of their lineage will create a new grave marker for someone who either served their country in a war or who made a big difference in something.

If you notice something like this, don't sit there pulling your hair out in confusion...this is definitely something that happens.

This happened with me when I was researching an ancestor of mine named Julius Dugger. I was searching on Ancestry and knew I probably wouldn't get a picture of his grave stone because he died in the late 1700s to early 1800s (I can't think of the exact date off the top of my head). But I did the search anyway - and sure enough - there was the picture staring me straight in the face. Everything that I read on the stone only confirmed what I already knew...but I also knew that there was no way this stone was created in that time period. Well, a little more digging and sure enough, there was my answer: A genealogical society in the area had created it for him because of his influence in Carter and Johnson Counties, TN.

Having a new gravestone created for a gravestone that either no longer exists or is too hard to read is becoming more and more common. My only word of caution is to not take everything on that new grave marker as complete fact because the new grave marker was created long after the person died...and therefore, there is more room for mistake.