SOURCES supply information. "What are you holding?" A question that is
sometimes used to determine the source. In the world of the Web this question
needs a bit of tweaking. The clerk's copy of a deed entered into a courthouse
record book, a photocopied, photographed, microfilmed, or scanned copy of
that deed are all considered original sources.
Unless a copy loses significant information, it is considered an original.
We cannot "hold" the database of grave markers that is on our
computer monitor unless we print it—yet, that is a source of
If we can derive information from an object—it is a source.
is a derivative source.
Sources are not equal, but all are cited.
INFORMATION is knowledge of a fact. The knowledge may or may
not be correct and it is rarely given to a person studying the past in
first-person form. The date on the tombstone was carved by a stone
mason who may have chiseled the date of death or the date of burial.
Perhaps he was looking at a copy of a death certificate as his source
of information. There are several questions that could be asked about
EVIDENCE provides grounds for belief that proves or disproves a conclusion. The professional genealogist must take widely scattered sources providing information, which, in turn, provides evidence. There are inherent biases in sources such as oral traditions or family records. We use the federal and state statutes to interpret the contents of legal documents.usions.
The weight that is placed on any individual piece of evidence is
an important part of the process of genealogical analysis.