My ultimate aim for all my research on the Unst Family Tree is to get it online on a webpage for all to see and peruse. I hope to be able to allow visitors to the website to upload photos and stories about their relatives to enhance the story told about each member of the tree beyond just statutory records and such.
However this idea does have possible downsides. What do you do if two different people have contradictory stories about a person? Do you only show one? How do you know which one is correct? (Answer – probably never). My solution to this issue will be to have these stories published, “as told by …”. That way all stories can be shown and the reader is aware of the source. None are considered absolute fact (as they are stories with little or no documentary evidence) and yet none are banned due to being incorrect (which cannot be proven either).
To illustrate this, I’ve made up the following example. By made up I mean that all the people in this illustration, the story tellers and the family tree person are all fictitious.
Clearly, these two stories are contradictory, but to omit them both because a single fact cannot be gleaned from their contradictory accounts would be to remove some interesting information about little Jessie. There is certainly an interesting story behind here somewhere, it’s just that the exact details of what may be a family legend, have been lost in the mists of time. With the “as told by …” concept we can keep both.
I wish I could claim to have thought up this idea myself, but I read about the “as told by …” concept somewhere on the web a year or two ago. If you were the author of the idea, please get in touch so I can give you the appropriate credit in this post.
This post is written as a result of the Daily Prompt Agree to Disagree