Collaboration Process on Nicholas Cain (~1708-1787)

+8 votes
Taking collaboration to a new level, for myself, at least, I have added a section called "Collaboration Process" at the bottom of the bio section on the profile of Nicholas Cain (Cain-462).  In it I spell out the process I would like to follow in order to get this profile into conformance with proper and legitimate sources currently attached.

Not exactly a question, but more of an announcement.

I am inviting all the managers of this profile, plus those on the trusted list and any other interested parties, to participate.
WikiTree profile: Nicholas Cain
asked in The Tree House by Steve Lake G2G5 (5.4k points)
retagged by Robin Lee
Two weeks and two sections have been processed.  In each section, birth and immigration, I added a link for an example of where the un-sourced info may have come from and an explanation of whether the info is relevant to this profile in the context of the sourced information.  No questions or comments so far, but I have had a number of conversations in and outside of WikiTree, so I'm hoping I'll have more help before the end of the process.

The next section is marriage, which should prove interesting because Nicholas only had one wife according to the published family history source, but his profile has three wives, none of whom are correct.
To the subject headings, Birth, Immigration and Marriage, were added Parents and Wives, which have now all been given a week each for discussion and evaluation of information and sources.

Note that each section still retains the original information found on this profile before this process began, under a sub-heading "UN-Sourced" and the new information supported by sources is under a subheading, "Sourced"

The next section to be discussed is children.  A new section just added is "Other Possible, but Unproven, Relationships" which will be discussed the week following Children.  One new potential collaborator was contacted today and one tentative collaborator has now committed to being involved.  Most managers and members of trusted lists of this and associated profiles are remaining quiet on the sidelines.  Even if I end up being the only contributor in this process, I believe the resulting profile will show that many viewpoints were treated fairly and that reasonable conclusions were reached.
As the end of this process was drawing near, it became apparent that what I had outlined was really only phase one, and that was identifying sourced and un-sourced information.  The process has been amended to include phase two, which is actually making changes to data and relationships.  I had intended that both would happen incrementally and simultaneously, but it is just as well to have two phases.  The good part is giving 6-8 more weeks of time to allow input.  The bad part is having 6-8 weeks more before it is finished.  But really, an hour or two per week isn't bad.
Phase two is nearing the end.  One corrected wife's profile remains, with notes explaining where and why the incorrect ones have been moved.  Three of those duplicates need to be merged.  A merge of duplicate sons named David needs to be completed.  Two incorrect children have been moved.  Last updates of the profile of Nicholas was finished this morning.

I guess this process now moves to phase three, which is simply ongoing maintenance as feedback may identify minor corrections or, hopefully, additions.

I would like to express my thanks to the many contributors, both within WikiTree and without, who I have had conversations with during this process.  While most of them lacked the depth of understanding and the fervor of purpose that I had, they were all supportive of my quest.  I will mention one, who went above and beyond my expectations, and that is Bev Hogan Blair.  She signs on through her husband, [[Blair-2218|Dan Blair]].  Bev asked good questions and took the time to go to a library and scan some pages that helped clear up some crossing line questions.

While our ancestors have stories to tell, the search for their stories becomes a story in itself.  The story of my search for my Cain's has been a good one with many twists and unexpected turns.
The process continues.  Image files from four Genealogical Society publications have been uploaded.  These are presented as examples of where some of the various theories for the origin of Nicholas Cain may have come from.  They were found through the efforts of a contributor who has given good help during this process and I thank Bev Hogan for that.

The reason for including the articles is to emphasize the need to look beyond sources.  We must properly analyze sources in order to use reasoning to make conclusions, but any given source may provide more than one conclusion, so it is important to acknowledge and compare all lines of reasoning in order to choose the best conclusion.  Who decides which is the best?  Each of us must choose our own, but not by compelling others to believe ours and exclude or hide the rest.  We must allow everyone the freedom to choose among all the possibilities for themselves.
Phase 3 is like hybrenation in that very little is going on.  But it may be like stew in that something is happening, but its below the surface.

One unexpected development is that a published author of the North Carolina Cains has joined WT.  I'm glad that line will now be in capable hands.


At times I worry that I stepped on toes by waltzing through the Cains.  I hope my contributions were taken as profile improvements and I just happened to be the messenger./facilitator/technician  I was very gratified to have gone through the process and hope the work done will stand up to the test of time.
It is time to begin Phase Four of the collaborative process, and the new year seems to be appropriate.  Oh, NO, not another phase!  Will this never end?  Hey, this is genealogy, it literally will never end.  I have put it off long enough, time to stop procrastinating.

Frivolity aside, Phase Four is necessary because the traditional methods of genealogy only go so far toward gaining a clearer view of the past.  While the old methods will never be replaced, we must embrace the new technologies that can be used to augment and enhance the old methods.  We are talking about DNA.  I am making the commitment to study all about what DNA is and how to use it.  I am taking a leap of faith that there will be open-minded and knowledgeable contributors who will be willing join this phase and be willing to tutor me.  Let us begin.
I will be attending a DNA seminar this coming Friday at the Denver Public Library.  It has been too easy to put out fires and avoid spending time following up on my commitment to learning about DNA.  This seminar will help me reset my priorities and improve my time management.

2 Answers

+4 votes
Wonderful approach to collaboration!   Thanks for being so thorough on your approach.
answered by Robin Lee G2G6 Pilot (481k points)
+2 votes
What amazing and excellent work!  Fascinating reading.  I hope that phase 4 DNA will agree with all the logic you have proposed.
answered by Kathy Zipperer G2G6 Pilot (223k points)

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