Too excited not to share!!
I am helping a friend research her family tree and then put it on WikiTree. I got stuck on her 2nd great-grandmother because no matter where I looked the surname Reborde (which had been given to me by a family member) did not seem to exist. I went back to the marriage record--one of two records I have for her-- and noticed her name was spelled Olive Ribordy.
A Google search of this surname brought me straight to WikiTree! I found an entire cluster of Ribordy family. I felt sure this family was connected to Olive since the name Ribordy is from Switzerland and not at all common in the US at that time. The entire Ribordy family that was uploaded is a mess and abandoned, but determined to find the connection to Olive, I have adopted this family.
Starting with the most recent patriarch, Gaspard Nicholas Ribordy, I rebuilt the Ribordy tree offline and then began researching each child. I knew Olive's father would have to be one of Gaspard's sons, born in Switzerland who married a woman from Norway (based on Olive's 1900 census record)
I hit pay dirt on the third son I researched! He not only married a woman from Norway, he died in the same town where Olive was living the year she got married. Searching through an entire Dakota Territory Census, I finally found the whole family listed together (very badly misspelled of course!)
Long story short--by working backwards from a known family cluster already on WikiTree, I was able to find Olive within that family and make the connection.
Now my task will be to clean up and source this entire Ribordy line--now connected to Olive--because as I said, it was uploaded and left behind as a mess. But how often do you see Switzerland as a country of birth on a US Census?
Have I said how much I love WikiTree?