Biography Builders Oct/Nov 2017. Unsourced

+23 votes

This Month Oct. 15 through Nov. 15: The theme is Unsourced Profiles.

As a follow up to the Source-a-Thon, this month we'll write biographies for profiles that are currently unsourced by the usual WikiTree "Sourcerers" standards. You may draw from your watchlist, but do not create new profiles for this month's Bio Builders challenge.

Biography Builders Goal: To make profiles as complete as possible with well-written biographies and sources. You should research as much as you can find on a person, writing the information onto the profiles to create as complete a life story as you can for that person. Sourcing should be full citations. This includes adding categories and links to events and people connected to that profile and citing all those additions. See the first month for examples of how to participate.

Here's our checklist:

Data Section.

  • birth date/place
  • names of parents
  • marriage date/place and spouse name
  • death date/place

Biography Section:

  • Written (full) sentences stating the facts above, adding inline sources to each fact.
  • Is the profile '''Genealogically Defined?'''
  • As a general rule biographies should be in your own words. Paraphrase and rewrite, don't copy/paste.
  • Baptism, burial, military, and other life events with inline sources.
  • Something to "humanize" the person, such as career or avocation with sources.
  • List of children with at least one pertinent fact.
  • One of the suggestions was siblings. I think this takes up real estate.
  • Explanatory remarks, if needed (e.g. disputed persons information, Research Notes, whatever needs extra explaining).
  • Photos or pictures, background. Not a must, but nice (you need to own the copyright unless they are in the public domain).
  • Categories/Projects.
  • Connection to the Global Tree.
  • All duplicates merged or initiated.
  • Links to persons and events, perhaps from Wikipedia.
  • Historical context as related to the person's life.
  • Sources, Sources, Sources.

You can see some ideas on where to find some of this information on the Biography Builders space page, linked below.

Use "comments" below to ask questions.

WikiTree profile: Space:Biography_Builders
in Requests for Project Volunteers by Anne B G2G Astronaut (1m points)


Biography quote

What a great quote. This should be the motto for Biography Builders. Thanks Keith.
I agree, Connie. Thanks, Keith.
if someone wants to write biographies for some of my pre-1900 profiles, go ahead. it would be nice if someone can notify me if they do- so i can check accuracy of said biography.
Hi Katy, On Wednesdays, you should get an email "Family Activity Feed" It will tell you, if anyone has made any changes to profiles on your watchlist. You can also check, in between by going to the drop down menus in the upper right corner. Choose My Wikitree > Family Activity Feed. I check mine every couple of days.

Maybe some of us will find your profiles this month.

20 Answers

+13 votes
Lilian Edith (Elliott) Gillespie

withdrawn - chose this profile because it was in fact fully sourced, though without inline citations. I worrry that "unsourced" is entered on profiles which do indicate where the entered information can be found.
by Valerie Willis G2G6 Mach 6 (61.8k points)
edited by Valerie Willis
Ah that's how it got done so fast last night.
+14 votes
  8. merging into Bouton-102
  39.  & -66
by Anne B G2G Astronaut (1m points)
edited by Anne B
I'm really enjoying this one. A new hunt all the time.
Wow Anne. You did a lot this month.
+12 votes
Interesting. All mine are sourced so I might have to adopt a few orphans or perhaps do some that are joined to my tree, but belong to other people.

1.George Corbett Added biography, census data, photocopy of marriage certificate, newspaper article re parents death, children, UK project place template, 12 sources. Will go back at a later date and make profiles for the children. It was on my to do list anyway.
2, Susan Chad Added biography, census data. 14 sources, UK project place template, adopted her orphaned profile and several of her family members, all unsourced (plenty to keep me busy).
3. Charles Drewell Added biography, census data, 7 sources, UK project place template, adopted orphaned profile.
4. William Kentish Added biography, census data, 8 sources, UK project place template, adopted orphaned profile.
5. Thomas Drewell Added biography, children, census data, 12 sources, UK project place template and genealogically defined, adopted orphaned profile.
6. Alice Martha Drewell Added biography, children, census data, 11 sources, UK project place template and genealogically defined, adopted orphaned profile.
7. Mary Sophia Kentish Added biography, census data, 9 sources, UK project place template and adopted orphaned profile.
8. Kate Ellen Kentish Added biography, census data, 6 sources, UK project place template and adopted orphaned profile.
9. Jessie Kentish Added biography, census data, 7 sources, UK project place template and adopted orphaned profile.
10. Rose Emily Kentish Added biography, census data, 7 sources, UK project place template and adopted orphaned profile.
11. Ann Kentish Added biography, census data, 10 sources, UK project place template.
12. Sarah Teresa Bland Added biography, census data, 8 sources, UK project place template.
13. Alexander Lawn Added biography, census data, 7 sources, UK project place template.
14. Mary Etherington Added biography, census data, children, 18 sources, UK project place template.
15. Ada Corbett Added biography, census data, 6 sources, UK project place template.
16. Frank Birchall Added biography, census data, 6 sources, UK project place template.
17. Thomas Fenton Added biography, census data, 10 sources, UK project place template.
18. Thomas Lambert Added biography, census date, children, 10 sources, UK project place template.
19. Joseph Swallow Add biography 2 sources, picture of marriage entry in parish registers, UK project place template.
20. Jonas England Added biography, census data, 11 sources, UK project  place template.
21. Hiram Englland, Added biography, census date, 10 sources, UK project place template.
22. Jack Farmery Added biography, 2 sources, UK project place template, Genealogically Defined.
23. Jack Count Added biography, 3 sources, UK project place template.
24. Marie Count Added biography, 3 sources, UK project place template
25. David Williams Added biography, 3 sources, UK project place template.
by Joan Whitaker G2G6 Mach 5 (57.4k points)
edited by Joan Whitaker
Mine are all sourced too. I'm going to work on the Connecticut Unsourced profiles, I only made a dent during the sourc-a-thon. I
I love reading these, Joan, I saw your research note on George Corbett's profile, so had a quick look for him. He's still alive on the 1939 register living with his married daughter Mary Ann Fisher in West Bromwich. I think his death could have been the one registered in 1946.
Thanks Carol. I am back on wikitree now. Was blocked all evening, apparently I was working too fast and triggered something that blocked me.
Blocked!! That sounds scary, but so glad you're back with us again.
I think I might have clicked on Bio Builders on the Challenge Tracker  by mistake while doing some sourcing. If I have they should not be counted. All the biographies I have done are listed above. Sorry if it causes a problem.
I know I did at least once. I'm using the count here, but thought I'd check it with the tracker, to see how close they are.
Wow you did a lot too.
+14 votes
John Dromgool - - written up a bio, filled in descendants & connected; moving on because its a managed profile after all & don't want to swamp the poor profile manager.

Frederick William Gurnsey - than was fun, nice WW1 record, now connected

Richard Rider an empty Virginian profile, should be interesting - had a little fun, gathered scattered family, sourced, connected in Wikitree & proposed merges etc.

Austin Rider because there were issues & it was lovely to have someone outside Wikitree offer help. Surprised to find him so well connected, and disappointed to find no descendants entered

John Brewster - found an un-named, unsourced profile, created new category, added headings & beginning to fill in bio from the original screen-shot attachment; will need to look at descendants too. - A week later - I had wanted to take on a pre 1500 unsourced profile but oh dear, oh golly gosh! What to make of this lot? Added a few "unsourced" and "did he/she ever really exist" categories and will have to keep an eye on them. The new Brewster one name study should prove very interesting though.
by Valerie Willis G2G6 Mach 6 (61.8k points)
edited by Valerie Willis
I hope Richard Rider-132 got to move out before they turned his home into a reservoir. :)
Thank you Valerie
+13 votes
All my open historical profiles are sourced, most are fully sourced to the best of my ability. So I will just continue to work on profiles from the unsourced piles which I'm working on for the Sourcerer's challenges and add the tally to biobuilders as well using the tracker.

I'm going to push myself, and try to work on some pre-census profiles!
by Michelle Wilkes G2G6 Pilot (108k points)
Go for it Michelle
As I have access to Essex PRs, and they are not well covered by family search/FreeReg, I'll work on those. I'll also aim to try to identify unknown maiden names of women.
proving a bit trickier than I thought...sourcing profiles and expanding bios only to discover I can't find all the sources to meet the criteria of "genealogically defined" lol
+12 votes
Great idea for this month's competition. I'm always running across Unsourced (sounds almost like Undead) profiles that I can do Bio's for, but they don't qualify for that month's Bio Builders.
by Bob Keniston G2G6 Pilot (175k points)
+8 votes
In again.  Lots to work with this month.
by Connie Graves G2G6 Mach 4 (40.6k points)
+9 votes

I'm in, too. Lots of Ontario profiles I didn't get to during the Source-A-Thon.

1. Magdalena Gingerich Hunsperger

by Laurie Cruthers G2G6 Mach 8 (88.2k points)
edited by Laurie Cruthers
I never heard of Tunker's before. I always like to learn new things.
I had never heard of them either. On the census their religion was given as R. Bro., so at one point I had them affiliated with an English religious group until I clued into the fact that DUH they were Pennsylvania Dutch. As for learning new things, it's truly a history lesson every day on this site, isn't it?
yes definitely
+8 votes

I'll do a few!

1. edited the Biography, Birth Place, Death Place and Status Indicators for Joseph Allen. (added sourcec, bio, location category and research notes to unsourced profile)

2 And his wife: Sarah (May) Allen. (Added source, bio, location category, corrected LNAB) to unsourced profile.

by Pat Credit G2G6 Mach 6 (63.9k points)
edited by Pat Credit
+8 votes
This is a great idea.  I may take some from my Watchlist, as I've adopted quite a few orphaned (and likely unsourced) family members over time.
by Greg Lavoie G2G6 Pilot (168k points)

1.  Louis-Th√©antre Lemieux: Biography written

2.  Armand Lizotte: Biography written

3.  √Čtienne Nadeau: Biography written

4.  Joseph Lessard: Biography written

5.  Antoine Chabot: Biography written

6.  Etienne Dodier: Biography written

7.  Marie Gendron: Biography written

+8 votes

This will be my first time participating in the Bio Builders Challenge! My goal is to build 10 biographies this month for those that are Unsourced within my own tree.

I am starting with a profile I added a while ago when I first joined WikITree, but was left unsourced and bio-less until today.

1. Mary Virginia (Hartman) Spiker - Genealogically Defined

2. William Henry Spiker - Genealogically Defined

3. Letitia May (Everly) Spiker - Genealogically Defined 

4. Bertha D. Spiker - Genealogically Defined

5. Blanche V. Spiker - Genealogically Defined

[The story of Letitia and her two little girls Bertha and Blanche above is heartbreaking! Common in those days, but still...]

6. Jacob Spiker - I did my best with sparse sources, but also tried to indicate where citations and further research were further needed. Definitely not genealogically defined :(

7. Caroline Josephine (Jenkins) Hartman - Genealogically Defined

8. Frederick P. Hartman - Genealogically Defined

9. Levi Horton Jenkins - Definitely not genealogically defined. I did my best with the information available, but many sources still needed to write the complete story.

10. Elizabeth Kroliczak - This is the profile for one of my great aunts who was deaf, never married, and childless. I think it is really important to provide narratives for people like her that sometimes get left out because it reminds us of an earlier time. Genealogically Defined (but easy to do considering her situation).

by Christina Spiker G2G1 (1.8k points)
edited by Christina Spiker
That is a sad tale of Bertha and Blanche. Caroline's profile is lovely
Great Start Christina
+6 votes
by Belinda Pereira G2G2 (2.3k points)
edited by Belinda Pereira
Hi Belinda, I just read Babcock-2895. I like the way you headed the Census information. I do have a suggestion. The information in the research notes section, is included in the biography, so you could probably eliminate most of the section. I think I would keep the small section on the alternate uses of his name.
Thank you Belinda for participating and making wikitree a better place.
+6 votes
I like doing these. Having trouble figuring out what we are able to use for this months goal?

Can we do the profiles that we found sources for during the source a thon?







by Jennifer Robins G2G6 Mach 1 (13.3k points)
edited by Jennifer Robins

Last year, when we did the post source-a-thon, we did profiles we'd sourced during the thon. This year no. Just unsourced now. They don't have to have the unsourced template. But the unsourced categories are a good place to start if you need help finding profiles.

Nice job on Klimmer.

Thanks Jennifer
+7 votes

I'm back...

1) Joseph Wheeler, Jr.

2) James Brown

3) Anne (Avery) Babcock genealogically defined

4) William Babcock

5) Samuel Burrows (not much to work with there but better than it was)

6) Lydia Burrows (do not like the challenge tracker :(  )

7) Abigail "Nabby" (Burrows) Wilbur

8) Zerviah (York) Wheeler Genealogically Defined

9) May (Morrison) Pringle

10) Zebulon York started off easy, then got complicated, technically genealogically defined but didn't add because the wife's & children's profiles haven't been created yet.

11) Thomas York Not sure if this one counts or not, added a lot more references (the two that were there were changed to inline citations), more elaboration on the bio, with research notes and added info about the missing date of death), except for the death date issue it is now genealogically defined.

12) John York, Sr  (finally, whew...)

13) Lydia (York) Miner aka Minor ~ completed, post merge clean up after merge York-4107 completed 21 Nov 2017.

14) Anna (York) Brown

15) Simeon Brown, III 

16) Elder Simeon Brown, Jr

17) Mary "Polly" (Brown) Griffin ~ in progress (the usual, working on one find a problem with one connected), newly adopted, after completed will propose merge with Brown-14845-research done

18) George Miner ~ Newly Adopted infant profile, bio, references and background image added

19) Thomas Miner ~ What I thought was going to be simple was actually quite a lot from disconnecting from wrong parents to FULL bio,

20) Frank Bates ~ Finished Incomplete Bio, added what references able to find at this time (still too early for some records to be released)

21) Jakob Andres

22) Katharina J K Andres ~ Newly adopted, not perfect, but better than it was...this one will be revisted in February 2018

23) Catherine Klaassen  ~ trying to check into something I noted in the biography but may not find out anything for a while.

24) Samuel Frink, III ~ (got pulled in different direction) in progress including adding wife and connecting her to her parents.

by T Counce G2G6 Mach 5 (55.3k points)
edited by T Counce
I'm such a sucker for orphaned profiles...sigh
I found the proof of Jakob Andres parents that I was missing before, changed the research note and moved the sources to their proper inline citation spots...not expecting this to be counted twice...just adding the additional info in the comment section.
You were definitely on a roll this month T. 5 more and you will have reached 100.
Would have had them done if my body would have cooperated and I didn't have to figure out how I was related to someone who contacted me on Ancestry. Taking the next month off though, I room is a disaster, and it takes so long for me to do anything.
+6 votes
This is a great definition for and statement for research and sources, sources, sources.  Been doing this for a couple of months--Throckmortons, Stouts, Ashtons etal.  Suggest this outline for a biography be given to all new wikitreers to get them off the the right foot.  Agree with the pic--a biography is what happened between birth and death that is important.
+6 votes

I'm working on some - I have been tracking them on the challenge tracker but will also keep a list of my own here if that's okay - don't count them twice!

1.Victoria Rogala Harrison (1909-2005): Still need to add profiles for her parents

2. Emma Lucretia Catlin Dailey (1860-1923) DEFINED (I also added her 13! children)

3.Willis Catlin (1865-1916) DEFINED

4. Ann Dutcher Townsend (1833-1897): I don't think she's defined because I don't have a primary source for her mother; also not sure if she counts - a source was listed but it was a family bible with no images or links, so I think it's in the spirit of the challenge. 

5. Beda Mather Adams (1798-1873): Not defined yet - working on getting primary sources for all 12 children.

6. Joseph Catlin (1889-1953)

7. Anna Jeanette Cheeseman Miller (1897-1988): DEFINED

8. John William Miller (b. 1893)

9. Elmer Norman Cheeseman (1895-1964)

10. Bernice Savage Cheeseman Downer (1900-1922): DEFINED

11. Leslie Porretta (1950 - 1979): DEFINED

12. Stephen Edward Dussault (1946-1973)

by Amanda D. G2G6 Mach 1 (12.4k points)
edited by Amanda D.
I'm doing the same thing, keeping a list here and counting them on the tracker. We sort of decided we like the lists so we can see what others are doing. And it's not like there are oodles of them, really generally just a few.
+5 votes

Hi, I'm working on a few profiles that I'm locating through Data Doctors error reports. Some of them are orphans. Some of them are not. But all of them appear to be a result of .ged file imports and many have little to no information. - originally she was Mary Unknown, but thankfully she had a spouse. Added sources, children marriage. - added 1900 census showing his father (unsure of mother). WW1 & 2 Draft registration sources - which tell a lot about a person at that moment. Marriage source, named children, noted death and source. - all sources led to broken links "Page not Found" on Ancestry and there wasn't a lot there on the profile to begin with, so had to source everything I could. Fortunately, the profile manager had posted some images, which were helpful. - Improved an orphaned profile. Imported data wasn't very helpful. Gave him a father, brother, marriage date and christening date.

by Raewyn Vincent G2G6 Mach 2 (27.5k points)
edited by Raewyn Vincent
Looks good Raewyn. Thank you for taking that unsourced unknown and giving her a transformation.
Thank you, Anne. It's gratifying in itself to be able to give this lady more of an identity.
Hope you enjoyed writing biographies this month. Thank you
+5 votes
I am new to this topic but think I just worked on a profile that fits into the category of Biography Builders.

I was working on merging duplicate profiles & there were 2 Joseph HUTCHESONs with different wives. So I researched him & found that they were the same person who had married twice.

I added the marriage dates in a biography which I put on both profiles, so that each profile manager could see that they were indeed the same person & hopefully accept my merge proposal.
by G R G2G6 Mach 1 (13.5k points)
It has been pointed out to me that I have misunderstood the title of this category, so I would like to make a suggestion for your kind consideration. What do other think about changing the title of "Biography Builders" to "Profile Builders" ?

I think PROFILE more accurately encompasses the ideas of biography PLUS sources PLUS inline citations & will help not mislead others make the same mistake I made of assuming it only concerns filling out the Biography.

So now that I have a better understanding of this category, I withdraw the HUTCHESON submission & would like to try submitting another 2 FIFIELD profiles, where I think I did a more complete job of meeting the requirements & look forward to your feedback to see if you agree that I have it right now :)

These 2 profiles are listed as brothers Giles & William. Two copies of William's profiles were incorrectly merged (about 3 years ago) into Giles profile & both Giles & William's profiles have been sitting on Wikitree with not much done for about 2 years.

So I have gone through all the details mentioned on EACH profile & found their sources & added the inline citations for each of them.

Thanks for your consideration :)
Yes, those two work quite nicely.
I finally found some time to go back over the HUTCHESON profile & added sources & inline citations ... so I think it now fits into the builders requirements :)
Yes that's much better.
Great work on these! Seeing proper inline citations makes me giddy ;)
+3 votes
I have been doing some on side but I didn't sign up. Is it too late to sign up and get some that I marked for this. I am in.
by Linda Barnett G2G6 Pilot (330k points)
It's not too late.
+2 votes
This is my first time with Biography Builders. I'll try to do more.

1. Dorothee Boudreaux - This one was unsourced with no bio; added birth, marriage, children, death, all with sources, and categories and project.
by Joyce Rivette G2G6 Mach 4 (44.6k points)
Welcome to bio builders Joyce. Nicely done. The theme will change on the 15th so make sure to look for the post.

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