Conflict between census records and death certificate

+8 votes
127 views
Resolving conflicting information. Death certificate for Simon odonnell shows place of birth as ireland. Pennsylvania's census records 1900-1930 show his birthplace as Pennsylvania. Thoughts?
WikiTree profile: Simon Odonnell
in Genealogy Help by Rachael Hindman G2G2 (2.6k points)
retagged by Ellen Smith
Rachael, please provide some more information. There is more than one Simon O'Donnell in Pennsylania showing on the censuses during the relevant time period. Either his profile ID, or birth date, siblings, parents? Some more information to narrow down which Simon you are searching an answer for.

The Simon O'Donnell birth record used as a source belongs to the son of Simon O'Donnell and Mary Slattery  - see https://civilrecords.irishgenealogy.ie/churchrecords/images/birth_returns/births_1874/03131/2148303.pdf

-Added URL of profile to question for easier research.

Ruth (O'Donnell) Hindman 09 Apr 1905 - Jul 1973 is Simon's daughter. See https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:J2H3-5N5 and https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:MG8Y-WNP.

Simon was born about 1874 in Pennsylvania according to the 1910 census. There he is listed as Simon E married to Fanni.

The 1900 census has him born in Sep 1871 - https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:M34J-PRB.

He's Samuel E in the 1920 census - https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:M6YN-YS6.

In 1940 it looks like he is Edward S married to Fannie but still born in 1874, so may not have died in 1927.

Simon and Fanny Clever? (Oliver?) married in 1896 - his parents were Samuel O'Donnell and Elizabeth - https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:VFW5-CMV

Son Charles got WWI draft card https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:33S7-81JC-C1Y?i=4978&cc=1968530 though I can't see one for his father.

 

I stand corrected Simon Edward O'Donnell born 8 September 1873, wife Fannie does have a draft card - https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:33SQ-G1JC-Z8N?i=4980&cc=1968530

His dopplegangers include this Ohio man born 7 October 1874, wife Katherine https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:33S7-L1D9-19Q?i=5055&cc=1968530 who might be the Ohio Infantry man who died on 16 Feb 1927 https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/3:1:939K-FHQT-CK?i=405&cc=1832324 - he was a "Native Born" American.

 

3 Answers

+6 votes
Who was providing the information on the conflicting records? It may be that one of the people involved did not know him well enough to know the facts and was just making a best guess. Alternatively, these could be two separate people.
by Lynda Crackett G2G6 Pilot (631k points)
Good reminder. Who is the "informant" on the death certificate? Depending on how close they were to the deceased, they may have just guessed.  I'd look for another type of record. In the absence of that, I'd tend to go with what all census records record as that information was provided by someone close to the family during their lifetime-- maybe even by the person himself.
+8 votes
Can you find any other records for him? Maybe a World War draft registration or an obituary?
by Kay Knight G2G6 Pilot (436k points)
+5 votes
Make sure that you have enough information so that you are sure the census and death records are for the same person. Based on what you stated in your question I would suspect that the records are for different people with the same name and both lived close to each other as well as were close date wise when they were born.
by Dale Byers G2G Astronaut (1.5m points)

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