Considering Disproven Existence for Marie (Spencer) Maupin

+5 votes

On 23 Feb 2020 Bartley McRorie wrote on Spencer-18985:

The profile manager and I are considering the "Disproven Existence" Research Box for the profile of [[Spencer-18985|Marie Spencer]]. For almost 100 years, the Maupin family story was that Gabriel's wife was a Spencer, daughter of the Earl of Spencer. However, it has since been proven and documented that she was Marie Hersent. But, many of the old sources that contained the errors were well respected, and consequently, well circulated. So, instead of merging Marie Spencer (Spencer-18985) into Marie Hersent (Hersant-2), it seems proper to label the profile with the "Disproven Existence" Research Box, in order to reduce the number of erroneous uploads. And the details of the old, now dis-proven story, included in the profile, may answer questions other researchers may have. Please offer comments or observations!

WikiTree profile: Marie Maupin
in Genealogy Help by Bartley McRorie G2G6 Mach 2 (20.9k points)
Why don't you just merge her away into Marie Hersant?
We discussed that strategy, but it would not serve the purpose of educating people who are laboring under the old paradigm.  New Marie Spencers would still be uploaded from GEDCOMs with old info.

A {{Disproven Existence}} box would serve a useful purpose here.
Makes sense.
Hearing no objections, the {{Disproven Existence}} box will be deployed.
It should be the {{Disproven Existence Project}} box and the Disproven Existence Project should be added as a profile manager.  There's a one week waiting period after announcement, which is more than satisfied since your announcement was in February!
Done!  Thanks for the help and guidance!

2 Answers

+5 votes
Best answer
Sometimes the truth is much less attractive than fictions, and fictions keep reappearing!  So what I tell people is, if you created a profile by mistake and it has no existence elsewhere, by all means merge it away -- but if the fictional person has an independent existence on geni, ancestry or other popular genealogy sites -- then we've got to keep the profile and tell the truth on it.
by Jack Day G2G6 Pilot (339k points)
selected by Bartley McRorie
Well said!
+3 votes
I think this profile can be highlighted now as a good example of what can be done with the profile for a fake person.  (Especially since I'm not the one who put the current narrative together!)

Notice that the narrative outlines what facts can be documented and what are not, and also identifies some of the publications in which the false narratives occur.

A profile like this for someone who never existed now becomes a resource for all the people who find "Marie Spencer" somewhere on the internet and want to know what WikiTree has to say about it.  This makes a real contribution.
by Jack Day G2G6 Pilot (339k points)

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