How was Valentine’s Day? Fun? Did you interview your parents? What did you learn?
Today we will start diving into record sources by starting with the birth certificate. Ask your parents to show you your birth certificate and theirs. How are they the same? How are they different? How do they compare to this one from 1882 and 1886?
One thing to remember when you look at records is what they say is not always the truth. Do not always believe what you read. The records provide clues that will help you prove an individual is or is not part of your family so it is important to note everything.
For example, the first certificate is for Frank Kokoska, my great-grand uncle, brother to my great grandfather, Joseph Kokoska. Looking this certificate over, knowing what I know about the family, the first thing that sticks out as incorrect is Majdalena’s maiden name. The certificate says Skryvan. In fact, her maiden name was Priban.
Look at the second certificate. It says it is also for Frank Kokoska, but the midwife, or whomever wrote the information down, wrote down the wrong name. The child is actually Charles. This is proven through additional records such as Census, Death Certificates, and World War I Draft Registration Cards.
The midwife is the same for both births, yet lists Majdalena’s maiden name differently for Charles’s birth, as Trivan.
This child is also listed as the 5th child born to this family. Based on all my research the children up to Charles were Joseph, Frank, Unknown, Charles. So he would have been the fourth child. I later discovered who child number three was. Her name was Emilie.
Explore these birth certificates in more detail. Do you notice anything else different about them? Did you compare them to yours and your parent’s certificates? If you learned new details from your parent’s birth certificates that was not already in your notes, be sure to add it and add the source. This means to write down what the record is, the number assigned to it, the date, who it is for, and where it is held.