Identify and copy valuable information from
Use original and compiled records.
Record: 1. a tangible link
to our ancestor; 2. a written account of a very important
life event (e.g., birth, marriage and death records).
Compiled Record: a record
(usually in book form) consisting of information that may
come from original records, other compiled records and verbal
testimony (e.g., a book titled "The Life of Thomas
Walpole Tyrrell," or "The History of the Wright Family").
Original Record: a record
created at or close to the time of an event by an eyewitness
to the event. (e.g., a birth record by the doctor who
delivered the baby).
EPISODE FOUR: THE PAPER
Episode Four will help you understand how the records
you find about your ancestors are a witness to important
events in their lives. Part one introduces Rafael Guber.
He, like many Americans had ancestors who immigrated to
the United States. Rafael, along with 100 descendants of
immigrants, recreated the experience of first entering
America through Ellis Island, near the Statue of Liberty,
in New York Harbor. In part two, experts Sharon Carmack and
John Colletta will introduce you to the major types of
records you can find as you look for the written accounts
of events in the lives of your ancestors.
Before Viewing the Episode
- Duplicate the following:
-- Student handout on the next page.
-- Family Group Record
- Read aloud the EPISODE OVERVIEW and OBJECTIVES.
After Viewing the Episode
Identify and copy valuable information from records
- Discuss the meaning of the terms "original
records" and "compiled records"
and the strengths and weaknesses of each. Have
your students give examples of original and compiled
- Distribute the student handout on the next page,
and the Family Group Record.
- Have each student complete a Family Group Record
on the family of William Henry Whitaker and Mary
Jane Wyatt, using the information taken from the
FLORIDA PIONEERS AND THEIR DESCENDANTS.
- Have the students document the source of the
information on the back of the family group
- The following information should be written on
the family group record:
Husband: William Henry Whitaker
Born: 1 Aug 1821
Place: Savannah (Georgia)
Married: 10 June 1851
Place: Manatee County, FL
Father: Richard WHITAKER
Mother: Frances SNELL
Wife: Mary Jane WYATT
Born: 11 Apr 1831
Place: Leon County, FL
Father: William WYATT
Mother: Nancy Catherine STEWART
Children: 1. Nancy Catherine
Stewart (b. abt. Jun 1852), married John HELVENSTON;
2. Louise Ansley, married Thomas G. EDMONSON; 3.
Furman Chaires (b. 4 Mar 1856), married Nellie Louise
ABBE; 4. Hamlin Valentine, married Ella DREW; 5.
William Richard; 6. Charles Clarence, married Sue F.
WHITCOMB; 7. Carrie; 8. Edward; 9. Emilie Victor; 10.
Flora Winnefred; 11. Grace.
Source: FLORIDA PIONEERS AND THEIR DESCENDANTS, Volume
One, compiled and edited by Anne Taylor Wood and published
by the Florida State Genealogical Society in 1992.
Create a timeline of events
- Encourage your students to create a timeline of
the events (like they did for themselves in
episode two) using all of the information about
William Henry WHITAKER. The timeline should
include the following:
1 Aug 1821 Born - Savannah
Abt 1835: Joined his half-brother Hamlin V. SNELL at
St. Marks, Florida, and worked in fishing industry.
1837?: Went to school in Tallahassee.
1839: Served in the Indian War.
1842: Went to Sarasota Bay.
1844: Started a business selling dried fish with
26 May 1845: Voted (#6) in the first statewide
election. Election Clerk at Precinct #5 (Sarasota,
10 Jun 1851: Married Mary Jane WYATT
Sep 1851: Received deed for homestead.
Jun 1852: First child born: Nancy Catherine Stewart.
1852-55?: Served as a Captain of volunteers in the
last Seminole Indian War.
9 Jan 1855: Owned 193 acres of the frontage on
4 Mar 1856: Third child born: Furman Chaires
Other information not tied to a
--Served as sheriff of Manatee.
--Credited with planting the first orange grove in
- Encourage your students to use any compiled or
original records about one of their ancestors and
create a timeline for him or her.
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