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Sunday, 23 April 2017 06:08 Write a comment Send E-mail Permalink

I am curious about the reliability number. Did you assign it and, if so, how did you determine it?


J. Craig Canada Send E-mail Sunday, 23 April 2017 10:21
The software I use to maintain my data (Legacy) allows me to assign numbers 0 through 4 for reliability of a citation and defines 0 as "undecided".

I generally assign 4 to source documents or facsimiles: census records, marriage licenses, death certificates, obituaries.

If a FamilySearch International Genealogical Index record has a scan of a death certificate I mark the citation as "verified" and assign a reliability of 4. With no scan of the document I assign a 3.

I generally assign a reliability of 2 to FamilySearch Pedigree Resource Files and Ancestry Files and RootsWeb or other unsourced and uncited online genealogies ... or even 1 if the data looks flakey. I do not consider a list of sources at the end of the genealogy to be "cited". Cited means each item of data is sourced.

There's also how I'm feeling at the time, the mood I'm in, and if I remember to set a reliability when I create the citation.

If it has a 4 you can generally assume I have seen a reliable source document, or a scan of one.

I generally give Find-A-Grave a reliability of 2 or 3, about the same as a FamilySearch Pedigree Resource File, unless they include an obituary with the name and date of the newspaper or other publication. Frankly, some of the stuff on Find-A-Grave is blithering nonsense.

As with the FamilySearch International Genealogical Index, if they provide a scan of the document I will give it a reliability of 4.

J. Craig Canada Send E-mail Sunday, 23 April 2017 10:23
Legacy provides the following guidelines for assigning reliability:
0 - have not decided yet
1 - marginal evidence
2 - probable conclusion
3 - almost certain conclusion
4 - convincing evidence
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