Friday, July 6, 2012

Mr. Darnedest Street

Records say the darnedest things

We depend upon records to reveal the “truth” about our pasts.

Yet sometimes records have anomalies. Some are amusing or humorous. Some are interesting or weird. Some are peculiar or suspicious. Some are infuriating, even downright laughable.

Yes, Records say the Darnedest Things.”

Records Say the Darnedest Things: Mr. Darnedest Street

It is exciting to see indexes to the 1940 census coming online. It is also funny to see therein the names that uncaring parents give or unlucky brides inherit. Elmer Zink shared one on the FamilySearch blog that some may find hilarious and some may find horrific.

Mind you, each record is indexed twice. If the two indexers differ, then the record is sent to a third person, an arbiter, who can change any value in the batch to anything he chooses.

Two bad indexers or one bad arbiter, can do a lot of damage.

Observe:

image

I’m actually 2nd cousins with the Streets, so I know a little about this crazy family. He was named Here at the hospital on Main Street, after his four grandparents. His Main line ends End, but not Here. Got that? A dead End left his grandmother a widow. To hear Here, you’d think Here shares his name here with the numerically named 500 great-grandparents on his mother’s side. They were poor and lived on the Streets. In dire Streets, the Ends justified the Mains.

Don’t even ask who was on second…

3 comments:

  1. Note to self: do NOT read stuff tagged "humor" while drinking soda. Cleaning the monitor is not fun.

    ReplyDelete
  2. If the indexers and arbitrators had followed the field instructions, the entry on line 71 should have been:
    Surname: Mathews
    Given name: Here ends 500
    Relationship to head: Main

    ;)

    ReplyDelete
  3. I read and chuckled at this humorous almost unbelievable post. I don't think I really ever saw one like it while indexing.

    ReplyDelete