Speculative family fiction

Imagine a family history built on any or all of the following:

  • wild genealogical leaps of logic ...
  • with no source citations ...
  • reliance on just one uncorroborated piece of information ...
  • claiming an ancestor because of proximity ...
  • taking someone else's family tree without verifying sources ...
  • falsifying elements of a record ....
  • fictionalizing where convenient ...
  • leap-frogging any semblance of rigour in research methodology in order to claim succession from an ancient Irish sept!

Any or all of these omissions, errors, or questionable premises can be found in many Irish Huggins family histories published online. The result of such an approach cannot be classified as a properly researched genealogy. Rather it is creative guesswork, it is an invention, ... it is speculative family fiction.

Why would anyone waste his or her time contriving such rubbish? to impress one's friends with feats of (phony) genealogical derring-do? Further, why would so-called genealogists then graft such nonsense onto their own family trees solely on trust?

Is it a family history they want? ... or a faery tale loaded with familiar names?

For more details on the different kinds of errors and unsubstantiated claims that have been committed in the name of family history, why bad research is a problem, and how to fix it, see this page, which cites examples from various Irish Huggins family trees:

Flawed Huggins (Ireland) family trees

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© Alison Kilpatrick, 2015. All rights reserved.
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"The past is a foreign country; they do things differently there."—Lesley Poles Hartley (1895–1972), The Go-Between (1953).

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© Alison Kilpatrick 2014–2017. All rights reserved.