52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks

Week 2: Writing prompt - Challenge

I had made my way back in my family tree to my 3rd gr. grandfather William PERRY.  I finally located him on an 1850 census for Drew county, Arkansas but it had taken me several years to find this record.  It seems that when the census had been indexed the person transcribing the microfilm had mistakenly interpreted William's last name as TERRY instead of PERRY.  I finally requested a copy of the microfilm from the Family History Library of the LDS church so that I could look at the microfilm myself to see if the person indexed as William TERRY was instead William PERRY.  

These days we can look at scanned copies of the original census microfilms in the comfort of our own home on our personal computer.  But on this day many years  ago I found myself sitting at the library in front of a larger microfilm reader where I had loaded the 1850 census microfilm for Drew county, Arkansas.  I used the index  book which had been published to find which page I needed to go to on the microfilm in order to view the record I was looking for. (I'm not sure what year it had been published, but I can tell you that this was in the early 1990s when I was looking at it.)

I finally found the page and below is what I saw.  It is easy to understand why the person indexing the page mistook the P for a T but this is my PERRY family.  All the names and dates match.

The moral to my story... ALWAYS look at the original record.  It will save you many challenges along the way!

1850 census of Veasey Township, Drew county, Arkansas


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