What is a generic location? A generic location is a broad, non-specific location, such as: England, Germany or the United States. In addition to a country, it can be a state or territory, such as: Pennsylvania, California or Ontario.
Why are these generic locations a research opportunity? While it is good to know that someone was born in Germany and died in the United States, those locations are vague. Planning a research trip to Germany to find someone’s birthplace when Germany is all you have to work with, is like looking for the proverbial needle in a haystack.
What can you do? GenDetective™ provides the “Events recorded at a generic location” report which identifies events, by person, that have a generic location. Examine these events to determine if you can narrow the event location further.
For example, instead of someone dying in the United States, identifying the state, such as Colorado, provides you a much smaller region to research. Narrowing it even further, to say Pitkin county, increases your odds of finding a local record, or obituary, that identifies where your relative died and might be buried.
Where should you begin? Examine the events that you have located for the person, go back and pull up each record, source or documentation and see if there are any potential clues. Does any event provide a clue that might point you in a new direction? What about the person’s spouse? Do any of their events (or articles, notes, letters, will, etc) point you in a specific direction? Look for any missing events; finding additional events may provide you with additional clues.
GenDetective™ enables you to identify new research opportunities in your existing data by identifying events that occurred at generic locations, providing you with additional avenues to research.