Our work on Absalom Hooper of Davidson County, Tennessee, begins with a transcription of the actual copy of his 1811 will.
We'll be visiting Absalom on a regular basis in Casefile Clues as he's got an interesting past and he's easy to get confused with other Absalom Hoopers.
His 1811 will provides several research suggestions on him and our searches for Absalom will avoid any and all compiled "trees," GEDCOM files, etc. as along as possible--or at least until all other clues have been exhausted. This largely is to avoid, even unconsciously, incorporating the ideas of others into my own research, particularly assumptions or conclusions of others that may be unfounded. That is not to say that online trees are always wrong, but that when there are probate, land, tax, and other records to utilize, those should be researched and analyzed as much as possible first.
Searching genealogical journals is also warranted, particularly when those journals are peer-reviewed. It is important not to reinvent the wheel.
It is also important when there have been incorrect statements repeated over and over to start fresh. One such statement is the maiden name of Absalom's wife, which while given in several databases, has never been justified--either by direct or indirect evidence.
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