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11 September 2012

How Will You Handle Scandal?

Have you thought about how you will handle those family skeletons that you will eventually uncover? Give some thought to it before simply posting the entire story as a blog post or putting it in a public tree. Of course how you handle something from 1960 is different from something that took place in 1760.


  1. My great-great Grandmother "disappeared" at a certain point in time. It was assumed by others in our family that she passed away. We couldn't find her grave (some family have her buried next to another person with the same surname that the gravestone indicates she was his wife...unlikely) and we still cannot find her grave (yet).

    Imagine my surprise when I discovered my great-great Grandfather had her "put away" and that the matter ended up in court. The judge ruled in her favor and we don't know what happened to her afterwards.

  2. Back in 1965 I started working on my Johnson family genealogy. A lot of my beginning information came from older relatives. Whenever I asked about my Great Uncle (born about 1878), I always got the same answer “He left home at an early age, and never heard from again.”
    Imagine my surprise when searching GenealogyBank, I found a very lengthy newspaper article about my Great Uncle. The short version is he was drunk, had a gun, shot several people, he thought they were dead, so he committed suicide. The people he thought were dead, were just injured.
    I’m sure the “older relatives” thought I would never learn the truth, especially since the family lived in Virginia, and the shooting/suicide was in New Jersey. Back in 1965 nobody could imagine that the future would include personal computers and all the internet has to offer.

  3. I have found quite a few things that were "family secrets". I was asked to look into a family story by my husbands sisters and it turned out to be a made up story that got out of hand. When I told them about it it caused a huge family rift that we are still dealing with. So I have decided not to make anything public unless specifically asked. Some of the things concern still living people and I have learned my lesson.