That family Bible is a goldmine, tracing your family back decades and recording crucial dates of birth, marriage, and death. But can you use it for your Daughters of the American Revolution or Sons of the American Revolution application?
It depends. There are a few things you need to confirm:
- Do you have the title page of the Bible (with the publication date) or other evidence of it? It was common for families to recopy old information into new Bibles, which can introduce mistakes.
- Does that the publication date occur within the lifetime of the individuals mentioned in the Bible? A couple who received a Bible as a wedding present could fairly accurately (at least to the best of their knowledge) enter their birth information and the names of their parents. They’re far less likely to accurately enter the birth information of their grandparents.
- Does the handwriting and ink fit the period? Families held on to Bibles for generations and may have added or changed dates over time. (Multiple styles of handwriting or “hands” can also indicate a change in scribe.) If you note changes, use with care.
- Does it actually answer your question? If you are seeking to prove a parent-child relationship between individuals in the Bible, but the Bible doesn’t actually state relationships, find another source!
Have questions? Contact us!