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Success With Cousin Bait

Genealogists use the term “cousin bait”. We post family information on websites and blogs hoping to attract the attention of distant, unknown cousins. We are interested in exchanging family information.

I have met several family historians this way. Earlier this week, a posting on this blog caught the interest of another collateral relative. He would like to work together to fill in a branch of our shared family tree.

We do not have a common ancestor, but one of his Boyd relatives married one of my Carter relatives. Robert Boyd (b. abt. 1817) married Nancy Carter (1818-1901) in Coles County, Illinois in 1840. Their two oldest sons, George and James, both died in the Civil War.

The man who contacted me has posted his information on the WikiTree website, which I also use. I will go there to see what additional information he has on the Robert Boyd family.

In turn, my online tree cites another cousin’s scrapbook containing a page with information about the Boyds. I will scan the page and forward it to the man who contacted me.

There is a possibility that the two us are related in a way other than the in-law relationship with the Carters. I have a Boyd ancestor in an earlier generation.

My 4th great-grandmother was named Jane Boyd. I know little about her and have never done any research on this Boyd line. I wonder whether they were connected to the other Boyd family. I plan to ask my new contact about this possibility.

This interesting message from someone with a shared interest in a surname reinforces my commitment to keep posting “cousin bait”. You never know when new family information will turn up.

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