Re: THE MYTH OF WILLIAM BOLLING AND AMELIA RANDOLPH
Jane, did I claim to be "entirely and absolutely correct" or did I state in plain English what I believe to be true as a result of research I've done?If I don't get to use my own words what's the point of a conversation?
If I were to say that I'm absolutely, 100 percent certain that Sherlock Holmes did not exist as a living, breathing human being would you say that this as "a pretty strong statement for any mortal to make?"If, after years of research I say that I'm absolutely sure that the William Bolling-Amelia Randolph Bolling story is fiction - something plenty of people in your own line of descent have come to realize on their own - am I not entitled to state my conclusion as a mere mortal?
Your "entitlement" is to challenge this conclusion on the basis of evidence.To this point you've challenged not the conclusion but me.You questioned my motives, saddled me with a strawman argument and put words in my mouth.Jane, if you really want to "hear or read" about "what I found out," what's wrong with using the search function for this forum and reading all the stuff that's been written about William and Amelia?Why try to reinvent the wheel and then grease it by going personal?
Jane, I could take a piece of paper and write on it that I'm the long-lost great-grandson of Clark Gable.I could take this paper to a notary public and, after paying a fee, sign it and get the notary to verify that I am Fred Hof and then place his/her stamp on the paper.All the notary is doing is attesting to the fact that the person claiming to sign the paper is in fact the person signing the paper.That notary's stamp does not make me kin to Clark Gable.The notary is not going to investigate my claim.If you want to use notarized statements as "proof" in your own genealogical research, go for it.
Do I think that people actually publish things that are untrue?Well, yes.Is something that is untrue necessarily dishonest or fraudulent?No.Please read the long (too long!) posting I did a few years ago about the Bolling-related work of Zelma Price.Her Bolling genealogy is full of errors.But she was very careful to say exactly where the dubious material came from: notarized statements by relatives!Do I think she really exercised proper "due diligence" by kicking over rocks and challenging the material handed her?No.But I'm not about to accuse her of fraud either.
There are some folks out there who I think are distant kin of yours who are interested in finding out how the William-Amelia story got started.It could really be a simple mix-up based on the fact that there was a Colonel William Bolling who married a Randolph cousin, but considerably after the fictional couple "tied the knot."One hypothesis I've heard is that this story may have first appeared in contracted genealogies prepared for wealthy people seeking entry into the Daughters of the American Revolution.But this is ongoing research.
To sum up, I think everything you need to challenge my methods and conclusions already exists in this forum.If you find things I did wrong by all means nail me.But let me be the owner and definer of my own motives, words and arguments.Thanks Jane.