A while back as part of an assignment for the US Records Study Group, I revamped my organization system. It's an ongoing process and I'm still putting together files for each surname. Today I ran into a problem that I didn't even see coming. It's those Smiths.
You see, I have three separate Smith lines in my family tree (so far anyway). There is actually a couple other Smiths that married siblings or cousins of my direct-line ancestors, but for now I'm leaving them alone. My focus at the moment is putting together surname files for direct-line ancestors only.
Alta Edith Smith King is my paternal 2nd great grandmother. She was the daughter of Isaac Smith and Caroline Kocher Smith. She married Frank E King and had one child, my great grandmother Evelyn Edna King Carson, passing shortly after the birth. She's buried in Ashland Cemetery in Wetzel County, West Virginia.
Next up is my maternal 3rd great grandmother Isabel AD Smith Davis. I haven't got around to researching her line yet I don't know who her parents were. She married David Davis and had one child, my 2nd great grandmother Martha Elizabeth Davis Vanzandt. She's buried at Center Cemetery in Warrick County, Indiana.
My final Smith is another of my maternal 3rd great grandmothers, Louetta Smith Sanders Sikes. I'm still trying to get definitive proof, but I suspect her parents were Thomas Smith and Lucinda Newkirk Smith. She first married Delaney Husbury Sanders (my 3rd great grandfather) and they had five children that I know of-Lillie, William, Wayne, Eva Mae (my 2nd great grandmother) and Iva Francis. After being widowed, she remarried a couple years later to Isaac Sikes and gave birth to three more children-Delbert, Katherine and Clarence.
If I make one Smith file, I'm going to end up confusing the lines and mixing people up. The only way I can see my filing system working with all these Smiths is to have three separate hanging files (each with their own folders within). At the moment, my working solution is labeling the folders with the person where they come in, so basically the three grandmothers I mentioned earlier.
When filing Smiths, I'm going to have to be very careful. I don't want to hit a brick wall because I filed the clue I need under the wrong Smith.