What do we really know about our ancestors? How much of their lives are missing from our knowledge, simply because of location?
I’m a good example. Born and raised in California, I will appear there on all five censuses from 1970 to 2010. In 2020, however, I will be found in Texas. Any of my descendants researching me strictly using census data would assume that I moved from California to Texas, and they will be WRONG! (In 2012, I moved to Delaware, and in six weeks will be heading south to be closer to family.)
Think of all the things that happen in ten years – births, marriages, deaths, divorces. When we jump to conclusions about an ancestors whereabouts, we will miss crucial details about their life’s events. My own relocations have made me re-examine some of my assumptions about my wandering ancestors, and I need to broaden the scope of my search into additional localities to crumble some brick walls.