A Responsible Response to "Roll Call!"

From: Gary Warner <glwarner@narrowgate.net&rt;
Subject: !Please Read! - A Responsible Response to "Roll Call!"
To: MISAGINA-L@rootsweb.com, roots-l@rootsweb.com

@ From: *******@aol.com
@ To: MISAGINA-L@rootsweb.com                                                       
@ Subject: Saginaw Roll Call
@ I think it would be a good idea if we had a roll call once a month 
@ for anyone new to the list and also as a reminder to the rest of us.

May I offer a perhaps useful alternative?

Unless there are many "email only" subscribers, I believe it would be 
useful for each of us to enter a detailed "knowledge" of our Saginaw 
families...not just the surname, ONE TIME, and send it to the
list.  Because the list is being archived, it then becomes a member 
of the permanent archives, which may be searched by any person at 
any time thereafter.

By having monthly "roll calls", this searchable database becomes 
cluttered to the point of being unusable.  If the list goes on for 
three years, with a monthly roll call, and an investigator is
interested in WARNER, for instance, he would see 36 messages from 
each of us researching WARNER, none of which will add value beyond 
the first.  Besides the fact that it is boring and tedious to
read and delete "roll call" responses.

Instead, take the time to enter enough data that your post is interesting, 
and would contain useful data for future researchers.  It is highly possible 
that in three years, you will not be reachable at the email address you 
are now using.  Think of the fact that you are possibly leaving a permanent
contribution to our universal memory.  

As opposed to saying:
Responding to Roll Call...
Contact: glwarner@narrowgate.net if interested

which will do noone any good once glwarner@narrowgate.net is no longer reachable, 
consider instead:

My name is Gary Warner, currently residing at 
2920 Clydebank Circle, Birmingham AL 35242.
One of the Saginaw families I am currently researching is that of PURDY.

In the 1920 census of Michigan, I have found my great grandfather 
enumerated as follows:

1920 Census MI

Lester Purdy
age 27, born MI (Father MI, Mother MI)
Assembler - Autoworks
1022 1/2 North Sixth, Saginaw, Saginaw

wife Tessie, age 24, born MI (Father ID, Mother OH)

Lester's wife Tessie was the daughter of Vern STRONG and Cora SANDERS,
enumerated in the 1920 census of Michigan as follows:

1920 Census MI
Vern Strong
age 51, born OH (Father OH, Mother OH)
Printer / News co.
825 Cherry, Saginaw, Saginaw

wife Cora, age 45, born IN (Father OH, Mother OH)
son  Earl, age 21, born MI
son  Carl, age 19, born MI
son  N.E., age 17, born MI
son Raymond, age 13, born MI
son Ernest, age 10, born MI

Gary Warner has in his possession a book called "Just Chips" which is 
poetry written by Vern Strong, and printed on the presses of the Saginaw News, 
where Vern worked for many years as a typesetter.  Lester and Tessie had a son 
named Vern after this Vern STRONG, and his son was also named Vern, after
his father.  Vern PURDY lived near the Dow Chemical plant in Michigan.

Do you see how one could be an annoying teaser, of value only to those who 
are also researching this family, and who have only been on the list one month?  
While the other could be a contribution to the body of data about Saginaw families, 
good to any current or future ROOTSWEB researcher?  (What would be better yet, 
is to spend the (possibly several hours) to provide sufficient narration to make
the post interesting!)  BE SURE TO INCLUDE YOUR SOURCES!

Please think about this before answering a "Roll Call" cry.  List Owners, 
you can facilitate this approach by including in your "greeting" mail for 
new list members, an explanation (or a pointer to an explanation) on how to 
search the ROOTSWEB mailing lists.  You could FURTHER facilitate this approach 
by working in coordination with a web developer and volunteers to your list 
to build a database of who is researching what.  For instance, would there 
be value to have a single GEDCOM file, maintained and searchable using IGM, 
which contained data which had been presented and documented on the list?

Listowners who would like assistance in setting something like this up are 
welcome to contact me for further discussion.  I am planning to do something 
like this with my requested-but-not-yet-created ROOTSWEB mailing lists, 

Thanks for your time,

Gary Warner