Fraudulent Genealogies

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Gustav Anjou is perhaps the most famous author of fraudulent genealogies. For more information about Anjou frauds, consult these sources:<br>  
 
Gustav Anjou is perhaps the most famous author of fraudulent genealogies. For more information about Anjou frauds, consult these sources:<br>  
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*Gordon L. Remington, "Gustave We Hardly Knew Ye: A Portrait of Herr Anjou as a Jungberg," ''Genealogical Journal'' (Utah Genealogical Association) 19, nos. 1-2 (1991). Identifies Anjou's real identity.<br>
  
 
*Kathi Reid, "[http://www.genhelp.org/?p=4 Caveat Emptor! Family Tree Forgeries]," ''Genealogy Help, ''genealogy blog ([http://www.genhelp.org www.genhelp.org]&nbsp;: accessed 22 October 2009); documents the discovery of a Gustav Anjou genealogy in her own family.
 
*Kathi Reid, "[http://www.genhelp.org/?p=4 Caveat Emptor! Family Tree Forgeries]," ''Genealogy Help, ''genealogy blog ([http://www.genhelp.org www.genhelp.org]&nbsp;: accessed 22 October 2009); documents the discovery of a Gustav Anjou genealogy in her own family.
  
*Harold Oliver, [ed.,] "[http://personal.linkline.com/xymox/fraud/fraud223.htm Fraudulent Lineages]," ''America's First Families'' ([http://personal.linkline.com/xymox http://personal.linkline.com/xymox]&nbsp;: 5 October 1998, accessed 22 October 2009); citing Robert Charles Anderson, CG, FASG, "We Wuz Robbed!" ''Genealogical Journal ''of the Utah Genealogical Association 19, nos. 1-2 (1991); lists known Anjou fraudulent genealogies among the holdings of the [[Family History Library]] by call number or film number.<br>
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*Robert Charles Anderson, CG, FASG, "We Wuz Robbed! The Modus Operandi of Gustave Anjou," ''Genealogical Journal'' (Utah Genealogical Association) 19, nos. 1-2 (1991). Describes the manner in which Anjou fabricated genealogies.<br>
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*Wikipedia contributors, "Gustave Anjou," ''Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia'' ([http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Gustave_Anjou&oldid=572101969 http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Gustave_Anjou&amp;oldid=572101969]&nbsp;: accessed 15 October 2013).<br>
  
Other frauds:
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=== Other frauds ===
  
 
*Myra Vanderpool Gormley, CG, "[http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~jcat2/myraarticle.html Grafting Family Trees]," ''Pierce Mothershead Family Ties, ''Jo Ann Miller ([http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.com/~jcat2 http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.com/~jcat2]&nbsp;: accessed 22 October 2009); citing ''RootsWeb Review: RootsWeb's Genealogy News'' 3, no. 17 (26 April 2000); archived online (www.rootsweb.com).<br>
 
*Myra Vanderpool Gormley, CG, "[http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~jcat2/myraarticle.html Grafting Family Trees]," ''Pierce Mothershead Family Ties, ''Jo Ann Miller ([http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.com/~jcat2 http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.com/~jcat2]&nbsp;: accessed 22 October 2009); citing ''RootsWeb Review: RootsWeb's Genealogy News'' 3, no. 17 (26 April 2000); archived online (www.rootsweb.com).<br>

Revision as of 17:55, 15 October 2013

Genealogy is affected by forgeries, fakes, and frauds. Numerous fraudulent genealogies are known to exist and can be found in any major genealogical library, online or off.

Armchair historians, family-tree climbers, and professionals are all among the guilty. Many are well-meaning folk who "just got carried away" by imagination, enthusiasm, or inexperience. Others are, yes, quite calculating in their deceit.[1]

As a result genealogy reseacher, Carmen J. Finley, warned that it is important to track down the original records cited in compiled genealogies. Carmen said,[2]

Serious genealogists know not to believe everything in print. Honest mistakes happen. The accuracy of published record abstracts depends on many factors... Even more difficult to detect can be the misguided alterations and deliberate deceptions by seemingly sincere authors who tamper with evidence or manufacture it outright. No researcher really wants to consider such a likelihood.

The Horn Papers

The Horn Papers were records of western Pennsylvania, southeastern Ohio, western Maryland, and northern West Virginia from 1765 to 1795. For more information, see:

  • Arthur P. Middleton and Douglass Adair, "The Mystery of the Horn Papers," William and Mary Quarterly, 3d ser., 4 (October 1947): 409-45; report proving the Horn Papers were a hoax.[1]
  • W. F. Horn, The Horn Papers: Early Westward Movement on the Monongahela and Upper Ohio, 1765-1795 (Scottsdale, Penn.: Herald Press for the Green County Historical Society, 1945); published copy of the Horn Papers.
  • Jane A. Leavell, "The Horn Papers," Jane's Story Page (http://littlecalamity.tripod.com/Genealogy/Horn.html : accessed 10 December 2009); includes a bibliography.

Gustav Anjou

Gustav Anjou is perhaps the most famous author of fraudulent genealogies. For more information about Anjou frauds, consult these sources:

  • Gordon L. Remington, "Gustave We Hardly Knew Ye: A Portrait of Herr Anjou as a Jungberg," Genealogical Journal (Utah Genealogical Association) 19, nos. 1-2 (1991). Identifies Anjou's real identity.
  • Robert Charles Anderson, CG, FASG, "We Wuz Robbed! The Modus Operandi of Gustave Anjou," Genealogical Journal (Utah Genealogical Association) 19, nos. 1-2 (1991). Describes the manner in which Anjou fabricated genealogies.

Other frauds

  • Oliver, "Genealogy Frauds," America's First Families; several more articles in addition to "Fraudulent Lineages."
  • James Pylant, "Watch Out for Fake Family Trees,"GenealogyMagazine.com (www.genealogymagazine.com : accessed 26 October 2009); Reverend W. Twyman Williams exposes fraudulent French ancestry of Chrétien DuBois, Gary B. and Elizabeth Shown Mills discover fraud, and George L. Nichols concludes Leon Nelson Nichols work is fictional.
  • Carmen J. Finley, Ph.D., CG. "Checking the Authenticity of Cited Documents: A Finley-Hess Hoodwink in Colonial Pennsylvania." National Genealogical Society Quarterly 87 (1999): 295.


  1. 1.0 1.1 Gary B. Mills and Elizabeth Shown Mills, "Hoodwinks, Tomfoolery, and Fakelore," National Genealogical Society Quarterly 87 (1999): 259.
  2. Carmen J. Finley, Ph.D., CG, "Checking the Authenticity of Cited Documents: A Finley-Hess Hoodwink in Colonial Pennsylvania," National Genealogical Society Quarterly 87 (1999): 295.