Re: The growing problem of erroneous captions

Douglas Harding <dharding@...>

Two weeks ago I was researching the M&StL at the Mercantile Library in St.
Louis, accessing the Barriger Collection. While going through John
Barriger's photo album of the M&StL photos, I noticed more than a few photo
captions contained errors. While these were not freight car photos, a person
using this collection as a first source of historic value, could come away
with incorrect information in their notes. I mentioned the errors to the
attendant, but had no way of correcting the captions. While I knew the
correct information for the M&StL, the experince made me suspicious of other
"facts" recorded for which I was not familiar. I know, you should always
double check and verify, but sometimes when doing historic research you only
have one source.

As to captions in books and magazines, as an author I have submitted
captions which were not used or edited to where I hardly recognized them. If
the person who does the finally proof reading does not know the subject
matter, well .....

Doug Harding

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