Terms of use of this website

The Rainwater Collection represents countless hours of genealogical and historical research by Susan Chance-Rainwater and R. Steven Rainwater, as well as the contributions of many other researchers whose names are listed in the Source and Reference page. The information on this site is copyrighted, however you may freely use it for your own genealogical research provided you adhere to the following guidelines:

Creative Commons License
The Rainwater Collection is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License by Susan and Steve Rainwater.


Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Why did you create The Rainwater Collection?
    We created The Rainwater Collection to pick up where the printed newsletter, The Rainwater Researcher, left off. The newsletter ceased publication, in part, because the editor was having difficulty getting others to contribute articles. Printed quarterly, it required a regular input of new information. We felt that a distribution mechanism for Rainwater data was still needed, and the advantage of a website it that new content can be added at any time. Finally, we shared The Rainwater Researcher editor’s passion for a fact-based approach to genealogy.
  2. How do I use this website?
    That’s up to you. I strongly believe that doing the actual research yourself is part of the journey. My purpose is not to hand you the answer, but to make finding the answer possible.
  3. What happened to the database?
    The database is offline, and will probably never return. Fundamentally, it violated the site’s real purpose of providing uninterpreted raw data.
  4. Do you have any information on my ancestor?
    Possibly, but emailing this question should not be your first course of action. The website is the product of thousands of hours of research and contains documented records of nearly every kind. Kindly be willing to take more than five minutes reviewing the information available on the website before sending this question.
  5. Can I contribute to your website?
    We are happy to review well documented submissions, and under many circumstances, will include the information if it appears to be valid. However we make no promises about timeliness, and the final editorial judgement is ours. Please understand that information once given cannot be withdrawn for reasons other than accuracy.
  6. My relative told me an old family story that your website says is a myth. Are you calling my relative a liar?
    No, but I may believe your relative to be mistaken.
  7. I sent you an email. Why didn’t you answer it?
    To be honest, I answer only interesting, well-written emails. I don't bother with questions that you can answer for yourself by searching the site. I also make it a rule to ignore emails that are ungrammatical, unpunctuated, or improperly capitalized. If you want to be taken seriously as a researcher, learn to write.
  8. I am researching so-and-so. Do you have information to share?
    When you consider the quantity and quality of information I am already sharing through the website, this seems a particularly specious question.
  9. I am seeking a present-day relative or am adopted and seeking my natural parents. Can you help?
    I don’t have access to this kind of information. Such requests are better directed to a professional genealogist.
  10. A piece of information – name, date, whatever – listed in one of your transcriptions is wrong in the original document. Will you please correct it?
    Most emphatically, no. A transcription is a verbatim copying of an original document, mistakes and all. While I am happy to add a valid correction as a note, under no circumstances will I alter a transcription that I believe to be an accurate copy of the original.