The show's staff walked Kelly through the process of finding out more about this man. Indeed, he was a soldier in the Union Army, was captured, and was sent to the infamous Andersonville POW camp where about one-third of the prisoners died. However, Isaiah Rose survived and eventually escaped from the prison. While trying to find his way back to Union forces, Rose was shot by a Union soldier who mistook him for a Confederate soldier. Rose eventually recovered, returned to Ohio, and served many years as a local sheriff. He later became a state senator in Ohio.
At the end of the show, Kelly Clarkson visited the grave of her great-great-great-grandfather and discovered many other family members buried nearby.
I rather liked this episode. I felt it displayed a better view of "real genealogy" than did most of the previous "Who Do You Think You Are?" shows. Kelly Clarkson started out as a typical genealogy neophyte: she knew nothing about her ancestry and not a great deal about American history. While the show was obviously scripted in advance and the tears did turn on at the precise moment for maximum dramatic effect, Kelly Clarkson was led step-by-step through the process of how to find information about one particular person, using a combination of online resources and on-site visits to view original records. The show also portrayed the reality of searching the known records of one person at a time, instead of the superficial "here is your entire family tree" displayed in many of the previous years' episodes.
Kelly Clarkson obviously did not do the research herself. Instead, it was spoon-fed to her by professionals who had thoroughly researched every bit of the information in advance. Nonetheless, the steps that were shown on television struck me as being correct. Not all of us have the resources of a multi-million dollar television program's staff to do the research for us. Yet I felt that the process shown was correct, whether performed by one person acting alone or by the entire staff of a professional research team. It wan't perfect, but I felt it was better than the previous years' episodes.
I wasn't able to watch the broadcast at the scheduled time but my VCR had been programmed to record it at the appointed hour. I watched it a few hours later. I must say that I enjoyed watching this "time shifted" program far more than I ever liked watching the previous episiodes at the scheduled times. By pressing buttons on the remote, I was able to quickly skip all the mind-numbing commercials and the ridiculous repeats of all the previously-found information that is shown immediately after every commercial break. Best of all, I was able to watch and enjoy all the significant events in this one-hour program in about 30 minutes!
From now on, I don't think I will ever watch "Who Do You Think You Are?" at its scheduled time. It is far more pleasant and entertaining to later watch only the significant parts of the program and skip all the fluff, saving 30 minutes in the process. I am now looking forward to next week's episode and plan to watch it only in the improved, "condensed" manner offered by a DVR.
The Kelly Clarkson episode of "Who Do You Think You Are?" will probably be available soon on the Internet on TLC.com or on Hulu.com or on some other online video service. If you missed this week's episode, you probably will soon find it online. As soon as I can find it, I will publish the address of this week's episode.
In the meantime, you can learn more on TLC.com at http://www.tlc.com/tv-shows/who-do-you-think-you-are/about-the-show/about-the-show.htm and also on dozens of other web sites by starting at http://goo.gl/dzKG85.
UPDATE: Who Do You Think You Are? Season 4, Episode 1, is now available online for $1.99 from Amazon at http://goo.gl/gUpQ0v, on otvseries.com at http://otvseries.com/category/who-do-you-think-you-are for a fee (only for Windows computers after downloading a special viewer), as well as on Xfinity.com, DishNetwork.com, and other web sites of several commercial cable and satellite television providers who restrict access to their own (paid) customers.