Most of my ancestors were farmers. Hence, most family events before the 20th Century occurred on the family farm - including births, marriages and deaths. This has proved to be one of the more difficult sourcing challenges I've experienced over the years. Let me explain:
When I first started doing genealogy I would include the nearest town as the place of residence. For instance, a baby born on the family farm in San Joaquin County, California was written as occurring in Woodbridge, San Joaquin, California because that was the closest community to where they lived.
However, it dawned on me fairly quickly that this wasn't the right way to do things because the event never actually happened within the city limits of any town. So, from then on whenever an event on a family farm needed to be recorded, I would just put county and state (i.e. Isabella County, Michigan). More than anything, this was just a band-aid until I could come up with a permanent way of recording these events.
Now I'm cleaning up my family tree and this is a problem I'm once again faced with. Do I stick with what I've done, county and state, or do I go a different route? My concern since the beginning is that county and state just isn't enough information, and also that future generations won't know if I didn't know the town or if the event really did happen in a rural area. But what alternatives are there? The only one I can think of (and have used recently on a trial basis) is by putting "rural" or "farm" in place of a town, for instance: "Rural area, Marshall, Indiana."
How do you record events that did not happen within a community's jurisdiction? This inquiring mind wants to know.