Some stories in history are found in printed sources and these are usually reliable. Others are family stories that have been passed down through the years and most likely have changed over time. Pay attention to these tales for somewhere hidden in there is the truth. Don't let these stories die. Write down even those that contradict others. Include the source of each. Perceptions help shape people's lives and affect the future. So try and get to the truth, just don't dismiss them.
Example: I was always told that my 2nd great grandfather brought the first Black Angus cow to America from Germany. In researching the Internet I found that my family wasn't the only one claiming fame to this bovine history.
Truth: He was the first to bring Black Angus cattle into the state of Wisconsin. He bought them at the Chicago Livestock Show and shipped them to Potosi. Further, I learned that they got out of the pen and some were found down at the creek and that it was quite the show to round them up.
My mother was a happy camper to finally know the real story. Happy hunting.