Wednesday, March 31, 2010

How to Source a Baptismal Record

After a visit to a church, I found a copy of a of a Baptismal Certificate, in the Church books. How do I record that?

Please note: a Source, in Family Tree Maker is an artifact, book, document, film, person, recording, website, etc., from which information is obtained. The Source-Citation is where in the Source the information was found.

The first step would be to go to the Source Workspace, and on the right click on Add:

 The next screen, you will select New, since this a new Source for this file:

To select the appropriate Template for this Source, this is the screen that will be presented:

The next thing to do, is to note the Source Repository.For this example, I have a copy of the Baptismal Certificate, so the repository is in my files.

So, New is selected, which will bring up the following screen:

At this point, just fill in the blanks on this screen.

The Repository field has now been filled in. Now, click on the More button on the Right:

This is where the Template is Selected. The Source Group is Church Records. The Category is Church Books, as that is where the document was found, and that original record is held by the Church, so that is the Template Selected.

Clicking on OK, will bring up the Template to be completed. The Source Template is filled in. The book that was looked at was at St. Mary's Church in Windber, PA. The Record Book is recorded, the Repository is selected from the pull down menu,  and the comment is made that a paper copy is in the family file.

At this point, the completed template form indicates where the information came from and where a copy is now.

Clicking on OK will bring up the Source-Citation information screen. The Source Title is presented, and the Repository is completed. This Baptismal Record was a form attached to Page 74 and it listed the Parents, God Parents, and Clergy. The Citation Detail was entered (where in that book) and the text or summary of what was there is entered in the Citation Text.

Clicking OK will return you to the Source Workspace. Selecting the Source that was just entered, will present the Source-Citation Information.

Now, it's time to use that Source-Citation. Going to the People Workspace and selecting the person who is listed on that Baptismal Record and using the Person Tab, the list of Facts are seen. Since the Certificate had her name, the Name Fact is selected.

Since we want to add a Source-Citation to the Name Fact, the down arrow next to the New button is selected, or the use of the Control (CTRL) Key and the letter "S", will take you to where you select the Source-Citation. If that Source-Citation is used in subsequent People and Facts, use Existing Source Citation would be selected.

 From here, you select the Source Title from the Pull down menu to the right of the Source title.

Here is where you would enter specific information for this individual from this Source..

The Source-Citation has been completed. Below is what the Family Group Sheet would look like, if the Items to Include had a Check Mark in the Sources box for the Family Group Sheet.

 Family Group Sheets are found in the Publish Workspace, Relationship Reports, from in the list under Publication Types.

© 2010, copyright H R Worthington

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Your "Family Tree Maker 2010 Advanced Topics" webinar has been rescheduled.

Your "Family Tree Maker 2010 Advanced Topics" webinar has been rescheduled.
New Date: Wednesday, May 19, 2010
Time: 8:00 PM Eastern (New York)
Duration: 60 minutes
Thank you for registering for the March 24th Advanced Topics webinar. Unfortunately, we have had to reschedule this webinar for May 19th. Because you have already registered, you will be automatically enrolled in the May 19th webinar; you don’t need to re-register. In the next month, we’ll be sending you more information about the webinar in May. We apologize for any inconvenience this causes and hope that you’ll be able to join us. The Family Tree Maker team
This presentation is designed to be viewed using a high-speed internet connection. If you will be using a dial-up connection, you will not be able to view this webcast. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.
—The Webinar Team

© 2010, copyright H R Worthington

Friday, March 12, 2010

Family Tree Maker Webinar on March 24th

Family Tree Maker Webinar on March 24th

from Blog by Tana L. Pedersen
If you’ve mastered the basics of Family Tree Maker and you’re ready to learn more, join us for a free webinar on March 24th at 8:00 pm Eastern Daylight Time. Watch as the experts demonstrate some of the advanced features available in Family Tree Maker 2010. You’ll learn how to work with the Web Merge feature, resolve unidentified place names, export different branches of your family tree, and much more.

To attend the Advanced Topics webinar, click Advanced Topics here to register.

And if you have questions you’d like answered, please enter them in the Comments section below. We’ll try to respond to them during the webinar or on the blog. (Please limit your questions to functionality
available in Family Tree Maker 2010.) We appreciate your questions and
look forward to talking to you soon. Thanks!

Have you missed past webinars? You can view them any time at

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Who Do You Think You Are? - The Book



Megan Smolenyak
Chief Genealogical Consultant

The day before the TV Series, Who Do You Think You Are? was aired, this book released in a local bookstore. Having watched the media build up to the TV Series, hints about a book was showing up, at least on Facebook and Twitter. Having seen Megan at a genealogy conference and watching many of the Roots Television online videos, I had to get this book. So, I checked, online, to see if my local book store had the book in stock. It did, so I traveled over to pick a copy up. Not seeing it "out", I went to the "genealogy" section (a book shelf of books) and didn't find it there. So, I asked a very nice customer service representative to see if she knew where the book was. She went to the same place that I did, but then I mentioned that it had just been released that day. She said "be right back" and she was, with 5 copies in hand.

Taking the book home, but having a meeting to go to, I handed the book to my wife, also doing her family research, while I got ready to walk out the door. Laughter erupted in the living room within seconds of her opening the book. Oops, it will be a while before I get to see my book again. But, she is a quick reader, so I got it back the next day.

Going forward, on this Blog, I hope to share how I use the Family Tree Maker program as I read this book with this new source of knowledge. I am sure that the Book will help sharpen my research skills, documentation of the findings, and sharing of the results.

Stay tuned.

Who Do You Think You Are? - The Program

There have been a number of Genea-Bloggers commenting on the first viewing of new TV Series Who Do You Think You Are?

There are over 900 Genea-Bloggers as of this post. You can find them here: Genealogy Blog Roll

I read many of them every day to learn how they, the Genea-Bloggers do their Family Research. This blog was created to help share how the Family Tree Maker program (Version 2008 and newer) works and can be used to support our research. Over time, I hope to see and explore the Family Tree Maker program to help with the research and the sharing of the information that is found along the way.

I have read a number of the reviews by the Genea-Bloggers already and each of them is worth the time to read. Initially, I was not going to post a blog but started to post a comment on one of the reviews. After I started, I figured that I may have my own views of this TV program. So, I am adding my two cents.

I do not consider myself a genealogist, but am very interested in collecting / researching on who my ancestors were. What is my family history? I started to just ‘collect’ the names, and cite my sources, but realized by “hanging out” with Genea-Bloggers online, participating in some of the Blog themes, and having the honor of meeting some of them over the past year.

This group of awesome folk, have changed my mind as to what this “hobby” is really about. Its more about creating a Family History. Collecting, not names, but stories, and telling those stories.

This first episode of Who Do You Think You Are? was a great reminder of the journey that I am on with great hints on how to do some of this work.

What I liked about the first show, and hope it continues, is the Balance of information in it’s presentation.

I think those of us who do Family Research can say “been there, done that”. For example: The Genea-Blogger himself, Thomas MacEntee posted this thoughts on the Destination: Austin Family Blog. Randy Seaver of Genea-Musing, posting his comments and there are many others.

The more experienced picked up some of the details of the hobby. Such as the lack of use of Gloves when handling some important documents and having to wait for something to be provided. However, is that a real issue or is there some controversy on the use of white gloves in handling of these documents?

Having watched the PBS program, Faces of America and the BYU program, The Generations Project, it was interesting how this program differed and how they were the same.

Here is some of what I learned / relearned from this first episode of Who Do You Think You Are? (WDYTYA)

Sarah Jessica Parker started by talking to her mother and picked up some basic, starting information.

Lesson 1:

Start with the immediate family and collect information. Listen for names, dates, places, and the stories, really listen to the stories.

Lesson 2:

After collecting the information, don’t dismiss the information and don’t jump conclusions based on that information.

Follow up on the Stories and look for documentation that may help prove or disprove the stories. In this program, Sarah Jessica Program went to her home town in Ohio and looked at some census records. In this piece of the show, there was some conflicting information, a death date in one year and a census record of the same person in the following year.

But as TV shows go, we saw a very short clip of what went on in Ohio and can only guess as to how much work, time and people it took to give us that short clip.

Lession 3:

What do you do with Conflicting information? Simple, follow up. Document where we found our information, recognize the differences, then find where you might find the resolution to the conflict.

Going from Ohio to California helped clarify (resolve) the conflicting information.

The piece that hit home for me, was the “Gold Rush”. I have copies of letters from ancestors who were on the Oregon Trail to their relatives “back home”.

The next stop was New England to find a link, like to the trip to California, to see how the family tied into the history of our country.

Lesson 4:

Don’t be shocked about what you might find, but don’t jump to conclusions too quickly. Earlier in the show, Ms. Parker and her brother talked about how long they thought the family had been in the US. While in Ohio, there was an indication that one of the surnames had a connection to New England. Picking up on that “hint” we were taken to Boston, where the Salem Witch Trial was introduced. The reaction to this revelation was priceless.

Like the trip to California to clarify a conflict in information, knowing a little more history of the Trials a less shocking conclusion was reached.

Lesson 5:

Share your findings. The episode ended when Sarah Jessica Parker returned home to re-visit her mother, to share her findings, and the stories.

I learned a lot, confirmed what I thought, and encouraged me to continue to do research. I didn’t watch the program to be taught how to “do genealogy”, but to pick up some of the clues.

Perhaps the show was to draw of the non-genealogist into doing Family research. Several Twitter messages, following the show, indicated that some other family members were showing interest in genealogy. I am guessing that some genealogy websites had some increased internet traffic.

Besides the balance in presentation between folks that do family research and to the non-genealogist, it was the Reaction to the Findings that “can’t be made up”. Actress, yes, but think that her reactions on the screen were real.
Looking forward to next weeks episode.

Here is a link to the NBC Website with some Video’s of the programs:

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Behind the Scenes of "Who Do You Think You Are?" - Sarah Jessica Parker

A message from

An hour doesn’t offer much time to delve into the research processes that genealogists used as they traced the family history of actress Sarah Jessica Parker for this week’s episode of Who Do You Think You Are? We sat down with the research team who worked on Sarah Jessica’s family tree to talk about what it took to find her elusive gold miner ancestor. I’ve recapped that conversation here:

First Steps First
Similar to Sarah Jessica Parker’s own assumptions at the beginning of the show, research on the tree began with vague ideas that her family was comprised of recent immigrants. The team first developed a skeleton of Sarah Jessica’s family history. “We documented every connection and every life event for her ancestors,” says Natalie Cottrill of ProGenealogists, who appeared with Sarah Jessica in the episode, “finding information about Sarah Jessica’s family in court records, newspaper articles, books, and personal letters published in books.” And that’s how they found John S. Hodge.

The First Nugget
The first clue about John S. Hodge’s life came from his son’s obituary, which stated that John S. Hodge died in 1849 on his way to California from Ohio. Since the death date came from an obituary written decades after John S. Hodge died, the team looked for primary sources recorded during or around the anticipated lifespan for John S. Hodge. For starters, the team wanted to determine why the ancestral John S. Hodge was going to California, as the son’s obituary stated. Considering the time period – 1849 – it seemed probable that John S. Hodge could have been heading to the California gold fields.

The Right John?
The search led to a John Hodge, who was the right age to be Sarah Jessica’s ancestor, listed as a miner in the 1850 U.S. Federal Census for El Dorado County, California. This record shifted research to determining whether the California John Hodge was the ancestral John S. Hodge, and the researchers turned to records associated with the 49ers. “We found a letter written by someone in Ohio to John S. Hodge, which had been published in a book,” says Natalie. “One of my colleagues tracked down the original set of letters, which provided more details, including information about John S. Hodge’s 1950 death.” Estate and other documents further confirmed that the ancestral John S. Hodge and the California miner John Hodge was the same individual.

If you missed the Sarah Jessica Parker episode of Who Do You Think You Are?, you can watch full episodes online at And you won't want to miss former NFL football player Emmitt Smith set out to discover his slavery roots this Friday, March 12, at 8/7c on NBC. Lisa Kudrow said his episode is the most compelling of the seven (and, personally, I have to agree). Check out the teaser to the episode featuring Emmitt.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Who Do You Think You Are? Almost Here

Can you believe the Who Do You Think You Are? premiere is almost here?! The show kicks off this Friday with an episode featuring “Sex and the City” star Sarah Jessica Parker.

Who Do You Think You Are? in the News
In the coming weeks, Who Do You Think You Are? is going to be spotlighted in several major media outlets. Among them, Oprah will designate an entire hour to family history next Tuesday!

Here’s a list of a few shows to watch for (all dates/times are subject to change):
·        Wednesday, March 3 (today!)
o       Today Show (NBC)
o       The View (ABC – check your local TV listings)
o       The Joy Behar Show (HLN – Headline News) – 9 pm ET
·        Friday, March 5
o       Today Show (NBC) – 10-11 am
·        Monday, March 8
o       Martha Stewart (check your local TV listings)
·        Tuesday, March 9
o       Oprah (check your local TV listings)
o       Craig Ferguson (CBS late night)
·        Friday, March 19
o       Bonnie Hunt (check your local TV listings)

Episode Schedule
In case you’re curious about the celebrity line up and dates for the episodes, here is the current schedule:
  • March 5 – Sarah Jessica Parker
  • March 12 – Emmitt Smith
  • March 19 – Lisa Kudrow
  • March 26 – Matthew Broderick
  • April 2 – Brooke Shields
  • April 9 – Susan Sarandon
  • April 23 – Spike Lee

And don’t forget to tune in on NBC this Friday, March 5 at 8/7c to see if Sarah Jessica Parker traces her roots back to ancestors who participated in Salem Witch Trials.

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