Showing posts with label 2012PeoplePersonFacts. Show all posts
Showing posts with label 2012PeoplePersonFacts. Show all posts

Friday, August 24, 2012

Do You Source Your Person's Name? Spouses? Parents?

Genea-Blogger, Randy Seaver posted this today:

Do You Source Your Person's Name? Spouses? Parents?

I would hope that you read his blog, and specifically this post. I had watched the same Webinar by Geoff, came away with a different question, but that's for another blog post.

Since I started my family research, I have cited every piece of data in my file. I should say try to. Much earlier versions of Family Tree Maker, we couldn't cite everything. (and I mean much earlier versions). As I have been cleaning up my database, I am cleaning this up as well. My Undocumented Fact Report is still long.

Anyway, Randy asked about Names, and Relationships. I'll add two additional Facts, to Cite or Not to Cite AND not to cite, Sex, and Person ID's.

Citing of Names:

As I research, names appear in the documents or records in many ways. I found it important for me, to record what i see and Cite my sources. It has paid off over time. For example:

You will see that I have found 6, actually 5, different ways for this name to appear in records. the 2nd item has 12 Citations associated with that name. You will see that the "preferred" name has NO citations. I have yet, to find a document that spells out his name completely. However, looking at the other 5 "name" facts, I can determine that the Preferred Name is correct. That zero (0) reminds me that it is an undocumented Fact, but I want that name to appear in Charts and Report as his default name.

Looking at that 2nd entry, selecting it and looking in the Citation list:

In the right hand panel, is that list of 12 Citations. Selecting any of those citations, you will find that the name is shown as is reflected in the Name Fact that is selected.

For example, the 1930 Census record has an Image linked to the Citation:

In this specific case. the name is listed there twice. Looking to the right, the age of the person would be the key. The 3rd line is the name as reported in the database. His father, the 1st line is listed the same way on his record.

This has helped me identify a number of people, based on how they were recorded in the various records. If I question the spelling of the name, I can check the Source, using the Citation and will see exactly what I recorded.

I did a study for a person with the name Ridgely Howard. That is how it was initially reported. After looking at a number of records, I found D. R. Howard, David Howard, David R Howard, and finally David Ridgely Howard. We they the same person, yes, but I did look at the citations a number of times to see what other information and relationships were in that record to help determine I had the right person.

How to reflect Relationships:

One of those tools was how to record relationships. Clearly the 1930 Census record (above) shows the Head of Household and the Son. So, how do I record that in FTM2012. First, here is what Ancestry showed me, before I looked at the Census Image itself.

How, that doesn't reflect relationships, but it does reflect the make up of the Household. I will highlight, from the Name: at the top part of that page, down to the age of the last person on the list. AND I will Print that page to right on it. I then hit CTRL+C, the Control Key and the letter C, to Copy that information. I return to FTM2012 and Paste (CTRL+V) that into the Residence Fact for 1930, NOTEs Tab.

I format or line up the information to make is clearer, then I return to the Census Image. From the Image, I pick up and write on the printed page, the Relationships, and other information that I capture from that Census Record by writing that on the printed page. I return to FTM2012 and type in the relationships next to the names. I will also record all other facts that I have determined or need for each record type.

His helps be set up or the way that I understand the relationships found in these documents. I am only using a Census Record for this example.

Note: If the household has a name that I don't have in my file, and the census record indicates that the person is "not family" I don't record that person. In one case, I did record a non-relative, as that person stayed with the family for several decades.

Having this data in the Notes for the fact, makes it very easy to help identify the relationships, and, in the case, the Source backs that relations up.

Citing Sex:

Is this important? To me it is, especially if the "name" could be Male or Female or the name, to me, does not lead me to the sex of the person. Of course, many records do not reflect sex, so I only cite the sex of the person when it is in the record.

Citing Person ID's:

I my file, I had assigned Reference ID for my Direct Line of Ancestors. That started many versions ago. The Citing was not important, nor did was have the ability to cite them. In FTM2012, those manually assigned Reference IDs are now PersonID's. Since I assigned them, I created a Citation to indicate that I assigned that Person ID #.

I have a "lock" or Marked as Private, the Person ID, as I don't want it displayed in the Ancestry Member Tree that is linked to this file. It is for my purposes.

The program generated Person ID's are NOT cited, as it is a program generated number.

This is what as worked for me.

 Thank you Randy !!!


Copyright © 2012 by H R Worthington

Thursday, May 24, 2012

How I work with the Burial Fact

Earlier, I posted a blog about How I Track Headstone Pictures.

I thought that I would offer how I handle the Burial Fact from information from the Find-A-Grave resource. is now providing us Hints from Find-A-Grave. I really like that feature. But, what do I do with that information.

I get a hint that points me to the Find-A-Grave website. Selecting the hint, we are taken to this type of screen. It is clear, that clicking on the links will take us to another website, not There are several other hints that do the same thing. But, for this post, I am going to continue to Find-A-Grave.

Clicking on the Go to Website ICON, a pop-up window will appear. It's a reminder (Are you sure) that you are leaving There is a check box, so that you won't see this again, AND a way to Cancel this operation.

Proceeding to the Find-A-Grave memorial for this person. There are links to other family members, data that I might want in my file, and an image of the Headstone. (that was the topic of the earlier blog post:

How I Track Headstone Pictures.

In this specific case, I created this memorial and it's my picture. But what am I going to do with this information. I will Hi-Light (select) from the Name, down to the Find-A-Grave Memorial Number. I want this information into my file.

Up until this point, I have been Pasting that information into the Notes Section for that person.  In reviewing the Notes on many people, I had been putting a lot of information that is Fact Specific, into the Notes. I realized that this was cluttering up the Notes, where Stories can be told. For example, I have a lot of Social Security information that was gathered from the "old" SSDI CDs that I have. That data, does not belong in the Notes, at least for me. 

So, where should this type of data go?

As mentioned in the earlier post, I mentioned that I created a Find-A-Grave Fact. (this is the same thing that I am now doing for SSDI information). I copied that information, hit CTRL+X (Cut) and move to the Find-A-Grave FACT, NOTES section, where it is Pasted.

This is just moving the information from the Notes for the Person, to the Notes for the FACT.

Since this information is for MY research, and don't want it to be in my Ancestry Member Tree, I Privatize the Find-A-Grave Fact. Selecting Options, and Mark as Private.

That will put a Lock ICON to the Left of the Find-A-Grave FACT.

As is my practice, before I make any major change to how I handle information, I wanted to run a Report to see what it would look like. I have a Burial Custom Report, where I can generate it to take with me to a Cemetery. I have the report sorted by the Burial FACT PLACE, then by Description. This will let me group Cemeteries by location, for those Places with multiple cemeteries. The Filter-In / Filter-Out feature will help control this.

The nice thing for me, is that I can now go back to this cemetery and KNOW who I can confirm are buried there AND are on the Find-A-Grave website, AND know who is NOT on Find-A-Grave website. So the next trip, I'll take pictures for myself and for Find-A-Grave for others.

I am now cleaning up my Find-A-Grave notes.

In another Blog, I give more details.

One way to do a Find-A-Grave Cemetery Visit


Headstone Collection and Find-A-Grave


Copyright © 2012 by H R Worthington

Saturday, December 3, 2011

File Sharing and Brick Walls - Part 16 - Notes to Description

Discovered another Clean Up issue, when importing a GEDCOM file into FTM2012. The issue is the difference of opinion on where certain information goes and how many fields are associated with a Fact or Event. I will NOT get into any finger pointing, only that when a GEDCOM file is imported, and the probably goes between any genealogy software program receiving or sending a GEDCOM file.

The specific issue here is a Burial Fact. In Family Tree Maker there are three fields. Date, Place, and Description. The GEDCOM that was imported had another field, apparently, called Address.

Family Tree Maker wants us to enter the Cemetery Name into the Description field. This has been true for many previous versions of FTM, probably back to version 4, when we separated the Place and Description with a slash. Place / Description.

When reviewing the file, there were a number of Facts with Notes. Opening the Notes as a note like: Address Woodlawn Cemetery.

There is a "1" in the third column on the Left and selecting the Notes tab, is the "Address: Woodlawn Cemetery.

In this Blog Post: How to create a Cemetery Listing. I showed how to create a Cemetery Report and that the Cemetery Name comes from the Description field. So, it is important to me to move that Cemetery Name from the Burial Notes field to the Burial Description Field.

Copy and Paste Cemetery Name and remove the word Address from the notes field, as, in this specific case, want the Notes number to be zero.

Now the Cemetery Report will provide the cemetery name.

Lesson Learned: Check the Notes following the importing of a GEDCOM file as there may be information that needs to be moved into the Description field for a Fact in Family Tree Maker.

Copyright © 2011 by H R Worthington

Saturday, November 26, 2011

File Sharing and Brick Walls - Part 9 - Burial Fact

While cleaning up the import of the GEDCOM file, I noted that there were not Cemeteries Listed. There were hints in the notes, that there were some Burial's where the cemetery was known. I for one, use burial information, as some headstones can provide clues to my research.

There was also a number of persons who had Notes for the Burial Fact.

Having done some testing in this area (GEDCOM between Roots Magic 4 and Family Tree Maker) I thought I knew what the problem was.

Take for example this entry:

It is noted that in the third column of numbers on the Burial Fact, there is a "1". That means that there is a Note for this Burial Fact.

Secondly, the Burial Fact, in the RH Panel only shows two fields, Date, and Place. Looking an the Help Menu in Family Tree Maker, it says:

If you have imported all or portions of your tree, you may need to edit many facts to correct information. For example, you may have recorded cemeteries in the Place field of the Burial fact. You can easily move the cemetery information to the Description field using the Fact Data Options dialog box.

So, we need to look at or Add the Description field for the Name of the Cemetery.

The advantage here is the ability to generate a Cemetery Report. I talked about there here:

How To Generate an Address Report

To change the Fact Properties, select the Fact, then Options, and in the Drop Down menu, Fact Properties.



The current Burial Fact Properties only will display Date / Place. Selecting Date / Place / Description will add the Description field.

Please note, that within FTM2012, the ability to Edit the Fact Sentence was added. Will leave that along for the moment.

The Description field was added, but there was no information in that field. Remembering my experience with Roots Magic 4 last year, I remembered that RM4 and FTM2011 don't "agree" on what do do with the Name of the Cemetery. RM4 uses an Address Field, while Family Tree Maker, according to the Help Menu uses the Description field for that. The Cemetery Report shows the advantage for that.

Noting that there is a "1" in the Notes column and selecting the Notes Tab, the "address" field and cemetery name is listed. Another Clean up task for this person. That is, moving the Nates information into the Description Field. Copy and Paste will do that.

A follow up post will describe how to generate a Custom Report to Identify what needs to be cleaned up.

Lesson Learned: How different genealogy programs handle the Burial Fact and where the Name of the Cemetery will appear.

I'll let Randy show the Roots Magic 4 View of the Burial Fact, if he so chooses.

Copyright © 2011 by H R Worthington

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Civil War Pension - Blog Response

This is in response to a Blog post by my friend Randy Seaver:

Exploring Family Tree Maker 2012 - Post 22: Creating a Civil War Pension File Source

This is part of a series of blog posts in an effort to help us understand how to use FTM2012. As you may know, it has been frustrating at times, and in the area of Source / Citations, I would guess frustrating isn't the right word.

Here is my take on this topic of dealing with Civil War files and not in response to Randy's very fine Blog.

In another Blog, not on Family Tree Maker, I told of my search for a Civil War hero using the Inferential Genealogy that Dr. Thomas Jones has described are conferences and in a video series on Family Search.

I am not sure that there is a right way, nor a wrong way of recording what we find on any of our Ancestors, especially our Hero's. I am only going to talk about how I do some of this recording.

We, as users, will have our own ways of doing this recording of information. I ask myself:

  • What Facts do I want to use AND Why? 
  • What does out data look like on Output?
With all of our choices what makes sense.

  • What do I want to capture?
  • What do I want to Share?
Having been working on a couple of Civil War soldiers, I thought about the questions above.

The limitless number of Facts that we have, and that we can have "Alt" Facts, or the multiple Facts that we can have, what makes sense for reports for myself and what might I want to share with others. There are some limitations, but what information do I want to use for my analysis and what do I need to try to tell the story of this hero.

I tend to record "just the facts" and where I found the Facts. I have a gentlemen in my file with 20 pages of Civil War Records, another with 30. So I captured his Civil War Journey, in fact I am still adding facts for the Military Service Fact. I am working on a timeline for his unit, with dates and places of battles that his unit participated in. All of that to say, that I use the Military Service Fact for the information from his Civil War records with one Source, a number of Citations, referring to pages within that record.

I consider the Military Service Fact for my information in helping me try to put the story together. The SmartStory feature I will probably use, and have used in the base. But the Notes Section for the person is where most of the story will be documented.

Here is a link to an earlier post for a Revolutionary War Hero.

Family Tree Maker 2011 - Smart Stories

Oh, but the Notes do not allow for Citations. But, what I do is to type in a Citation, that makes sense to me, and not in the Evidence Explained! format, but enough information. For example:

First and Second Maryland Infantry
Muster Rolls
Page 444


Pvt. Co. A, 2nd Md. Inf. b. 1844. Res. of Baltimore. Enl. Richmond 8/21/62 age 18. WIA (flesh wound to thigh) Gettysburg 7/3/63. Paid 7/17/63. Ab. wounded in Charlottesville hospital 8/14-17/63. Transf. Richmond hospital. Returned to duty 9/63. Paid 1/11/64. Present 3/31/64. WIA (upper portion of right thigh amputated) Weldon R.T. 8/19/65. Ab. wounded in Richmond hospital 8/21/64. Retired to Invalid Corps 12/24/64. Paroled Charlottesville 5/1/65. Member, Army & Navy Society, Maryland Line Association 1910, res of Baltimore. d. 12/23/27. Bur. Green Mount Cem. Brother of James McHenry Howard, 1st Md. Inf.

I already have a Citation for this document, for each of the facts that I took from the above paragraph. I normally will show these Notes when I share my research. If I were to generate a report, I would only reflect the Preferred Facts and not all of the Facts that I have collected. I think that the reader of the report is not as interested in how many Military Service Facts I have, but only the Preferred Fact which is

Bet 21 Aug 1862 - 01 May 1965 - 1st Maryland Infantry - CSA

The above documented summary is exactly the information that I found in the 20 pages from his Civil War Records. In fact, I am still inputting that data.

Back to my questions:
  • What Facts do I want to use AND Why? 
  • What does out data look like on Output?
The basic, normal facts that the reader can understand, using the Clearest and Preferred Fact and the Notes. I know which Facts help me with research but don't display all of the Alt Facts that I have. Those facts help be determine the Preferred Facts. I am also concerned about the reader.

In reality, I would put this information into a book on this Hero, using the Book feature of Family Tree Maker and would include a Bibliography. I doing usually include EndNotes in reports, but in the Book feature, I have a statement that if the reader would like the EndNotes, I can generate that, because I understand the need for them. But, my family really doesn't care. They want the Story, not how I got the Story.

To show the Timeline of his Military Service, this is what is in FTM2012:

Each of these facts have Citations.

Copyright © 2011 by H R Worthington

Monday, September 26, 2011

FTM2012 vs AMT - Facts

In the Knowledge Base article on the differences between FTM2012 and AMT, I had to look carefully at this statement:

In general fact dates, names, places, and descriptions (including custom and alternate facts) are the same in Family Tree Maker and Ancestry trees. However, you may find that some fact types are labeled differently. For example, the Physical Description fact in Family Tree Maker is the Description fact in Ancestry trees.

It was the Example that through be off a little. But, a picture or two says it all.

In FTM2012, you can add a Physical Description as a Fact for a person. As with each Fact, you can have a Date, a Place, and a Description for that Fact.

The same Fact when created in AMT would be:

From what I can tell, that is what this Knowledge Base article is talking about. I am sure that there are other examples.

For further details of the Differences between Family Tree Maker 2012 and an Ancestry Member Tree, please visit the Knowledge Base article #5359 What are the differences between the Family Tree Maker and trees when using TreeSync™?

Copyright © 2011 by H R Worthington

Saturday, September 24, 2011

How to Copy and Paste a Citation

I don't know about you, but I try to put Citations on all of the data that I put into my file. I routinely review my Facts to make sure that they all have Citations. To review them, go to the People Workspace, Person Tab. On the Right side of the list of Facts are three columns of numbers.

Column 1 is the number of Citations that you have for that fact

Column 2 is the number of Media Files associated with the Fact or Citation

Column 3 is the number of Notes that you have for that Fact

If there is a "0" in that first column, there isn't a Citation for that fact.

Lets say that you know where that information came from (Source) and you already have it entered, but on a different Fact, then the process is simple.

Just to the right of the "new", with Sources selected is the Copy Citation ICON. The citation that is selected will now be Copied.

Returning to the Fact without a Citation, selecting that Pull Down menu, on the right of "new", is the Paste Duplicate Source Citation.

That Citation will now be associated with that Fact.

Copyright © 2011 by H R Worthington

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