Monday, September 1, 2008

Using FamilyTreeMaker 2008 - Post 22: Web Search I

I installed FamilyTreeMaker 2008 in early July and uploaded a large database to see how it worked. I also started a new database to test other program features. Please see the list at Using FamilyTreeMaker 2008 - Summary of Posts for all of the posts in this series.

In this post, I want to demonstrate how to find ancestral information using the Web Search icon featured on the top row of the FTM 2008 page. For this part of the series, I'm using my great-great-grandfather, Isaac Seaver (1823-1901), in my database as a starting point for these posts about Web Search.

Here is the [People] Family screen for Isaac Seaver. I am about to pick the [Web Search] icon from the top menu line:

Note that, in the left-hand panel, the choices for web searching are three The Generations Network sites -, and There are also three other search engines in Other Search Sites -, and

When you click on the [Web Search] icon, the default web site for searching is The screen below shows the Search box used for the search -note that "Exact matches only" is unchecked, and the name boxes, the birth year and location, and death year and location, are filled in based on information from the database.

The user can check the exact match box, modify the names, change or delete the dates and places, or click on Advanced Search. The Search function works just like you are on The Search function starts with the Old Ancestry Search box and format, not the New Ancestry Search function and format. Of course, you have to have an Ancestry subscription in order to see images!

I hit the Search button with the search choices in the fields. A popup window came up titled "Getting Data from Ancestry into your Tree," as shown in the screen below:

The box says:

"When searching Ancestry, results are presented as separate rows that can be selected. When you click on a row, the facts associated with the selected row are displayed in the right side of the lower pane, ready to be merged.

"You can merge the facts into your tree by clicking the Merge button. Along with the facts, Family tree Maker links source information to each fact. If the record has an associated image, such as a census image, it is linked to the source and merged into the Media Collection."

I read it and clicked on the "OK" button. The list of ranked matches from the search request has many hits -

The first four matches on the list (you can scroll down on the Ancestry results page) are for my Isaac Seaver (1823-1901). I clicked on the "View Image" link for 1900 U.S. census item at the top of the list. I received this screen:

The screen above contains the top of the 1900 U.S. census page that enumerates Isaac Seaver and his third wife (Malvina, listed as Elvina).

This process of finding historical data, family trees or stories and publications for a person in the FTM 2008 database is very straightforward, and works very well. It is very easy to add images to the FTM 2008 database using this feature.

In the next post, I will demonstrate how to merge a census image (or other image from into the database. I will deal with the other web sites on the Web Search list in a later post.

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