Friday, April 13, 2012

Creating a 1940 U.S. Census Source Citation in Family Tree Maker 2012

To my knowledge, a specific 1940 U.S. Census source citation has not been included in the Family Tree Maker 2012 genealogy program.  

However, the program already has at least five source citation templates in place that can be used for digital images found on a website like Ancestry.com. I used all five of them, adding content to the source and citation fields provided, to create the resulting source citations for my father's 1940 census record:

1)  Population Schedules - United States, 1880–1930 (by Census Year):

1940 U.S. census, population schedule, NARA microfilm publication T627, Roll 1651, Massachusetts, Worcester County, Leominster, enumeration district (ED) 14-160, sheet 6-B, family 113, Bowers A. Fisher household; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com).

2)  Population Schedule - United States, 1880-1930 (by Census Year and Location):

1940 U.S. census, population schedule, Massachusetts, Worcester, Leominster, enumeration district (ED) 14-160, sheet 6-B, family 113, Bowers A. Fisher household, accessed 12 Apr 2012; NARA microfilm publication T627, roll 1651; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com).

3)  Online Commercial Site - Generic (Census, Digital Image by Census Year):

1940 census of United States, Massachusetts, Worcester County, Leominster, enumeration district (ED) 14-160, sheet 6-B, family 113, Bowers A. Fisher household, accessed 12 Apr 2012; citing National Archives and Records Administration microfilm T627, roll 1651; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com).

4)  Online Commercial Site - Generic (Census, Digital Image by Year and Location):

1940 census of United States, Population schedule, Leominster, Worcester, Massachusetts, enumeration district (ED) 14-160, sheet 6-B, family 113, Bowers A. Fisher household, accessed 12 Apr 2012); citing National Archives and Records Administration microfilm T627, roll 1651; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com).

I find it interesting that none of those source templates in Family Tree Maker 2012 come close to matching the source citation model in Evidence! Explained or in the QuickSheet Citing Ancestry.com Databases & Images for census images.  I can create an EE-style source citation in Family Tree Maker 2012 using:

5)  Default template (not chosen from the template list):  

1940 U.S. Census, Worcester County, Massachusetts, population schedule, Leominster, Enumeration District (ED) 14-160, sheet 6-B, family 113, Bowers A. Fisher household; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com : accessed 12 April 2012), citing National Archives microfilm publication T627, roll 1651.

In the above citation, only "1940 U.S. Census" is in the Master source field, and the rest of the citation is in the Citation Detail field.

This is, of course, one reason that I prefer to use a Free-form, or Basic Style, source citation for all of my sources.  It's a bit more work sometimes, but the sources get transferred to other programs, and online family trees, relatively cleanly using the free-form sources.  Having done hundreds of them now, I can do it from memory inserting the different numbers and names into the citation details.

Frankly, it shouldn't be that hard for Family Tree Maker 2012 to implement the EE-style source citations with the elements in the correct order - they have all of the pieces, but they need to put them in the correct order and use the standard words and punctuation.

Lastly, I know some readers think that I'm being a bit anal about this ("citation police" and so on), but it is important to get these things as right as possible so that we don't have to continually edit them in our databases or research papers/articles/reports/books.  Software should do the work to a standard, do it consistently, and permit transmission to other software and/or websites without being mangled.  <Anal rant off>

The URL for this post is:  http://www.geneamusings.com/2012/04/creating-1940-us-census-source-citation.html

Copyright (c) 2012, Randall J. Seaver

2 comments:

Ron said...

Have you tried Legacy Family Tree?
Their source writer is awesome.

Russ Worthington said...

Randy,

I just entered this Citation, using the 1930 Census Template. The information, as far as I have seen, has not changed.

Quoting:

1940 U.S. census, Chester county, Pennsylvania, population schedule, enumeration district (ED) 15-102, page 14-A, West Chester, 700 North Walnut, lines 28 to 31, Marshall Darlington Strode; digital image,Ancestry.com. (http://www.ancestry.com: accessed 13 April 2012); NARA microfilm publication T627, roll 3467

End Quote.

That was copied and pasted from FTM2012.

Russ