Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Checking Out "My Source Box" on FamilySearch.org

Sandy Amone on the Spittal Street blog highlighted a new feature called My Source Box on www.FamilySearch.org - see Sandy's post at http://spittalstreet.com/?p=4967 and the FamilySearch blog post for My Source Box at https://familysearch.org/blog/familysearch-featuremy-source-box/.

This sounded like the "next step" in adding source citations to the FamilySearch Family Tree, so I wondered how it worked.  The FamilySearch blog post describes the process, and the comments highlight some of the problems encountered so far.

Here is my look at it:

1)  I signed into FamilySearch.org with my FREE account (that is a necessity to use My Source Box or the FamilySearch Family Tree).  Then I searched the FamilySearch Historical Collections for Isaac Seaver, born in 1823-1824 (I used an "exact" search) and the results page appeared:

2)  I clicked on the top search result for Isaac Seaver in the 1900 Census and the result summary page appeared:

Up in the right hand corner of the screen above is a link to "My Source Box" and running your mouse over it shows two morel inks - "Add to My Source Box" and "Go to My Source Box."

3)  I clicked on the "Add to My Source Box" link and a popup window appeared:

The popup window is headed "Added to My Source Box" and shows the source text that will be added.  I clicked on the "OK" button and the source was added.  The source text for this record is:

"United States Census, 1900," Isaac Seaver, Leominster town (southeast quarter), Worcester, Massachusetts

4)  I went through the list of search result matches and added sources for seven results to My Source Box.  Then I clicked on the "Go to My Source Box" link and saw all of my sources that I had added:

5)  I clicked on several of those on the list and was able to see more information for these sources - including the URL and the complete citation:

For the 1900 U.S. Census record above, the URL was:

The citation was:

"United States Census, 1900," index and images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/M9BQ-JB3 : accessed 29 May 2012), Isaac Seaver, Leominster town (southeast quarter), Worcester, Massachusetts.

While that source citation is not exactly Evidence! Explained quality (e.g., the order of the elements, the ED, page, dwelling, family numbers, the NARA microfilm publication/roll, the FHL microfilm number), it does lead to the summary of the census record, which leads to the census record image. It may be "good enough" for some researchers. The FamilySearch blog post indicates that the source citation can be edited or removed, so I may try that. The blog post also notes that source citations can be added by typing into a source citation form (I actually did that previously for Isaac's birth certificate within the FS Family Tree, and it is included in My Source Box).

Now that I have captured some of the sources that pertain to Isaac Seaver (1823-1901), I need to figure out how to add them to Isaac Seaver in the FamilySearch Family Tree. I'll report on that process soon!

Copyright (c) 2012, Randall J. Seaver


Elf Flame said...

I've really been enjoying the feature so far. It's more like a mid step between looking and citing, but it's still nice to be able to have all the records I've already found in one place.

Donna Peterson said...

Thanks Randy! I tried it and it works like a charm. Today is my day at the local FHC so I guess its "Show and Tell".

Mathias said...

Thank you for this article. I am excited to use this new feature.