Saturday, August 24, 2013

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - Make an Ancestor's Timeline

Calling all Genea-Musings Fans: 

 It's Saturday Night again - 
time for some more Genealogy Fun!!

Here is your assignment if you choose to play along (cue the Mission Impossible music, please!):

1) Have you created a Timeline for one of your ancestors using a genealogy software program (e.g., Family Tree Maker, RootsMagic, Legacy, Reunion, etc.) or an online family Tree (e.g., Ancestry Member Tree, FamilySearch Family Tree, Geni, MyHeritage, etc.), or in a spreadsheet (e.g., Excel)?

2)  If not, try to create a timeline using the program/website of your choice.  If so, create another one for the ancestor of your choice!

3)  Show us your Timeline creation, and tell us how you did it.  Which program/website, the process you used, and how you captured the images to display your timeline.

4)  Share your Timeline creation on your own blog post, in a comment to this post, or on Facebook or Google+.

Here's mine:

2)  I chose to use the RootsMagic 6 genealogy software program, which has both a Timeline View and a Timeline Report.

3)  Here is the "Timeline View" format in RootsMagic 6:

The "Timeline View" for a person has columns for "Age," "Facts," "Date," "Details," "place" and icons for Notes, Sources, and Media (the green check marks)   The "Timeline View" added the immediate family members (parents, siblings, spouses, children) to the list without my having to request it (you can select the options in the "Options" button on the "Timeline View" menu).  I really like this view, but, other than using a screen capture like above, I could not find a way to print out this list in color 

The second option to produce a Timeline is to use the Reports menu > Lists item > Timeline (chronology) item, and select "Individual Timeline list," select a person from the "Select others to include in timeline," select the person, and then create a group by using "Mark group" and picking "Family of highlighted person" (which adds parents, siblings, spouses and children events).

Here are the two pages for the Timeline:

I also requested "Sources" in an Endnote format:

The "Timeline (chronology)" report is very plain - but it is very useful.  I would like to see a little more information about the relationships - for instance, identify the family persons as son, daughter, wife, father, mother, brother, sister, etc.  

4)  I did it above!

Copyright (c) 2013, Randall J. Seaver


Marshall said...

By a funny coincidence, I just did something very like this for one set of great-grandparents.

It's not a complete timeline, but it starts with the story told in the family, covers their move from the east coast to San Diego about 1900, and concludes with questions about some of the details.

I put the story up at

Marshall said...

Let's make that a real link:

The McHorneys and Lauterbachs come to San Diego

Melody said...

I created both a timeline and an individual list in RootsMagic 5 for my great grandmother. I wish the timeline report had all the details of the individual list, because I like the way the timeline looks.