Did you know that you can filter your Ancestry.com green leaf Hints by record collection? I currently have over 41,000 Hints in my "big" tree with almost 43,000 persons in it. More are being added every day.
How do I deal with them? Well, I've chosen to add content to my Ancestry Member Tree (facts, sources, images) by mining individual databases. I manually add the events, sources and images to my RootsMagic database also. I find this process easier to handle one database at a time rather than one person at a time, or one page of Hints (20 Hints per page, so I have over 2,000 pages to look at!). When I finish a selected database, I have a feeling of accomplishment. And I've added content and sources that enrich my database and may help other researchers who find the information in my Ancestry Member Tree.
I've written about searching Ancestry.com databases by record collection previously in:
* Finding Record Hints for Persons in a Specific Database on Ancestry.com (posted 15 October 2014)
* More on Finding Record Hints for a Specific Database on Ancestry.com (posted 17 October 2014).
* Demonstrating Adding Ancestry.com Hints in a Specific Database to my RootsMagic Database (30 October 2014)
If you read those posts, you can see that there are two key numbers to learn:
* Your Ancestry Member Tree number - if you open your Ancestry Member Tree to the tree chart, the Tree number is in the URL (Internet address) at the top of your screen.
* The Ancestry.com database number for the selected database.
Let me demonstrate it again here.
1) The screen below shows my Pedigree view of my Ancestry Member Tree:
At the top of the browser page (not shown above) is the URL (Internet address) for this Ancestry Member Tree:
The URL is http://trees.ancestry.com/tree/71134866/family
My Ancestry Member Tree number is the 8-digit number in the URL: 71134866.
2) Use the Ancestry.com Card Catalog to find the database number of the database you want to search. I chose the World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918.
In the URL line on my browser is the address for this specific database. It is:
The Ancestry database number for the World War I Draft Registration database is number 6482.
3) Now, the magic URL to search my Ancestry Member Tree (71134866) by this specific database (6482) is:
You will have to substitute your own Ancestry Member Tree number and the database number that you want to search. You can add my URL above into your browser but don't click Enter. Put your cursor in the URL and substitute your Ancestry Member Tree number in place of mine and the database number you selected. Once I had these numbers in my browser address line, I saved the URL in my Bookmarks so I could easily use it again.
4) When I plugged the URL for the World War I Draft Registrations into my browser, I received my results:
I had 191 entries for persons in my Ancestry Member Tree in the World war I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918 collection. I can then go through these one at a time, attaching or rejecting the record image to persons in my tree, which will also attach the Ancestry.com source citation, and adding the information to my RootsMagic database.
I usually click on the link for the record for the person - in the screen above I chose the link to the image for Leslie Delmar Acker, the first person on the list above:
I can add the pertinent information to my RootsMagic database, and a source citation to Evidence Explained standards (note that Ancestry.com's source citations are not to EE standards).
The World War I Draft Registrations, 1917-1918 are for males born between 1874-1900, and the coverage is fairly complete. The record always contains a full name, a birth date, a current location, an employer, a next of kin, a signature, and a description of the person. This is an excellent record for males born in that time period; some states do not have birth indexes or certificates for that time period.
5) Ancestry.com is still finding Hints for me (about 5-10 each day!), so I will have to revisit these specific databases every so often. So far I've completed the Social Security Death Index, the 1940 U.S. Census, and Find A Grave using this process. I'm currently working in the 1930 U.S. Census.
My experience is that the Hints provided are 95% to 100% accurate - the Ancestry.com search engines are excellent. Of course, they don't find everything due to really different name spelling variations, or errors in my Ancestry Member Tree. My guess is that they find 80% to 90% of the possible matches.
This process works well for me - I continue to add content and source citations to my database, enriching the profiles of my Tree persons gradually, one record at a time. I have a feeling of accomplishment when I finish a database.
It makes more sense to me to let Ancestry's search engines do these tasks rather than fumble with search field entries. It saves me time, and energy, and I can sleep at night while Ancestry.com works to find records for my Tree persons.
The URL for this post is: http://www.geneamusings.com/2015/01/tuesdays-tip-search-ancestrycom-hints.html
Copyright (c) 2015, Randall J. Seaver