Monday, January 31, 2011

Source Citation Creation in RootsMagic 4 - some examples

After my problems with creating Evidence! Explained quality source citations in Family Tree Maker 2011 and in Legacy Family Tree 7, I decided to export a GEDCOM file to RootsMagic 4 from Legacy.  The main reason I did this from Legacy was to make sure that the Notes in the RootsMagic 4 file did not have missing spaces (as they did when I imported an FTM 2011 file earlier).  The Source Citations export from Legacy as "Free-form" citations in the GEDCOM file, and import to RootsMagic in that format also. 

I know that I could have imported the Legacy Family tree 7 file directly into RootsMagic 4, but I figured that the GEDCOM would be the "worst case," and typical of what a user that receives a GEDCOM file would do.

I went ahead and created duplicate Source Citations for a number of source types using the RootsMagic Source Templates.  A screenshot of the RootsMagic source Template for the first item on my list (an online Vital Records Index) is shown below:

Here are some of the Source template citations created in RootsMagic 4 (same specific citations as created in FTM 2011):

 Vital records index (Website, as book):

Rootsweb (original database created by State of California , Department of Health Services, Center for Health Statistics, Sacramento,CA, USA), California Death Index, 1940-1997 [online index database] ( : accessed 2009), Maybelle C. Wright entry, Death Date 31 March 1964, Death place San Diego (80), Birth date 17 May 1902, Mother's maiden name Ashdown.

Birth certificate, local level:

Randall Jeffrey Seaver, birth certificate NC-867 (1943) (23 October 1943), San Diego County Clerk Office, 1300 Pacific Highway, San Diego, California.

Book, basic format

Blaine Whipple, History and Genealogy of "Elder" John Whipple of Ipswich, Massachusetts (Victoria, BC, Canada: Whipple Development Corporation, 2003).

Record Commissioners of Boston, A Report of the Record Commissioners of the City of Boston Containing Dorchester Births, Marriages and Deaths to the End of 1825 (Boston, Mass.: Rockwell & Churchill, City Printers, 1890).

Robert S. Wakefield (editor), Mayflower Families Through Five Generations: Volume 13: Family of William White (Boston, Mass.: General Society of Mayflower Descendants, 1997), page 6.

Periodical (Serial)

Caroline Martino and Marcia Lindberg, "Henry Collins of Lynn and his Descendants," The Essex Genealogist (The Essex Society of Genealogists, Lynn, Mass.), starting Vol. 10, #3-4 (1990), Vol 11, #1-3 (1991), Vol 12 #4 (1992).

Elizabeth French Bartlett, ""Genealogical Research in England: Weeden," New England Historical and Genealogical Register (Boston, Mass.: New England Historic Genealogical Society), Volume 76 (Number 2 (April 1922)): [Page].

Newspaper, online images

"Frederick Schaffner Death Notice," San Francisco [California] Chronicle [online database, index and images], 1 July 1899, page 10; ( : accessed 2010).

Census, U.S. Federal (online images)

1930 United States Census, San Diego County, California, population schedule, San Diego City, enumeration district (ED) 116, 5A [stamped], dwelling #142, family #148, Lyle L. Carringer; [online index and digital images], ( Provo, Utah, USA, 2004) ( : accessed 2010); citing National Archives publication T626, roll 192.

Probates - case file (local)

Worcester County, Massachusetts, Worcester County [Mass.] Probate Court Records (1732-1881), Probate Packet 52,857 (1867), Abigail (Gates) Seaver, 1867; Worcester County Courthouse, Worcester, Massachusetts.

Grave Markers (urban or rural)

Woodside Cemetery (Westminster, Massachusetts), Benjamin Seaver monument; photographed by Randall Seaver, 2004.

Family records, non-Bible (privately held)

Smith/Carringer Family Correspondence (loose letters, 1888–1902), [Page], originals privately held by Randall J. Seaver, [address for private use], Chula Vista CA 91911, 1988 (great grandson). Family letters to and from Abigail (Vaux) Smith, Rebecca (Spangler) Carringer, and Della (Smith) Carringer.
Family Bible

Family Bible Record template:

Family Bible Record of Rebecca "Spangler" Carringer of Boulder, Colorado and San Diego, California, unknown title (unknown location: unknown publisher, n.d.), owner (1988) Randall J. Seaver, ([address for private use], Chula Vista CA 91911).

The interested reader can compare those with the corresponding entries in Evidence! Explained and in Source Citations Created in Family Tree Maker 2011 - some examples.  I see now that I neglected to do a similar post for Legacy Family Tree 7.

The only thing I saw that bothered me a bit was the Census source template that will require each unique census page to have it's own Master Source citation (because of the need to put the NARA Roll number in the Master Source field).  I may leave those in the free-form style because I have so many of them.

I am very happy with the source citations created using the RootsMagic 4 source templates.  It takes some time to do each one of them, but the master source creation process seems much easier than FTM2011 and Legacy Family Tree 7.  Going forward, the two big issues for me are:

1)  Does RootsMagic place the information in the Source Template fields into the correct GEDCOM fields?

2)  Can I merge the existing 650 free-form source templates in the database into the RootsMagic EE-style Source Templates?

If RootsMagic 4 can do both of those tasks, then it will become my favorite program because it creates the least work for me.  I will go ahead and make Source Template citations and merge the Free-form citations into the template citations.

The Seaver Source Citation Saga continues...


Family Curator said...

Randy - Thanks for doing this so we don't have to! What a task.

I have moved from a PC to a Mac, and although I know I can run my old Windows software on my Mac with virtual Windows, I am interested in how Mac programs perform in comparison to the PC versions you have been reviewing. I haven't bought new software yet, but I am trying to analyze my option

I wonder if a helpful Mac genealogist might run similar benchmark tests... maybe they could even use the GEDCOM file you have been porting across programs for a real comparison. For anyone who might want to switch platforms at some time, the transition is all key.

Chris said...

I think it depends on which U.S. Census template you use.

For templates from Census, U.S. Federsl, 1790-1840 (filmed) through Census, U.S. Federal, Veterans sch. 1890 (Microfilm, NA) you have to build the master to the County Level.

The Master part of template requiers the NARA film group. The roll number is in the individual citation portion of the template.

Susan Clark said...

I echo FC's comments. It would be glorious to see similar work for the Mac programs, but since I've been using Legacy on the Mac for years this may be enough for me.

Can't wait to see the RootsMagic results. If it meets your standards I'll have a new favorite program, too!

Malissa R said...

It took just a couple of minutes but I figured out how to create my own source template for Ancestry (and Heritage Quest) Census citations that puts the NARA microfilm roll number on the detail level, rather than the master level. I have a ton of carefully crafted citations for each roll number created over the last couple of years but going forward, I will only have one master source for each US Census. Umm....better late than never?