Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Exploring Family Tree Maker 2012 - Post 21: Creating a Cemetery Grave Marker Source

See all posts in this series at Exploring Family Tree Maker 2012 Compendium.

One of my major criteria for selecting a "preferred" genealogy management program is the ease in creating source citations. I want to demonstrate the source citation creation process in Family Tree Maker 2012 in a number of posts for several different types of records, both for my own education and, hopefully, to help others navigate this fairly complex process.

Another Source record type is Cemetery grave markers.  I want to create a source citation for a grave marker in a specific cemetery that I have visited and have a photograph of.  I'm going to use my great-grandfather, Frank Walton Seaver (1852-1922) for this.  He is buried in Lot 68 of Section 6 of Evergreen Cemetery on Main Street in Leominster, Massachusetts, with his wife and son.

The process I used to create this source citation was:

a. Go to "People" workspace, and "Person" view for my great-grandfather, Frank Walton Seaver.
b. Select (single click on it) the Burial Fact.
c. In the right-hand panel in the "Source" tab, click on "New" and select "Add new source citation."
d. In the "Add Source Citation for Burial for ..." window, click the "New" button
e.  With the "Source template" window, click on the "More" button
f. Pick the "Cemetery Records" template from the "Select Source Template" list, then pick "Grave Markers" in the Category field, and "Rural Location" in the Template field. 

The "Source Template List" is shown below:

g. Click "OK"
h. The "Add Source" window opens, fill in the template fields with:

*  Cemetery:  Evergreen Cemetery
*  Location:  Leominster, Worcester County, Massachusetts
*  Access data: North on Main Street 0.8 miles  from town center
*  Comments: [blank]

The "Add Source" window looks like this:

i.  Click "OK" and you're back to the "Add Source Citation for Burial ..." window,
j.  Fill in the template fields for:

*  Citation detail:  Frank W. Seaver gravestone, Lot 68, Section 6; visited 25 August 2006 by Randy Seaver
*  Citation text:  Inscription:
Frank W. Seaver
Hattie L. Seaver his wife
Howard R. Seaver

The "Add Source citation..." window looks like this:

k.  To get the "Reference Note" for this source citation, click on the "Reference Note" tab:

The completed Reference Note source citation, including the Citation text, reads (source template elements in purple, citation details in red):

Evergreen Cemetery (Leominster, Worcester County, Massachusetts); North on Main Street 0.8 miles from town center, Frank W. Seaver gravestone, Lot 68, Section 6; visited 25 August 2006 by Randy Seaver.
Frank W. Seaver
Hattie L. Seaver his wife
Howard E. Seaver

I created that source citation without looking at Evidence! Explained, using the hints provided by FTM 2012 for each field.. 

How did Family Tree Maker 2012 do?  Here is a source citation crafted for the above Fact using the Evidence! Explained model (Grave Markers: Rural, on page 213 (of the 2007 Edition):

Evergreen Cemetery (Leominster, Worcester County, Massachusetts; North on Main Street 0.8 miles from town center), Frank W. Seaver marker, photographed by Randy Seaver, 25 August 2006.

Family Tree Maker 2012 did pretty well with this citation.  The major difference is in the directions - they are within the parentheses in EE, but outside them in FTM2012.  The differences in the Citation details can be easily modified by the user to match the EE example.

The "Cemetery Records" templates include Categories and Templates for:

1.  Cemetery Office Records
**  Personally Used
**  Supplied by Staff
**  Online image
**  Preservation film - FHL-GSU
2.  Grave Markers
**  Rural location
**  Urban location
**  Online image
3.  Memorial Plaques
**  Memorial Plaque
4.  Derivatives
**  Cemetery abstract - vertical file
**  Cemetery abstract - card file
**  Online database

The Cemetery source citation templates in FTM 2012 seem to follow the Evidence! Explained examples fairly well. 

A Cemetery Marker source citation crafted for Frank W. Seaver's entry on the Find A Grave website would be (using the Cemetery Records > Grave markers  > Online image template) is:

Jim Tipton, Find A Grave, digital images (, (accessed 25 August 2006), photograph, gravestone for Frank W. Seaver (1853-1922), Evergreen Cemetery, Leominster, Massachusetts.
The Evidence! Explained model (Grave Markers, Images Online on page 216 of the 2007 Edition) for the Frank W. Seaver Burial Fact is:

Jim Tipton, Find A Grave, digital images, ( : accessed 25 August 2006), photograph, gravestone for Frank W. Seaver (1853-1922), Leominster, Massachusetts.

Close, but not exactly the same.  Family Tree Maker could revise their source template to include the access date to more fully conform to the EE model.  I think that the cemetery name should be in the online image source citation in order to help readers know where the grave is located. 


Lauren Mahieu said...

Randy, you bring up some really good points about source citations and the differences with the various software programs. I also saw your comments on DearMyrtle's blog posted last month on open source citations at I will be ecstatic if the project transpires and lives up to its claims. Like many, I was not the best at citations as a new genealogist many years ago, but to make matters worse, I have switched my primary program several times (Reunion, Legacy, and now use [and love!] RootsMagic. Consequently, I've had to do considerable work on my sources, and it seems to be never ending as I pick up on lines that I haven't focused on recently.

On a separate (but related) subject, I'm interested to hear if any of your other readers have had issues with FTM 2012 and their trees? I purchased FTM 2012 only for the purpose of uploading and maintaining my trees on, and my tree is heavy on media. Altogether I have about 2500 individuals, but have saved each census as an image an have it linked to the individuals, as well as scanned versions of all other documents I have that related to those individuals. I can view the tree fine on a PC and even on my iPhone. However, my iPad (iOS 5) is unable to display the tree. Either the app crashes, or it doesn't load the tree, or only loads some of the individuals. I've ininstalled/reinstalled dozens of times, called and emailed but as yet have not had my problem resolved. Can't imagine I'm the only one with issues, and keep hoping they release an update to the app.

Anyway, enjoy your blog...keep up the great work!

Cousin Russ said...


I have had no issues with the iPad AP from Ancestry, nor the Droid (Beta) AP. I use FTM2012 and have had no issues with seeing my Tree(s) on the mobile devices. Used them several times this past weekend.

One thing that I make sure, with both APs is that I see the Downloading take place when I am first opening the AP. I have changed Trees a couple of times to make sure that I see that download.


Jeff Hodge said...

Randy states "Family Tree Maker 2012 did pretty well with this citation ... The differences in the Citation details can be easily modified by the user to match the EE example." I assume this means going into the Reference note tab and manually editing the citation that FTM has created. I have considered doing this and wonder if others do this, and whether it has any consequences when generating reports and the like.

Anonymous said...

This touches on an issue I"ve been having with FTM2012. When you customize a source template, you should be able to save that format for future citations. I'm currently having to customize each instance of a source and it's been getting extremely cumbersome. Hopefully, this is an area of focus for the FTM development team on their next release.

Cousin Russ said...


So, you are NOT using the Template Feature, right?

Not sure what you are customizing.

Customizing a Source? or Customizing a Citation.

IF you have the source the way you want if (a Free Form Source) AND the citation is from that same SOURCE, then add a Citation to that source. No need to customize anything.

I am trying to understand the question.

I have a Family Tree Maker Blog, if you want to look over there. I don't think Randy would mind you visiting another blog:

I have talked about Templates, Sources and Citations over there.

Thank you,


Unknown said...

very nice and decent blog ever.thanks
Online Reputation Management Services