Thursday, April 25, 2013

Modifying Data in FamilySearch Family Tree Using RootsMagic 6

I've written previously about adding information to a person in FamilySearch Family Tree using the RootsMagic program.  

Since I found birth and death dates for Samuel and Mary Ann (Underhill) Vaux on Find A Grave memorials, I needed to edit the information in the FamilySearch Family Tree for those events.  I also wanted to add the census events and the burial event to both of them in the Family Tree.

At this time, RootsMagic 6 is the only FamilySearch certified genealogy program that can add data directly into the Family Tree.   Here is the process I used to add event data for Mary Ann (Underhill) Vaux:

1)  Unfrortunately, I did not make a "Before" screen from the FamilySearch Family Tree for Mary Ann (my bad, sorry!).

2)  In RootsMagic 6, here is the Family View for this family:

On the line with the person's name, there is a Family Tree icon on the right side of that line.

3)  Clicking on the Family Tree icon for Mary Ann Underhill opens the FamilySearch Person Tools page for that person (assuming the user has a FamilySearch account and has added the login credentials to RootsMagic):

A careful look at the list above shows that the Birth, Death, Burial and Census Events on the RootsMagic Person list on the left (in the RootsMagic database) are NOT the same as in the Family Tree Person list on the right.

4)  I can add the event data in RootsMagic to the Family Tree.  If I click in the RootsMagic Person box for the BIRTH event, a popup box asks "What do you want to do with this fact?"  For the Birth and Death Facts, I want to replace the information in Family Tree so I select that line in the popup box:

I did the same thing for the Death Fact, and then added the Burial Fact and the three Census Events that I had in RootsMagic to the FamilySearch Family Tree.  Each Event changed or added took about 20 seconds to complete, so this is not an instantaneous process.

5)  When I was finished changing the two Facts and adding the four Facts,, the RootsMagic window for FamilySearch Person Tools page shows those items completed in the FamilySearch Person list:

Unfortunately, these changes or additions have to be made one event at a time using RootsMagic.  At present, there is no method to upload a set of people to the Family Tree by pressing one button (like with a GEDCOM file). I could add information in FamilySearch Family Tree manually if I choose to.  But I might miss something, or make a keyboard error.  Using RootsMagic makes it pretty easy to do and what goes into Family Tree is exactly what's in RootsMagic.

6)  I then went to the FamilySearch Family Tree and navigated to Mary Ann Underhill's profile.  Here are two screens that show the information was edited or added:

On the right side of the Person Profile is a box titled "Latest Changes."  Clicking on the "More" link in that box shows me the latest changes made (two screens):

As you can see, this Change Log shows that I changed the Birth and Death event data, and added the Burial and three Custom Events (census records) today.

7)  The next challenge is to add all of my sources for these Events.  I'll have to do that in the FamilySearch Family Tree itself, using the Source Box in FamilySearch and the Record Seek tool to add other source citations.

The URL for this post is:

copyright (c) 2013, Randall J. Seaver


Devon Noel Lee said...

I'm glad to know that RootsMagic 6 can add an event but it is not asking for why. I thought the FamilyTree format was requiring why statements. Skipping this step speeds things up. Yet, I question whether RootsMagic users should be allowed to skip this step when website users are not.

Unknown said...

Two comments.

It does ask why. Look at the screenshot with the pop up that mentions replacing data. look at the bottom field. Neither system requires it, and perhaps it is less eye catching in RootsMagic.

on a different note, my most recent problems

It does not always add the people I try to add.

RootsMagic does not create standards inside Family Tree for the facts you edit or add. One immediately apparent downside is that children are out of order because of having no standard date.

Keith Riggle said...

I've been holding off using FS Family Tree until there's a sync capability. I'm glad RootsMagic can sync with it, but it's still too rudimentary for me. Having to add all my sources by hand is a non-starter, especially since doing so in Family Tree is so cumbersome. I'd like to see something as slick as syncing trees between and Family Tree Maker. Still waiting...

Geolover said...

Randy, one of your points was "Unfortunately, these changes or additions have to be made one event at a time using RootsMagic. At present, there is no method to upload a set of people to the Family Tree by pressing one button (like with a GEDCOM file)."

Freestanding genealogical programs could be designed to add a family group, once it was determined that no duplicates already were in the database.

However, unbridled addition of GEDCOM files is one of the features that has made the database in both new.FamilySearch and FamilySearch-Family Tree such a mess, with duplicates, erroneous data, erroneous family connections, etc. Indeed, n.FS began with part of its database being such uploaded GEDCOM files.

At least at present, FamilySearch's preventing such unfiltered uploads to FT minimizes the amount of erroneous and duplicate data that can be added. However, there have been and will continue to be massive errors installed by the determined user of programs that can interface with the FT.

The use of such programs which speed up the entry process is not necessarily an actual enhancement, since so many personal tree compilers (the vast majority) have not based their data on evidentiary research.

The designers of FS-FT appear to have a lot of faith that over time the tree will vector toward accuracy. Time will tell whether this belief will be borne out.

Rick Crume said...

You wrote, "At present, there is no method to upload a set of people to the Family Tree by pressing one button (like with a GEDCOM file)." You can upload a GEDCOM file for inclusion in the Pedigree Resource File and copy the information into Family Tree. However, notes, sources and multimedia links in your GEDCOM file cannot be added to Family Tree. See "Uploading GEDCOM Files and Copying the Information to Family Tree" .

Rick Crume said...

The URL for "Uploading GEDCOM Files and Copying the Information to Family Tree" is

Rick Crume said...

A PDF version of that file is easier to read: Uploading GEDCOM Files and Copying the Information into Family Tree