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Author: rosepetal Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 803  
Subject: Organizing Genealogy Files Date: 6/26/2012 12:11 PM
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Seems to be a tad slow on this board!

I'm wondering how some of you folks organize your files on the computer.

Had a recent Hard Drive failure...got a new one and NOW have backup....which means that yes, I did lose lots of emails that had genealogy info in them, as well as maybe 30 documents. I can pretty much find the info again from the documents loss.

But now that my computer is humming again, I want to really get things in order...Was using Surname as a file folder.....then got to wondering if I should put Counties under a file folder...Wills.......Census reports......Marriages.....Deaths......each of those under a separate folder....or put these "categories" under my Surname folders...(which seems to me to be the best way to go).

Would love to hear how YOU do it!!

Oh...I am on an iMac, Snow Leopard, and have Reunion 8, which I have not been using for years....probably need to download the latest version, tho Reunion 8 was confusing enough for me! ;-)

Thanks....

"Rosie"
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Author: pauleckler Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 692 of 803
Subject: Re: Organizing Genealogy Files Date: 6/26/2012 1:18 PM
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I research all of the Ecklers. I use several sets of files. Surnames. States or localities. Summaries--especially for state information. Spelling variations. etc etc

If you really want to do it right, best is a database file. Then you can sort and search as you go along.

But whatever, on your master family tree chart, leave space to record where the documentation is filed.

Everyone I know points out that genealogy is so complex--no matter how you file it. If you have a question about an individual, you can very well have documents out of several files paperclipped together. Maybe best is copy them quickly and then double file them. Put them back in the original file with a copy in the new subject's paperclip file.

I also hear stories of people who get side tracked. They go looking for a document they knew they had. In the process find something else of interest. And go chasing that lead--leaving the other one open.

Of course now days, you can scan every document into your computer and add tags or whatever to make it possible to find it wherever you look. But then of course some documents will have hundreds of tags.

There is no substitute for a good memory, an efficient filing system, and a good copy machine.

When you are done and publish your master genealogy study, you may very well have a file folder on every individual in your study. Make room for lots of files.

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Author: rosepetal Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 693 of 803
Subject: Re: Organizing Genealogy Files Date: 6/26/2012 5:26 PM
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Paul, you are a true "hunter"! I get sidetracked all the time......

....and I also lose interest for weeks or months at the time.....

....because I am not a "true" genealogist, I am not religious about documenting everything, although most everything I have found on the internet has the info.

....I have transcribed quite a few wills which have been published on the county websites. I have always appreciated those folks who have researched for years and years, (before it was so much easier with the internet) and have shared their info with others.

Thank you for your response......I will mull your ideas over......

"Rosie"

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Author: wecoguy Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 694 of 803
Subject: Re: Organizing Genealogy Files Date: 6/27/2012 3:52 AM
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I went ahead and dove into Reunion 9, also on a Mac... It syncs with my iPhone, so I have all the family data at hand all the time.. Changes there will be sync'd at the next linkup...

Actual paper filing, I'm bad, hanging files folders in an old oak file cabinet... I've scanned about everything and those scans are in various family folders here on my Mac, in some cases, DVDs burned, but organized, no..

I used to use the LDS program, but it skipped a beat, wasn't updated for ages, so I leapt onto Reunion... Actually, way, way back I had an old Northstar Basic program we converted to AppleSoft Basic. Me and another Western Electric engineer, sent it back ad forth, fixing, improving it, we came close to trying to market it, but that never happened... Many, many layers of parenthesis in it, any typo broke it, but it was fun doing it..

So Reunion is it, need to add more photos, there is a local Mac user Group Special Interest Group that meets once a month, goes over it and other topics, but I seem to have missed the last year of meetings... Need a prod I guess...

weco

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Author: pauleckler Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 695 of 803
Subject: Re: Organizing Genealogy Files Date: 6/27/2012 2:36 PM
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The problem we all run into is that while many documents have an obvious filing place, others relate to numerous family members and hence need multiple file sites.

Hence, if you are tracking a given surname, a marriage license names a spouse and has an obvious filing place.

But a will often names all heirs, gives daughters married names, and tells where everyone lived on the date it was prepared. If there are no surviving children, it can name cousins, aunts and uncles, etc. Hence, the information goes many places and so should the references that document that information and tell where it is filed.

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Author: wecoguy Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 696 of 803
Subject: Re: Organizing Genealogy Files Date: 6/27/2012 2:48 PM
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I guess what we need is an option in our program, like Reunion, to add documents, then be able to tag/link the multiple individuals to the docs... Still keep the GEDCOM background, but add to it...

weco

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Author: rosepetal Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 697 of 803
Subject: Re: Organizing Genealogy Files Date: 6/27/2012 6:59 PM
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Ah weco, a cohort from the Apple Users Board!

I need to check out Reunion 9....really never used the full capability of Reunion 8, but it did give me a place to start putting in the names and relationships.

I finally broke down and started using the Family Tree entries at Ancestry.com.......I was searching for others looking for or posting their trees....figured I could help by sharing what I knew......

Have been a member of Ancestry and Genealogy.com for years.......but the first year or so I was starting the journey, I got most of my info by googling names and counties...it was amazing how much turned up! Also, made good use of the Discussion Boards for the different surnames.....

(That is definitely a way to get lost in the search.....I would read for hours!!!)

Once I get my files set properly on the computer, I will go back and continue to fill in the info on Ancestry.com......so much to do...so little time!!!!

(Sometimes I feel like just throwing much of my paper files away. I printed everything I found on the internet.....can go back now and cull lots of unimportant info that at one time I thought was important!)

Thanks for your input!

"Rosie"

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Author: rosepetal Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 698 of 803
Subject: Re: Organizing Genealogy Files Date: 6/27/2012 7:05 PM
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I was fortunate to find the estate papers for one of my ancestors....who had 8 daughters! Would never have known all their married names without these papers.....it's now easy to trace them on census reports, etc.

My direct line ancestors did not venture far from their original locale....so I am lucky there, also.

And tho I have not been down there in over a year...(have I mentioned I lose interest for months at a time?)the NC Dept. of Archives is about 7-10 minutes from where I live. They have an outstanding collection, and I have had them copy numerous wills and estate files.......

...nothing like holding a copy of a will written in 1823 in your hands.....the worst handwriting took place in the 1900's I think. The penmanship back in the 1800's was beautiful!!

"Rosie"

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Author: wecoguy Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 699 of 803
Subject: Re: Organizing Genealogy Files Date: 6/27/2012 11:38 PM
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Hi Rose -

It eats a lot of time, for sure, and now even retired, I seem to have even less... I got to a point where I hoped the LDS would accept my GEDCOM file, knew it has holes, but it would help in so many other ways I thought they'd take it.. Nope, rejected, not enough references.. So maybe Ancestry,com is the way to go, but it seems a bit too public for placing current relations out there.. So I haven't gone to them, other than I did a short access a few years ago.. But it's been a while...

Yes, Apple seems to have me hooked for quite a while... Gordon & Steve seem to have taken over as grand masters, so good for them, and good for the people they help..

Reunion 9, maybe that was when they added the iPhone/Touch App, don't remember, but I did the upgrade, from what I hear the support is great, they do have an online forum for tricks and fixes, well worth it, considering the time we have invested...

Search on!

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Author: pauleckler Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 701 of 803
Subject: Re: Organizing Genealogy Files Date: 6/28/2012 2:38 PM
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So maybe Ancestry,com is the way to go, but it seems a bit too public for placing current relations out there.

On Ancestry, people usually avoid this problem by not naming people who are living. You can also keep your tree private and allow people to look at it only on request.

But you have to think about why you are posting it. 1) For the benefit of your relatives to share your research? Then omitting most recent generations is OK as usually they are familiar with those people.

2) In hopes of finding other researchers who know something about parts of your family that perhaps you did not find? Then you want the older generations public for sure.

Generally in posting your work, you create a reference point. Some people may disagree with some finer points. When they lived where. Certain dates. etc. But then you hope those who disagree present their reasons and documentation. So conflicts get resolved and the research moves forward.

This is one more technique to shake the tree for every shred of evidence that survives.

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Author: wecoguy Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 702 of 803
Subject: Re: Organizing Genealogy Files Date: 6/28/2012 5:55 PM
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Thanks Paul - It is an interesting dance, sorting the earlier generation from the alive current generations does present another challenge...

Where I've been looking is on my Mom (Polish/Irish), and my Dad's (Danish) side...

Mom's side quite a few pieces of the puzzle, even a cousin popped up, the grandson of a second cousin, she'd given his Dad up for adoption as a girl, so reuniting them was quite a trip..

Dad's, I'm stumped, his Mom died here in CA, but his Dad, no idea, apparently thy split around 1902, as I found a court reference to property disposal, but still have no birthplace, just Denmark... met a Danish Librarian on a trip to England several years ago, got his email, but was never able to make contact with him in Copenhagen... Maybe his heath issues caught up, or it was a bad address.. Looked for the name in the staff, never found it..

But I get interested on and off, be nice to make a find... I've shared the files with family, but it's hard to get the younger set interest as they get busy with family, careers...

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Author: pauleckler Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 703 of 803
Subject: Re: Organizing Genealogy Files Date: 6/28/2012 8:37 PM
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it's hard to get the younger set interest as they get busy with family, careers...

Every generation seems to have this problem. At least modern methods make it easier to publish enough of it so your research will be available when they are ready for it.

Of course long after you are gone, they will have many questions. Where have you looked? What did you find? A diary or memoir that tells the story of your search may also be of interest to them.

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Author: wecoguy Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 704 of 803
Subject: Re: Organizing Genealogy Files Date: 6/29/2012 1:19 AM
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I try to leave notes in the various entries in Reunion... But, hard to guess which Grandkid, cousin will show an interest...

Early 90s, I ended up finding my Mom's side Homestead in Montana, that led to other tales, places, so for a couple years I made up a multi-page newsletter, sent it to all known family members, not a single replay... But it did stir interest, led to a couple reunions that I know of... maybe triggered some interest...

A lot of the folks I met back then have passed, tried to make contact with their kids, not happening.. We all have local family interests, hard to make those longer bridges...

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Author: tori26 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 705 of 803
Subject: Re: Organizing Genealogy Files Date: 6/29/2012 11:41 AM
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Although none of my cousins or my brother seem to be interested in the family info (unless I have a story I found).... I have through Ancestry connected with distant cousins from both sides of my family tree.

I liked what one of my distant cousins did with his family history and I fell into it recently when I visted the Historical Library in Hudson, OH.

He left a great many items and notes with them and I was able to make copies of what pertained to some of my not quite so distant relatives.

Linda

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Author: pauleckler Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 706 of 803
Subject: Re: Organizing Genealogy Files Date: 6/29/2012 6:18 PM
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It does seem that genealogy is one of the things many pick up when they retire or have a bit more time. These days young couples raising a family have very little time for such endeavors.

Still some do pick it up when they are quite young. They have more energy. A friend tells stories of going on family picnics to cemeteries and paying his kids a treat if they find an Eckler grave. They tend to have sharper memories for details.

Once you could do a lot by writing letters. Now few letters get answers. Email and internet seem to be the way.

But there are still passionate hobbyists out there.

I note that Ancestry seems determined to put all of the census records into family trees. Users are asked to contribute their part. Imagine what Ancestry will look like in 30 years. Look at how far we have come from the first printed census indexes. Eventually it will all be done.

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Author: stevenjklein Big funky green star, 20000 posts Feste Award Nominee! Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 709 of 803
Subject: Re: Organizing Genealogy Files Date: 7/29/2012 5:49 PM
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Rosie:

For organizing files of various types, I strongly recommend Yojimbo.

They have a free 30-day demo. And they have a short introductory movie that explains how it works: http://documentation.barebones.com/yojimbo2/qt/YojimboOvervi...

Note: I know that they're about to introduce a new version of Yojimbo in the Mac store, and I expect them to offer an introductory price — probably half off.

But even if you buy it today at full price, it's only $40.

I gave a demo on Yojimbo last month at my local user group meeting, and I'll be glad to answer any questions you may have about it.

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