I have completely revised my website within the last few weeks. A lot of that revision has been from my change in genealogy programs.
Previously, I used Legacy Family Tree: I even had a page on my website recommending the program. I still think that it is a worthwhile, good genealogy program.
However, I have recently change to the Master Genealogist available from http://www.whollygenes.com for my personal genealogy research. I downloaded the trial version because I was frustrated trying to get everything into the current program. It took a lot of copy/paste to get everyone who was listed on a census updated with an event indicating that they were listed on that census. The same was true for people who were mentioned in an obituary, funeral card, newspaper article, or other document.
I even took a detour and tried the lastest Family Tree Maker (2008). That is a detour worthy of a whole lot of pages from the problems that I had with program and data reliability!
Back to today’s story, when I tried the newest version, for some reason, the software just clicked to me! It’s use of tags allows me to enter an event one time with associated memos, source citations, and exhibits but then to link everyone associated with the event as witnesses. Through the use of the roles, I can even detail their connection to the event. For instance, when I find a census record, I enter it once on the head of household’s screen. When I link in the others listed using the appropriate roles, the software automatically adds events to their screens that link back to the original event! When I view reports on those people, the event is listed including their connection to the event! No more copy/paste on the events! Also, if I need to change something on the source citation on that event, I don’t have to find all the places for that citation, I can just change the citation on the one event! What a time saver!!
I also love the add-on program second-site that I use with the software to create my new website! This program creates the website in a narrative format. It sounds like the story of my family complete with photos and images of records. I will even be able to create CDs of the family history specialized with my niece and nephews relationships to everyone for their Christmas presents!! Maybe I can get them interested in our family history!
I have been entering my family history in the new program over the last few weeks. I have a lot in so far but MUCH to go! I am entering everything as fast as I can to get everything that I currently know into the program. However, in order to take advantage of TMG’s features and to recover from the many data problems I had after using FTM 2008, I am entering by hand all of my genealogy info in TMG and making sure that everything gets sourced to the best level of my information now! This is taking a while but I am much, much more comfortable with the reliability of my data and my knowledge of where I obtained that data.
My data is currently has 543 people with 650 attached exhibits. The exhibits include 400 different family photos. Please be aware though that many of these are not shown on my website because I do not display on the website information on living persons. However, some details on living persons may be included in obituary transcriptions, etc. However, these sources are public information so only otherwise public information is displayed on the website.
Please feel free to email if you have any questions/comments/corrections regarding my genealogy information.
I have also started a new mailing list for my genealogy. I have added to this list everyone with whom I have exchanged genealogy information. As you can see from the headers, each person will only see their own email address when they receive my email messages. The mailing list will allow me to send out general messages to update everyone about what I have added to my website and my genealogy information in general without having to keep track of who specifically was waiting for what information. That has quite frankly become overwhelming for me and I forget to send everyone what they need. As I add something to my website, I will update everyone via this list that way I will hopefully keep everyone up-to-date on what info I have available. Please continue to feel free to email with any specifics and I will try to respond but this way I don’t have to remember everyone who wanted an update when I found out/added more about my Treats/Stansells/Thompsons/Lawrences/Reynolds etc and what they were waiting on and you will be updated when I add new information and not have to keep checking to see what I have updated! Let me know your thoughts on the mailing list.
Also, my website now contains a new feature that lists the last date that I edited each person’s data. This should allow you to see at a glance if your ancestor’s information has changed. Also, I added in a Recent Modifications page that lists the people whose entries I have modified in the several days before I uploaded the website the most recent time.
By the way, the new photo galleries page includes a list of several different photo galleries that are separated by surname and some additional galleries just to keep things interesting. I welcome your comments/suggestions for the website.
Also, I have created a new blog for the website! I will of course be adding entries for my genealogy updates, however, you may also find entries added for anything else that might come to mind on any given day. Check it out and let me know what you think!
The emails to this list will also be archived on the blog.
Future emails will focus more on the information that I have updated and my joys/triumphs and distressing failures to find information!
I will email again soon.