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Multiple Resources-Best Practices

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  • Multiple Resources-Best Practices

    I use RootsMagic to track my research. I am a member at Ancestry.com, FamilySearch.com, and several other sites. Using RootsMagic I sync my info on Ancestry and FamilySearch and may do the same on other sites. There is some info that can be readily found on multiple sites, such as birth certificates, marriage certificates, death certificates and census records. Often, depending upon their scanning, you find these resources with that site's citation info which in that case, they are the repository.

    I am trying to determine the best practice for recording this information.

    Let's use the US 1920 Census for my grandfather as an example. Both Ancestry and FamilySearch have scanned the census records so he is listed on both. I have downloaded the document to my RootsMagic and used the Ancestry source and citation with Ancestry as the repository. Then when I access his info on FamilySearch, the same document is found (after all there is only one census record and it has been scanned by multiple sites!!), but FamilySearch has their own source and citation. Should this record be cited again with the FamilySearch documentation?

    Another example would be death certificates for my mother and father. I have original copies of the death certificates, they can be found in Indiana records, Ancestry, FamilySearch, and who knows where else. How many times should this same document be cited on RootsMagic and in turn uploaded to the various sites?

    Thanks for your input and suggestions.

  • #2
    Really, it is up to you how thorough you want to be with your referencing. You need to decide on your own 'rules' and try to keep to them so your records are consistent. It sounds as though you like to be very precise, which is great for you.

    Personally, I prefer a very light touch because I do not wish to become bogged down with referencing and have less time for researching. My 'rule', which I do stick to, is just to note the source of the piece of information. If it is the 1851 England and Wales Census then that is all I put. If it is a death certificate my source says 'death certificate'. If it is a newspaper I just list the name and date of the paper etc etc.

    I know my 'rules' would not be enough for everyone but they suit me. Anyone wanting to use my research will know that I did find the information and so, if they are keen enough, they could find it too!



    • #3
      I am with Anne on this one, it is just a hobby and I like to investigate and back up with facts, so citation is not paramount esp if the original document is available, that just needs text so know exactly what it was and not from where. Citation becomes more relevant if it is a transcription, as it could be wrongly transcribed or original document attached one day, or may turn out to be not the correct record for your family.

      I am a firm believer when you are in charge of something you do you, spend too many years of life working for others and pleasing others!
      Family Tree site

      Researching: Luggs, Freeman - Cornwall; Dayman, Hobbs, Heard - Devon; Wilson, Miles - Northants; Brett, Everett, Clark, Allum - Herts/Essex
      Also interested in Proctor, Woodruff


      • #4
        I agree with Anne about finding a standard and method that suits you but if you want a serious guide to citations, this the one as recommend by University of Strathclyde to their genealogy students.