From: D'Ann Still
I am trying to put together a complete notebook of my Direct Lines following the 12 Generation Pedigree Chart that is numbered from # 1 - 511.
I have Family Tree 2005 and I print off the Family Group Sheet for each line.
Some other Charts show the numbering system as: me =A ; my parents as B1 - B2; then maternal as C1 - C2 and paternal as C3- C4 then the next four maternal are D -1-2-3-4 and paternal D-5-6-7-8 then I am not sure... it seems real difficult to me. I am probably making this harder then necessary.
I also have separate files for each and would like for the numbers to be a cross reference too.
Do you also number each of the papers/documents/certificates to coordinate with the files and the generation surname? "B1 document 5" or "document E" for example. Any suggestions would be helpful. -- Thank you,
THANKS for sharing a report of what you are doing with your genealogy data. Figuring out how to organize the family group sheets with related photos and documents is always a challenge.
The method you are describing is a great one.
At this point, the method I use is strictly alphabetical by surname, then chronological beginning with the youngest generation. I put everything into the notebooks, sometimes making copies of a document if it needs to be filed under more than one surname. To me this is easier than referencing back to a file, because I don't want the info to be separated. This also makes it easier if I need to make photocopies of "everything I have on the Smith family" for another researcher. I am not having to hunt all over for each source document. YES, ol' Myrt here does have Smiths on her family tree.
The only vertical files I work with are "A,B,C..." files where I haven't yet entered the data into my genealogy program. After a research trip to a library or archive it's easy for me to throw the papers in the file for the correct letters of the alphabet. I don't worry about alphabetizing what is in the "A" folder until I decide to work on it. Once typing and/or scanning is done, the pages from the "A" folder are placed in top-loading sheet protectors and filed in the appropriate surname notebook.
If someone emails a request about one of my ancestors, I pull the notebook and check the alpha file which fits in the knee hole of my computer desk. It is a "milk box" style with bright yellow Pendaflex hanging file folders. I no longer deal with "paper piles" unless it is for current data-entry or an upcoming column. I took this file box with me to give a talk on organization, and discovered to my chagrin that some of the papers have been in my vertical file for 2 years. (sigh) I tend to work the major surnames, and the beginning of the alphabet on a more regular basis. Next time I've vowed to start with the letter "Z."
I keep my info in this manner because of my truck-driving brother David. He visited our home years ago and asked to see his father's side of the family. I had to pull census records from here, and photos from there, etc., and quickly realized that if I wasn't available to pull things together, all this compiled genealogy wouldn't make sense. So now I make "coffee table" surname notebooks which tell the story from the youngest to oldest known ancestor of a specific surname complete in one notebook.
No, I do not number the documents or pages, because Ancestor "D1" only means something for me, and not the cousin who might have the same ancestor.
I think the most important thing is to EXPLAIN THE FILING METHOD to a novice who might inherit the work. It is a "key" to understanding our filing system and should be inserted at the beginning of each of your notebooks. I printed mine on pink paper, so it will really stand out.
The problem with either system is what to do with information on an ancestor's sibling's children and grandchildren. You are OK, because by your definition, you wouldn't print that info out, since your notebooks are "direct line" only.
Because I file my info by surname, it's just a matter of adding a divider in the surname book labeled "collateral" and include an explanation in my introduction. I do the same thing with a "no known relation" divider, though on some surnames these categories may spill into 2 or 3 notebooks.
I have a lot of "no known relation" pages on my Yockey line. Finding the true parents of Dolly Yockey is my brick wall. It is very important that those pages are clearly filed as not known. I am thinking that when I die, my kids and grandkids will assume all I've gathered is valid, because:
-- they know I do a lot of research
-- the wide variety of document types (land, probate, tax rolls, census, military records, etc.) looks impressive
Yet, experienced genealogist would understand that I might collect a lot of documents before I find evidence of a likely lineage. This is especially true now that I've narrowed it down to 3 men in Pennsylvania who could possibly be Dolly's father.
Happy family tree climbing!
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