Thursday, June 6, 2013

Pedigree Charts and Family Group Records

Long the standard forms for recording genealogy information, pedigree charts and family group records took a mighty leap forward this week when they became printable on familysearch.org. Randy Seaver wrote a post about this today and early in the day after reading his post it was time to test the newest updates to the familysearch.org website.

The first test was for my husband's and my pedigree charts. The first four generations for each of us is pretty much filled in, but there were some missing pieces of information. Some of the dates and places for events were entered long ago when the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in 1978 encouraged members to submit four generations of family data.


Taking a yellow highlighter to the missing/ or approximated dates and places it becomes apparent where there is need for updating these details. Much of this data is found in my personal database, so the updates will be fairly simple to do. Several of the places are lacking the county and one is an approximated place for birth based on their place of marriage.

For my husband's pedigree chart the missing data includes marriage information for his parents, paternal grandparents, paternal great grandparents, maternal great grandparents.  There are about twenty of these details that need to be added or corrected.

For my pedigree chart the missing data includes marriage information for my parents, two sets of maternal great grandparents, and one set of paternal great grandparents, My mother's information is missing and yet his mother's information is there, both are living. There are about twenty seven of these details that need to be added or corrected.

Our immediate family group record has fourteen details that need to be corrected. None of the LDS data shows, but it did show on other family group records where the people are deceased. For members of the LDS church the nicest feature on the pedigree chart and family group record is the notations for temple work.

To print the charts is very simple, but one should scan the pages before printing to determine which contain actual information. At the family history center today I worked with two people demonstrating how the process works. It is possible to also download the information and eliminate the need for paper copies. Waiting to print until the corrections are made would be more productive. These very professional looking charts will be nice additions to the family history collections of our ancestors.

One great bonus with the family group records is that some viewed today actually included notes and sources on the individuals. These were the exception, but hopefully in the future they will be more common. So, who is going to enter and share that information? That would be us, the current day researcher and maintainers of the family history. The updates are still coming to the website, but we need to work with what we have now. Do note that some of the information may appear to be missing, but in reality is hiding in the background waiting for us to look for possible duplicates for each individual.

What are you waiting for? Go to familysearch.org, sign in, go to the family tree and starting with you and your immediate family work across the pedigree chart to examine each family group. If you do not have the missing data, it is time to start researching in the wonderful records collections under the browse section of the website. Still feeling a little confused? Contact your local family history center or consultant for some help in navigating what is the most wonderful genealogy system in the world.


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