Unfortunately, the Church hasn't gotten it all together in the various
programs it has put out and/or supported.
For instance, there is only _one_ family tree -- that of God's. We are
all part of that family. And yet, we had _Personal_ Ancestral File.
Jim Greene, one of the people I met while serving in the Family and
Church History Mission, told us that the goal should have been
collaboration all along, and not separate trees.
So we now have a single Family Tree that all people can contribute to.
Now comes into play the next mistake -- not handling sources
correctly. As a number of you have already said, you had to use the
"Notes" feature if you wanted to source an entry. There was even a
code (!) for certain notes.
And yet, when one considers what a source is supposed to do, the Notes
method is not only inadequate, but makes it impossible to lumb the
related sources together.
As source has three elements as well as a repository (place where the
source can be found). The elements are a)Source type and(or) title
b)specific record, and c)actual citation (ie page). Mutliple sources
for the same event are preferred and the best sources are primary
sources, followed by secondary sources. "Other" sources should be used
only for research purposes only, and not as an actual trusted source.
Examples of Primary Sources are those records made _at_the_time_ of
the event. Secondary sources are those records made _after_the_fact_.
"Other" sources are those collections, which include published
histories (family and locality), and unsourced family trees. Just
because a history says that a family is related to those with the same
surname in another location does not necessarily make it so. These
should never be used to establish relationships. If there are no
ship's records to identify an ancestor who immigrated with them in
their country of origin, or other records that clearly identify the
person in both locations (such as a family record made during the
lifetime of the ancestor), then there is no connection that can be
reliably made and none should be presumed or assumed.
Ancestral Quest has an outstanding source system, and I strongly
recommend learning how to use it.
I group sources by type: Birth Records, Cemetery Records, Marriage
Records, etc., followed by the specific type/location of those
records. For instance, I have "Birth Records: California Birth Index,
1905-1995" The repository where this index can be found is State of
California Department of Health Statistics. While the record may be
found in Ancestry.com, Ancestry is only the means by which the record
may be found -- the original is held by the State of California.
Repositories for the U.S. Federal Census are all the NARA (National
Archive and Records Administration in Washington, DC.
Next the specific record is what I am looking at: The (location and
type -- U.S. Federal) (year) 1860 (type) Census.
The citation itself is the roll -or- the location (state and
enumeration district/locality), and page number. Lacking a defineable
page number (for instance in 1850 census), I'll use the ancestry.com
or familysearch.org image number. If the image or record can be
located in FamilySearch, then I'll use its ability to be attached to a
person's record and use the tags. How these will transfer back into
Ancestral Quest -- I don't know because I haven't started playing with
Regardless, it is important that for those who have (with no thanks to
FamilySearch nFS) used notes to source your records, it is time to
start moving the material. I have to do it because in looking at the
way the citation is set up for a located record in FamilySearch.org, I
need to set up my Ancestral question so it can produce the same kind
But in the meantime, I suspect we all have a bit of "playing" to do to
figure out what is going to work best. And, I think that FamilySearch
FamilyTree still has some work that needs to be done to help make this
all come together.