Saturday, July 7, 2012

Linking Documentation To FamilyTree, An Important Process

The engineers and developers at are in all out mode to complete FamilyTree and make it availble for free to the public.

I am in the group that has been using it in Beta mode and am excited about it's future.

As it is nearing a level it will be introduced and made available to everyone I am changing a few things that are significant that is part of my research. What I am referring to, is where I document my research.

FamilyTree will allow us to link to our documentation. Any online source has a unique URL or web address. Think of the value in seeing a headstone, a story, an obituary, a marriage or death certificate, or any source posted online by another researcher. Think of the awesome value of not having to go find that document when someone else found it and posted on your FamilyTree a link to that document. Realize that you now, thanks to that link, can move on to a different challenge. Pretty dang important. Since it is a one world tree concept, when you or I link a document to my great great great grandmother, we link it for all others to view. It is called collaboration, which the church is intentionally inviting on FamilyTree.

With that in mind, as of yesterday I started using FamilyTree as the only on line place I am documenting my ancestors. I do it for me, I do it for you. You do it for you, you do it for me. I am keeping hard copies using the filing sysem I have written about: Click here

I am excited as to how this will help us all. A grave headstone has a lot of credible information. I use and as part of my research process. In searching Isaac Cragun, son of Patrick Cragun, I found additional facts I hadn't planned on. For example, I was having trouble finding his grave and cemetary. The many spellings of his name were part of the difficulty. I knew what state he died in, Tennessee, so I finally just searched for Tennessee using the 3 different spellings I knew he used.

Hot dang, it worked. I found his grave. But I also found several others in that cemetary. Rather than ignoring the find, or just writing them on a research log I opened another browser, pulled up FamilySearch FamilyTree, and went through the quick process of linking the headstones to their FamilyTree for my future benefit and for all others that come to the tree later.

My point, all linking of documents are best done in FamilyTree, that's what I am doing now, that's what I recommend you prepare to do, or if possible start to do.

The series of photo clips from my screen illustrate the process I went through yesteday.
1- I was having difficulty as I looking for Isaac Cragun in findagrave,com. I came across Elizabeth Shideler who is married to a grandson of Patrick Cragun. WARNING! Begin your search with a plan or you can get lost on bunny trails.

My number one focus is Patrick Cragun, where there is little documentation to support the many stories about him.

Most of his 12 children remained in Tennessee, Indiana, or Virginia. Three of them joined the Mormons and went west. It is you who are descendants of those who stayed I am hoping to connect with. You might have journals or stories that all of us can benefit by. Most of my Patrick Cragun research is on this blog:
This is a photo from There is much more at the website memorial of Elizabeth Shideler Cragun. There are also links to other family members.

I will not proceed much further on her at this time, but I am going to link this memorial to her FamilyTree in Family Search. I may want to go back someday and work further on her family and there are possible collaborating benefits by helping others.

I went to - loggd in, and as I have access to FamilyTree it is my options on the top.

You might check to see if you can get permission to access it. They do make it available for a few new users from time to time, during this beta period.

A quick search for Elizabeth led me to her tree

By clicking on her name I can open her file and find a place to either discuss her in a chat mode or create or work with sources.

Once you create a source you can easily add it to any other applicable person. You can organize your sources in the source box.
Notice what you are required to enter as you create a source: all important for future reference.

Now, as I have completed the linking a new visitor to her FamilyTree file will see by her name their is a source that has been entered.

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