An Ode to my Genealogy Woes

Several months ago I made a post stating that I was “Reconstructing Profiles” and I promise you, that was no joke. As you've probably noticed, I haven't posted those new profiles. There have been some major kinks in my plan, so I will explain.

From November to December I not only did some hardcore researching, I started to transfer all of the 900 plus people in my family tree to a more comprehensive format. Even though the chaotic filing system, I have going on here at home, makes perfect sense to me, it doesn't exactly translate well to the page. I get my system, I understand the notes on my sources, but continuing my research has always been the most exciting part for me so I didn't always invest the time cool my jets and type everything out before continuing with my research. I made minimal notes to my actual family tree and continued with my research.

I like to use to enter the information for my family tree. I'm comfortable with the format, although I definitely wish I could tweak some things to my satisfaction and preferences. It's also visually easier for me to flip back and forth through my family tree than say,

I do use many of the resources on the website. Their resources are endless and when you chat with them for assistance, they are so nice and helpful. Going to their main hub in Salt Lake City, Utah, is definitely on my Bucket List, but for now they offer so much online and at their Family History Centers, that are located worldwide, I won't need plan my trip there for a while. The things that I wish were different on the website are 1) there aren't any privacy options and 2) anyone can make changes to your family tree.  

One thing that I don't prefer, on, is how it saves some of the information to your family tree. For example, when you save a census record to your family tree on it will enter that into the Facts Section as a residence (not a census record) and based on how that information was entered into their system, it will often leave out valuable gems of information (like the fact that my ancestor was blind, what their occupation was, etc. etc.). When I began transferring my ancestors to a new family tree, more thoroughly, I went ahead and took the liberty of documenting each bit of information and was diligent about citing my sources. When I transferred my GEDCOM to the version of Ancestral Quest that I had purchased, all of the extra bits of information, I had gone to great lengths to painstakingly type out, did not translate from the GEDCOM to either of the two software programs I planned on using. Oy vey, has this been a bit of a nightmare!

So the two software programs I had decided to use were:
  1. Ancestral Quest - because of all the amazing charts options you have to choose from and because it allows you to keep your information private
  2. RootsMagic - because although you don't have many chart options in the free version, it does allow you to prepare a Narrative Report. The version of Ancestral Quest that I purchased does not allow you to print Narrative Reports.
One thing that irks me is that when you have Baptisms entered on your GEDCOM and you upload that to a software that is primarily formatted for LDS (Church of Latter Day Saints) life events, the info for those Baptism records don't show up on any of your reports because their software is formatted to show "Christenings". The problem is that you can't just simply go back and switch the event from a Baptism to a Christening in, you have to delete that entry and retype the information. And in order to have the other software programs recognize the Baptism information, you have to go into each individual profile to set it to do that. So far, I have over 200 people transferred to my new family tree format and short of learning computer code so that I can create my own family tree software (which is so tempting), I will have to go back and retype much of the information I have already transferred to the new family tree. The problem is, its not only the Baptisms that aren't showing up, its all of the custom events that I entered into my family tree.

So back to the new profiles I was going to construct.....I was going to use the new software to do that, but things aren't exactly going as planned. Isn't it funny how so many ideas are much better in theory????

There may be a better way to do this, I just haven't figured it out yet. For now, I will go back to creating profiles in the same manner that I had already begun posting. I'm so, so sorry for the delay. I have lots to share with you and I will begin posting it as soon as I stop kicking myself in the arse.   

Happy researching!

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