Genealogy: Where you confuse the dead & irritate the living....


Surnames: Calaway, Dunn, Evans, Johnson, Lindsey, Rollins, Short & Williams


States: Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, S. Carolina, Tennessee, Texas

Monday, March 22, 2010

New Way of In-putting Unknown Surnames...

If you've read some of my earlier posts, you'll know I'm in the process of re-vamping my genealogy files. I've been trying to blog about the things I'm personally making changes with in my own genealogy work/habits. And in doing so, hope what I write about will benefit others in their own genealogy. So let's get onto the newest change that I'm making.....

When you are in your genealogy program on your computer & bring up the list of names that you have entered, toward the end there, most likely you'll see a long list of "Unknowns" (surnames). Or I know I did. These are the females who married into the family but not knowing their maiden name, they would be listed as "Jane Unknown" (or whatever her first name was) in the Family Group Section. By listing them as such, it can make it kind of hard to know, at a glance, just who these females are associated with & it irritated the bejebbies out of me.

So I've been trying to think of a better way of handling all of my "unknown surnames" & I believe I have finally come upon a workable solution. What I do is list her husband's last name for her surname & attach "unknown" at the end. For a better explanation, let's say Jane married Jack Smith & I don't have a clue as to her maiden name. When I in-put her in the Group Sheet section in my genealogy program, I will include her husbands name now. It will be entered as "Jane Smith-Jack-Unknown". This will tell me that I don't have Jane's maiden name & that she married Jack Smith. Since I have my genealogy program set to list the females by their maiden names, she will be associated with the Smith family & not in a long list of "Unknowns". FYI: If I should be so lucky to find her maiden name later on, it would be easy to correct in the program.

This little quick hint might be well known within the genealogy circle & if it is, I apologize for repeating it here. I just thought it made sense & would, hopefully, make things a little easier for your own genealogy files.

Later, Deb

3 comments:

Barbara said...

Hi Deb,
Several years ago, I came up with another method. I use the husband's name, so that surname stays within the family unit. Better to show. John Smith m. Lucy ? or unknown. I would put, Lucy (__) w/o John Smith. She is now with the Smith family, with her first name. I plan on writing about this and another thing I do, but I did want to alert you to it, and don't want you thinking I am taking your idea. Thanks for sharing your idea though. Also, I hated a huge list of Unknowns also.

Deb said...

Barbara, I "knew" there was something to the old saying "...great minds think alike!" :-)

And hey, I wouldn't think that you had taken my idea. I've done this (genealogy) long enough, that I realize a lot of us have the same ideas/habits...we just don't realize it a lot of the time til we say something. :-) Besides, being a follower of your blog, I know you aren't the type of person to do such a thing.

Can't wait to read what the other thing that you do....

Later, Deb

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