Is the computer on or is it just me? September 25th, 2012
Whew, who knew a break from technology would be that long. I sure didn’t! Yesterday I ended my unexpected hiatus by booting up my desktop and opening every genealogy program I own. I guess I had decided enough was enough and it was time to do something tech related again.
My focus yesterday was the Love family. (Of course I chose them, I always start with them after a hiatus.) One of the first things I did was break out my printout of all Love surname marriages for Beith parish. I made the list months ago using credits from Scotlands People. Since I knew I was going to be dealing with a lot of Loves eventually, I spent the credits at the time and figured it couldn’t hurt.
Once I had the list out, I made lists of my ancestors siblings. Using the list I was able to list possible spouses. I say possible because I wasn’t prepared to make any commitments to a spouse until I was sure of them. So armed with my new lists of possible spouses for the siblings, I bit the bullet and got myself some more credits. However, I like to make my credits go as far as I can. Knowing what I know about the Love migration pattern, I went ahead and just did a general LOVE search for deaths in the Statutory Registers. Note: The Statutory Registers began in 1855, before that they used OPR (old parochial registers), however Scotlands People warns that the OPR’s were infrequently used, so aren’t as accurate. I decided to use the Statutory records because I had already found Robert and Elizabeth Love’s deaths in them, so I thought their five siblings might be as well.
6 pages or 6 credits is worth it for me, because that’s 150 LOVE deaths between 1855 and 1930 in Beith parish. Since the age is also listed, I can narrow down quickly if any of these are my ancestors or their siblings.
I quickly was able to find an Andrew Love that fit the parameters for the brother of my 5th Great Grandfather. The record confirms that this Andrew was the son of James Love and Janet Fleming. It also shows that he was also a Grocer (which definitely runs in the family) and the widower of Margaret Jack. Now that I have a spouse name, I can look on my marriage list and find out when they were married. If I wanted to spend another credit, which of course I did, I could do a search for their children’s names. I held off on looking at the actual records of their children’s births for now. They aren’t in my direct line, so I can hold off on verifying them for a little while longer. I did add the marriage and children into my database with placeholder source citations so that I would know I need to still look at the originals.
I’m making some definite progress on the children of James and Janet. I still have more death records to check to see if I can narrow down the other three children. Then it’s onto the Wills & Testaments database on SP for more records if I can find them. Not to mention the census records, I’ve barely touched the Scotland census yet, since I’m trying to get lists of spouses and children to differentiate between all the same names.
That was actually a pretty productive day for being a day back after an extended break. The only thing left is to transfer my hand written notes into Microsoft OneNote and to finish making the printout for Beith death records. Oh and of course I have to update the database on my website. Sheesh, that stuff sure piles up quick doesn’t it!
A little after Summer Vacation September 13th, 2012
Most people take time off during the summer and travel around to various sights. We’ve never been much of a vacation family. So my little blog hiatus has nothing to do with actually going somewhere. I’ve just been busy keeping up with life as it speeds by. Over the last few weeks, I’ve helped my neighbor get one of her dogs through surgery. The next week, my heart broke when the same dog passed away from an infection. On top of all this I’ve been busy getting the house organized again because it’s back to school time and my mother needs some help getting all her paperwork squared away for a new year of driving the school bus.
That’s where I’ve been!
I have been able to get some projects done both on the sewing machine and on my genealogy! I haven’t gotten as much done in my database as I wished, but I have been watching a lot of webinars when I get the chance. I do love learning all the new things everyone is talking about. At first when I listen to a webinar, I feel so overwhelmed with how much I don’t know. Thankfully, that is usually quickly replaced by the excitement of putting all the new information to practice!
I’m sorry I’ve dropped the ball on my Redesigning my Chaos series, I’m definitely still working on it, I just haven’t had enough time to sit down and type up the entries! Hopefully after this weekend, my time will free up a little more. If not, I’ll just have to find another way around it because I miss my blog!
The Original Taylor Tree August 28th, 2012
I’ve come to the point in my Family File Cleanup where I have to make a decision. Whether or not to enter the descendant report for John Taylor into my family file. I have two Taylor descendant reports, the other being the one for Bartholomew Taylor (pictured above). It was easy to use the Bartholomew report because it was easily backed up with record proof. Not entirely but for the most part. Now that I’ve come to adding John and the earlier Taylors in, it gets more difficult.
The reason there is a decision at all is it gets harder to verify the families are correct because I’m venturing past the 1850 census now and into the 1700′s. So I’ll only have a number count for the children in the census and birth records are less frequent and less accessible. I have to decide whether to add these next few generations in or to leave them off. The pros to leaving them off would mean a complete fresh start with the early Taylor generations. The downside is that I’ve seen enough of the parish records over in Salisbury, Maryland to know that having a guideline would be a tremendous asset. You see, there are a lot of John, William and James Taylors in those records. I’m also finding in this cleanup that my original trees were a bit more accurate then I originally thought. Which is a good thing. There are inaccuracies but they are quickly rooted out.
What I think I’ll end up doing is adding them into the tree but not adding them to the website until I’ve got more than just my descendant report as a source. I definitely don’t want my website information to get out of hand or inaccurate. I’ve noticed while getting my tree synced on Ancestry.com that a lot of my pictures are being added to people’s family trees. I guess I hit the genealogy jackpot with that picture of Jane Menzies-Love because it is a popular one in member trees. The only problem is that no one is contacting me to compare information or trees. Since I know that my tree is being used as a resource, I don’t want to lead anyone in the wrong direction. There’s no reason that adding them to the website can’t wait until I’ve got more information in hand. I don’t like to take family lore completely out of the loop, but I’m definitely learning more about what can happen with internet genealogy.
So for now, I add the descendant reports as unsourced family records and then try and find the proof in the actual records next time I’m over on the Eastern Shore. I know I say I’m going to these places a lot and then never go, but it’s just the way it goes. I’ll get there someday and I just want to be ready for it when I do. My biggest flaw is getting flustered and overwhelmed when I walk into the libraries. Not anymore, I’ll have a clear, concise list and plan in hand the next time!
Saturday Night Genealogy Fun – What’s Your Ancestral Name Number? August 18th, 2012
Today has been a very strange day. Now I am wide awake at 11pm and don’t know what to do with myself other then continue on the Cleanup Project. I decided to take some time out for some fun. Saturday Night Genealogy Fun to be exact!
Here are the “rules” as Randy Seaver at Genea-Musings laid them out:
- Determine how complete your genealogy research is. For background, read Crista Cowan’s post Family History All Done? What’s Your Number? For comparison purposes, keep the list to 10 generations with you as the first person.
- Create a table similar to Crista’s second table, and fill it in however you can (you could create an Ahnentafel (Ancestor Name) list and count the number in each generation, or use some other method). Tell us how you calculated the numbers.
- Show us your table, and calculate your “Ancestral Name Number” – what is your percentage of known names to possible names (1,023 for 10 generations).
- For extra credit (or more SNGF), do more generations and add them to your chart.
- Post your table, and your “Ancestral Name Number,” on your own blog, in a comment to this post, or in a Facebook Status or Google+ Stream post.
To get my numbers, I created an Ahnentafel Report in FTM2012 and I counted the ancestors with known surnames. This means I didn’t give myself credit for the females who I don’t know surnames for. I was doing good until I got to my sixth generation back. Then by the time we get to the eighth generation the bottom has completely dropped out of my results.
The biggest reason for the drop off is all 10 of my known paternal 3rd great grandparents (generation 6) are immigrant ancestors. For this reason I’ve run into some challenges on finding some of their parents.
For the extra credit, I decided to see how far back I go and it isn’t much farther and the numbers just get lower! For this report, I also used my Original family file for this report. So these numbers might eventually go down even more or possibly go up!
All in all it was nice to see where I stand. It makes me motivated to get those blanks in the sixth generation filled in.
RMC: A little CSS tutorial August 17th, 2012
Before I jump into the most complicated part of the tutorial (in my opinion), I wanted to do a little bit of CSS learning. I don’t want to leave you in the dust by being too vague about CSS coding. My only hope is that I make things a little clearer instead of more confusing.
To get started it might be easier to take TNG out of the picture and just show you the basic purpose and functionality of CSS.
When I first open up my HTML Editing program, I can start a blank HTML document. I usually use this option because it will fill in all the important parts the browser needs to determine what exactly the page is trying to do.
The above example is a little more sparse then what I’m used to but it’s perfect for this example. This shows the structure of an HTML page.
- html: This tag opens the page and tells the browser exactly what type of code it’s going to be interpreting.
- head: The head tag is an important one. A lot of the behind the scenes work happens in the head tag. Our next step will be taking place there.
- title: This is simply telling the browser what to display in the title bar of your browser.
- body: This is the meat and potatoes of your website. You content is going to go here.
The highlighted section above shows how I link my separate stylesheet to my HTML page. Now whatever CSS coding I put in testpage.css will apply to whatever page is link to the stylesheet.
Now lets learn some of the more basic coding.
I used the ‘body’ tag as the example to show you that whatever CSS code I apply to the body tag in this file will apply to my HTML page to whatever is between the body tags.
The only exception to this is that the code will always use the most recent open tag.
So using the example above you can set a default font size and color in your body tag. For me, my divs are usually one for content and one for a navigation menu. So if my div one is my content and I can set it to have a slightly larger font size or even just a different color. Now whatever I set the font at for div one will be for the whole thing until I either close the div tag or open a new one. It’s a heirarchy that once you realize what’s going on, it’s actually quite fun to mess around with… Well, as long as you remember which tag is which (why I leave notes) and then remember to close them (again with the notes).
Above I had two example pages. One is a CSS and the other an HTML. I want to show exactly what divs are in a very visible way.
You can see the two different boxes in the example above. However we don’t call them boxes in CSS because boxes are something different that we aren’t getting into right now. Now lets play with the divs a little bit.
Now if I wanted the text at the bottom to be it’s own div and not wrapped around the other two, I could by creating another div.
As you can see, I nested another div into backbone of the site.
I made it the full size of the backbone, and I floated it to the right. I did this so that it will come out on the bottom of the longest section. If I had floated it to the left, it would have been covered by the right div.
Now on the example page you can see that the last paragraph has default back to the body tag style choices. Also, the gray background no longer goes behind it because there isn’t anything continuing the backbone div down the page. It is still open, but it doesn’t have anything to put a background on.
Today’s post was mainly to help set up the basics of what I’m trying to explain about CSS. I really recommend playing with CSS options on a few tutorial sites I love:
Previous RMC Posts:
- RMC: Part 1 is the Planning Stage
- RMC: Creating a Database and Installing TNG
- RMC: My Design Inspiration Sketch
- RMC: Programs You Might Need
- RMC: The Site Design Images- Part 1
- RMC: A Note on Things to Come
- RMC: New Plan and New Background
- RMC: Creating the New Banner
- The Test Website!
Disclaimer: Again I have to say that I’m not an expert. It’s possible I have no idea what I’m talking about. Everything I know about CSS and HTML I’ve taught myself over the years on an as needed basis. Feel free to ask me questions and I’ll try my best to answer them.