Schalene Jennings Dagutis of Tangled Roots and Trees and I made a deal. I would write about how I keep everyone straight while writing my 52 Ancestors post and she would tell me how to find a book on the minutes of the annual conferences of the Methodist church. I found the book on my own but I’m sticking to the deal.
Part 2 – Gathering my eggs
Once upon a time, I worked for an American bank’s branch office in Luxembourg. First in the back office and later as a credit analyst. The skills I developed while working there have benefited my genealogy research. Organization had top priority, always. Much time was spent filing “things” as soon as they hit the desk. I did a lot of copying and pasting – before we had computers. Although I enjoyed the work, I no longer want to keep paper files unless absolutely necessary. The discipline I learned helps me keep my digital genealogy research organized.
Before I begin to write I gather all my eggs in one basket! This means being sure that everything that has been researched has been inputted into my genealogy software, Ancestral Quest 14. Legacy, Family Tree Maker, and Rootsmagic have similar features. I’ve used AQ for over 10 years and am very happy with what I can do with it and what it can do for me.
I check the ancestor’s parents and siblings for any missing information. Then I do the same for his wife/her husband and children. I want all events covered for the three generations before I can go on to the next step. I have to admit that I do not use the full potential of AQ when it comes to Events as I have favored the Notes section (below) for census listings, etc. for many years. [I’m working on this!]
I then generate a timeline which includes parents, siblings, and children with their events; notes* for the main individual, notes for marriage, and sources. The genealogy software will allow you to choose how much or how little you want included in the timeline.
*I’ve always kept notes for all individuals in my database are in chronological order – similar to a story line.
AQ14 gives me a choice between a pdf or a text file. I copy the entire text of the pdf and insert it into my blogpost. The notes, which are at the end of the timeline, are then moved up into the right time period on the timeline. Sources can stay at the bottom for the time being. [Did I mention that I used to do a lot of copying and pasting?]
© 2014 Cathy Meder-Dempsey