* Source templates and websites

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jclifford
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Source templates and websites

Post by jclifford » 14 Feb 2021 16:44

I have a very simple and perhaps stupid question about using FH7.

All my research for the past year, and most of it before that, is based on websites, mostly from images of original documents like parish registers and census sheets or digitised books, some from transcribed lists like FreeBMD or the GRO online index. I have usually added a source refering to the original document with the website cited as "Publisher".

Now I am trying to find my way into the new concept of source templates and find that one of the Essential Collection is a Web template.

So should I use the Web template for everything or just for websites without images or transcriptions?

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Re: Source templates and websites

Post by LornaCraig » 14 Feb 2021 17:04

I wouldn't use a web template for everything. Only use it as a last resort. The desription of the web template says:

"One source record per website. If the data comes originally from a more permanent source type (such as a birth certificate) you are recommended to record the source as such, and store the URL of the page where you found it, as part of that source record. You are normally recommended to only use a website as your source if there is no other good alternative."
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Re: Source templates and websites

Post by jclifford » 14 Feb 2021 18:12

Thank you Lorna.

Can you tell me what "One source record per website" means?

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Re: Source templates and websites

Post by LornaCraig » 14 Feb 2021 19:42

It means they (the authors of FH) are suggesting that if you use the website template you should create one source for (for example) Ancestry, another for (example) Findmypast, etc. So in effect they suggest that you create a 'lumped' source for each website, and then when you find something on that website all the details go in the citation.

But if you are downloading images they would have to be linked to the citation as well, rather than to the source. That's why if you have an image of something like a birth/baptism record it's better to create a separeate source for that document. You can then attach the image direct to the source record, and if you wish you can record the URL of the web page where you found it. You will see that some of the templates have a field specifically for the URL. This is similar to what you were previously doing when you created a separate source for each image and recorded the website in the Publisher field.
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Re: Source templates and websites

Post by jclifford » 14 Feb 2021 21:03

Thank you Lorna, that is very helpful.

I don't normally download images so using a template, one source per website and putting the URL in the citation will be the way forward for me.

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Re: Source templates and websites

Post by HildrethC » 15 Feb 2021 18:48

Hi John and Lorna,

This is my first post so I hope you don't mind me gatecrashing :-).

Finding an accurate and pleasing way to craft and display source citations in reports has often been a dilemma for me. Because of the position in the world I live, the vast majority of records I use in building my tree come from online websites of one type or another.
I have spent some time exploring V7 to see what works for me best and have found a template I can use when downloading records from websites that have numerous databases. This of course covers the 4 main commercial sites but also others like FIBIS, findagrave, genuki, Family Search and many others we often regularly use.

What works for me is the advanced version "National Government Records - National Archives UK" template that I adapt to suit most circumstances easily.
For example if I want to cite a record image from "Yorkshire Marriages" accessed from findmypast.co.uk just filling in the template gives me a pretty good footnote

"Yorkshire Marriages," online database with images, Findmypast (https://search.findmypast.co.uk/search- ... -marriages: accessed 30 January 2021); marriage for Jonathan Webster and Mary Robinson 26 Sep 1857 (license), Parish Church Scalby, Yorkshire; Archive reference PE 134/9, Page 74, No 148; citing The East Riding Archives & Local Studies Service, East Riding of Yorkshire Council

I can design a relevant title so I can find it easily in the records window
Yorkshire Marriages - Jonathan Webster & Mary Robinson (findmypast)

The source of the source can be entered either in the credit line box; or as in this case at the end of the entry I make in "item of interest box" - as Findmypast includes records from 6 repositories in the Yorkshire Marriage database.

I love the simplicity, as I generally just load the one template and "get on with it"
It is a good feeling to have my head around this previously complex and challenging part of the pastime I love.

also
Can any one please help me understand the best way to Copy a previously used citation so I can edit it for another record from the same database? Hopefully to save time but also to gain consistency in presentation.

Thank you so much

Colin Hildreth

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Re: Source templates and websites

Post by LornaCraig » 15 Feb 2021 19:38

Colin, I'm glad you have successfully devised a method which suits your needs. It illustrates how flexible FH is.
Can any one please help me understand the best way to Copy a previously used citation so I can edit it for another record from the same database? Hopefully to save time but also to gain consistency in presentation.
If you locate a record where the Source + Citation combination has previously been used you can select that citation in the 'Sources for' pane attached to the Property box and then click the Copy Citation to Source Clipboard button, shown below.

copy citation.JPG
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Then paste it into the 'Sources for' pane in the next record using the icon immediately to the right of that one. Then click the scroll icon in the same toolbar to open and edit the citation.

Alternatively, if you are entering several similar items in succession, you could experiment with the Automatic Source Citation pane. Click the 'Auto' scroll button near the right hand end of the main toolbar, then click the Help button at the end of the Automatic Source Citation pane for further guidance. One thing to beware of is that you must remember to disable the automatic source citation when you have finished, or you will end up accidentally adding the same citation to a lot of other things!
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Re: Source templates and websites

Post by jclifford » 17 Feb 2021 12:18

The more I look into the template system, the more puzzled I get.

Each of the templates has a note explaining that there will be one source per record, such as a line in a church register or a particular will.

So there no longer seems to be any distinction between a source and a citation and the number of sources has grown enormously. If I have a database of 10,000 records and I have the normal life events for each then I will generate 50,000 sources, and if half of my records are for individuals born after 1840 then there may be another 20,000 census sources or more.

Have I missed something? I can understand that it would be useful to have templates which distinguish clearly between fields defining the source and fields to be used when the source is cited for a particular person but one per record seems ridiculous.

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Re: Source templates and websites

Post by ColeValleyGirl » 17 Feb 2021 12:26

One per record ('splitting') is how many of us work (almost all of the information goes in the Source record and very little in the Citation). FH can handle very large projects very well, so the number of records isn't an issue. There are exceptions of course -- I 'lump' the GRO Index as a single source, and put the details of the Index entry in the citation.

Equally, many of us are 'lumpers' -- few Source records and much more data in the Citation.

Neither approach is 'right' or 'wrong', but there are consequences of each of them: see Citing Sources: Method 1 and Method 2 for a comparison.
there no longer seems to be any distinction between a source and a citation


Don't forget, many source types will provide information about many individuals -- a Birth Certificate will usually be cited for the Principal's birth, the name of each parent, the mother's maiden name, the father's occupation, the residence of the informant, etc; so a single Source Record will still have multiple citations pointing to it.

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Re: Source templates and websites

Post by NickWalker » 17 Feb 2021 12:46

jclifford wrote:
17 Feb 2021 12:18
So there no longer seems to be any distinction between a source and a citation and the number of sources has grown enormously. If I have a database of 10,000 records and I have the normal life events for each then I will generate 50,000 sources, and if half of my records are for individuals born after 1840 then there may be another 20,000 census sources or more.

Have I missed something? I can understand that it would be useful to have templates which distinguish clearly between fields defining the source and fields to be used when the source is cited for a particular person but one per record seems ridiculous.
Yes you may well generate 50,000 sources but what's the issue with that? If instead you go for the 'lumper'/'method 2' strategy then you'll end up with hundreds of thousands of citations but they'll be much harder to find and identify. A 'splitter'/'method 1' user will have one source record for a census household that's easy to find and only recorded in one place in their file but a 'lumper'/'method 2' user will have the details of that household duplicated in multiple citations scattered across their file with any corrections/updates to the census record potentially having to be made in each of those multiple copies.
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Re: Source templates and websites

Post by AdrianBruce » 17 Feb 2021 13:40

jclifford wrote:
17 Feb 2021 12:18
... So there no longer seems to be any distinction between a source and a citation ...
The distinction between what's in a source-record and what's in a citation element is laid down in the GEDCOM specification so there is still a distinction - things like the primary / secondary / etc, assessment of the source in relation to the fact, are still in the citation element (only), for example.

If indeed the source-record and citation element were in one-to-one correspondence, then I for one would have all my database design instincts screaming at me that this was indeed wrong. However, as a devoted splitter, I can assure you that this simply isn't the case. A source-record for a post 1813 baptism (say) will, as Helen points out, support a number of different facts (probably at least 3 for the child and at least 2 for each of the parents), resulting in a number of different citation entries (7 in the "probable" case I quote).

What's certainly true, as I understand it, is that most of the supplied templates in v7 are written using the Method 1 / splitting idea. However, it's arguable that (with the exception of a few lumped sources such as BMD indexes) it's virtually impossible for the compilers of these templates to have come up with a satisfactory and agreed set of Method 2 / lumped sources. Why? Because each person is liable to lump their sources in a different manner. My impression is that most UK based genealogists who admit to lumping, will lump all of a census year together for a country - thus, the 1881 England & Wales on Ancestry could be a single source-record. Yet in the USA, for whatever reason, many will provide a source-record per county - thus the 1880 Federal Census will have a source-record just for San Mateo county CA, another for Alameda county CA, etc. And as another example, I've no idea how most Method 2 lumpers will lump their UK parish registers....

None of this changed with v7 except for the provision of the source-templates where, perhaps for pragmatic reasons or perhaps not, the template providers fought shy of providing more than the occasional Method 2 / lumped template.
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Re: Source templates and websites

Post by jclifford » 17 Feb 2021 14:28

Thank you for all the comments.
ColeValleyGirl wrote:
17 Feb 2021 12:26
Don't forget, many source types will provide information about many individuals -- a Birth Certificate will usually be cited for the Principal's birth, the name of each parent, the mother's maiden name, the father's occupation, the residence of the informant, etc; so a single Source Record will still have multiple citations pointing to it.
AdrianBruce wrote:
17 Feb 2021 13:40
A source-record for a post 1813 baptism (say) will, as Helen points out, support a number of different facts (probably at least 3 for the child and at least 2 for each of the parents), resulting in a number of different citation entries (7 in the "probable" case I quote).
If you use the Shared Event/Witness feature in FH then only one citation is necessary.

Nick: I have always used Method 1 for censuses in AncestralSources because it does not follow the one source per record mantra - it gives several citations for each source and uses one source for several lines on a census.

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Re: Source templates and websites

Post by LornaCraig » 17 Feb 2021 14:30

jclifford wrote:
17 Feb 2021 12:18
Each of the templates has a note explaining that there will be one source per record
That's not quite true: there are some which are Method 2/Lumper templates:

Civil Registration Index
Book/Pamphlet/Monograph
Directory/List
Website

And even in the case of 'one source per record', as Adrian had pointed out, the single source can be cited for several different facts and the assessment levels (which are part of the citation) may be different. A death certificate is primary evidence for the death fact but only secondary (or even unreliable) evidence for the deceased's date of birth because the informant who registered the death may have got their age wrong. You might also want to add different notes to the different citations in some circumstances, so the source /citation distinction is still important.

And of course if you want to use templated sources there is nothing to stop you creating your own Method 2/Lumped templates.

Nick: I have always used Method 1 for censuses in AncestralSources because it does not follow the one source per record mantra - it gives several citations for each source and uses one source for several lines on a census.
It does follow the one source per record mantra. The AS method 1 for censuses creates one source per census household (unlike Method 2 which uses one source per census year, and all the household details have to go in the citation).
If you use the Shared Event/Witness feature in FH then only one citation is necessary.
The witness feature can only be used to show who had key 'roles' in the event. It cannot be used to create (for example) an occupation fact for a bride's father or a residence fact for the parents of a child who was baptised.
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Re: Source templates and websites

Post by jclifford » 17 Feb 2021 14:35

Mea culpa - my last post should have said

If you use the Shared Event/Witness feature in FH then only one citation per event is necessary.

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Re: Source templates and websites

Post by NickWalker » 17 Feb 2021 14:44

jclifford wrote:
17 Feb 2021 14:28
If you use the Shared Event/Witness feature in FH then only one citation is necessary.

Nick: I have always used Method 1 for censuses in AncestralSources because it does not follow the one source per record mantra - it gives several citations for each source and uses one source for several lines on a census.
But if you have a birth certificate do you not create an occupation fact for the father? A residence record for both parents? I'd recommend using Method 1 for all the primary source types in AS for exactly the reason you use it for census - to paraphrase your comment: they create several citations for each source and use one source for several items of evidence on the certificate. All birth/baptism/burial/death sources are likely to create multiple citations to record residence and occupation and perhaps other information too.

In common with others like Helen, I do use the 'lumper'/method 2 for records where I only have a bmd index reference because they naturally only have 1 fact/citation for each entry and so it just isn't worth creating a separate source. I also use that as an indicator that I only have an index reference. If I ever get the certificate I would then turn it into a 'proper' method 1 source.
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Re: Source templates and websites

Post by jclifford » 17 Feb 2021 18:43

I can see your point about BMD certificates, But I make much more use of simpler (and less expensive) sources for life events. If, say. a baptismal register happens to give a date of birth as well as baptism it is easy to create another event for the same individual and use the Copy/Paste Citation facility in FH.

I have tried creating a source from a template and not filling in the fields which I consider more appropriate to a citation - and FH will allow me to do this and save the source. But as soon as I use the source and fill the citation fields FH changes the title of the source to person specific.

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Re: Source templates and websites

Post by LornaCraig » 17 Feb 2021 19:16

If FH is changing the title of the source when you fill in some of the fields then those fields are not Citation fields, they are Source fields. If you view the Source in the Citation window you will see that the Source fields are in the upper panel and the Citation details are shown in the lower panel. Nothing you enter in the lower panel will change the Source title.
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Re: Source templates and websites

Post by AdrianBruce » 17 Feb 2021 19:20

jclifford wrote:
17 Feb 2021 18:43
... If, say. a baptismal register happens to give a date of birth as well as baptism it is easy to create another event for the same individual and use the Copy/Paste Citation facility in FH.
...
as soon as I use the source and fill the citation fields FH changes the title of the source to person specific.
FYI, copy and paste of citations is exactly what I do as a splitter. It's just that, with more of the information back in the Source Record, I'm copying a smaller payload. I think.

Re the 2nd point in the quote above. I would certainly agree that the supplied templates aren't much use to a Method 2 / Lumper on the basis of what you describe. But we're back to the point that your view about what's appropriate for a citation may not match someone else's view, and that therefore the central design and supply of acceptable Method 2 / Lumped source templates is next door to impossible. Which suggests that Method 2 guys can use Source Templates, but, they have to roll their own - presumably by modifying the Method 1 templates that have been supplied? No idea how easy that is....
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Re: Source templates and websites

Post by tatewise » 17 Feb 2021 19:52

I think we are in the area of the information gap between what FH & GEDCOM formally calls 'Sources' and 'Citations' and what users believe are sources and citations. As has been mentioned before, most current FH Source Templates only offer Source record fields and few if any Citation fields, i.e. they are mostly Method 1 'splitter' Source Templates.

If you have a Baptism record that also identifies Date of Birth, what would go in the Baptism Citation and Birth Citation?
The answer largely depends on whether you are splitting or lumping...
If splitting, all relevant details are in the one Source dedicated to the Baptism record, and the Citations are mostly empty.
If lumping, the relevant details must all go in the Citations possibly with differences between the two Citations.
The current predefined Source Templates do not support the latter lumping strategy very well.
You need to construct your own Source Templates with Citation specific fields.
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Re: Source templates and websites

Post by jclifford » 17 Feb 2021 22:28

Thank you Mike, that seems a good summary with an interesting idea in the last line.

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Re: Source templates and websites

Post by jclifford » 18 Feb 2021 18:49

I have now tried writing my own source template and found it easy to do, with the help of Help.

I tried first by cloning an existing template (Testamentary Records) with some success but I could not find a way to move the existing fields down from the source area to the citation area and noticed a strange effect which must be a minor bug in FH: I changed the title of the new template to "Wills and Administrations" and this duly became the first part of the title of the source which I created from the template, both in the list of Source Records and when I displayed the citation details (by double clicking on the citation in the citation window of the Principal's property pane). But the title shown on that citation still began with "Testamentary Records"!
Anomaly.jpg
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I then tried creating my own new Source Template and that has worked perfectly - so thanks again to all the contributors to this thread.

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Re: Source templates and websites

Post by edmacke » 25 Feb 2021 18:06

I am just starting to explore the templates in FH7, and I really love the idea.

But I started with the Newspaper template, and immediately ran into the "splitter" / "lumper" conundrum.

I understand why you would want to have a separate source record for each citation, i.e. "splitting".

What I do not understand is re-entering / repeating information that never changes for each source record. For example, the built-in Essentials Newspaper Item template makes you enter the publisher and location every time you create a source citation. But if I cite an obituary from the edition published Jan 1, and then a news article from Jan 2, it's not like the publisher and the area the paper covers suddenly changes!

Similarly, the Advanced "Book: Basic Format" template has you re-enter author, title, publisher, place of publication every time. If I cite something from the book that's on Page 1, and then something from Page 2, the author doesn't change!

The whole concept of repeating info over and over again makes so little sense that I feel like I'm missing something!

Luckily, FH lets you create your own templates, and here's My Newspaper Item that I feel reflects sanity: The stuff that's universally true for this source is at the top, the stuff that changes every time I cite it is at the bottom. I guess that makes me a "lumper"... and I'm OK with that :D
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But one thing I can't figure out... you'll notice the footnotes generated by my custom template only include the "universal" (non-cite specific) data.

But a citation (with similar data) that's based on a pre-FH7 generic template includes cite-specific information in the footnote.

Is it possible to include cite-specific info in the footnotes when using my new FH7-based custom template? If so, how?
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Re: Source templates and websites

Post by tatewise » 25 Feb 2021 18:23

Yes, it's explained in Help page Source Template Formats under How to Use Data References or Functions within Formats.
Use data refs starting {%CUR~CITN...%} instead of {%SOUR...%} e.g. {%CUR~CITN.PAGE%} for Where within Source.
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Re: Source templates and websites

Post by edmacke » 25 Feb 2021 19:01

Yeah, I saw that but I couldn't find a reference of all the fields that were available. For example, the Help mentioned that you can use {%CUR~CITN...%}, but it wasn't clear what data fields were available for that reference. For example, how do I know that {%CUR~CITN.PAGE%} and {%CUR~CITN.DATA.DATE%} are valid without somebody telling me? Sorry if that's a noob question. I'm sure it's available somewhere...

Also, can you help explain the difference between a Source Template Definition (which I get to via Tools > Source Template Definitions... > Edit) and a Source Template Record (which I get to by clicking the gear icon in a citation)?

When I specify footnote format in the Source Template Record, {%CUR~CITN.PAGE%} doesn't seem to work but citation-specific fields like {Page_Etc} do (see below). Not sure what works in a Source Template Definition since I'm not sure exactly how they work...

Example: {%CUR~CITN.PAGE%} IS NOT resolved
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Example: {Page_Etc} IS resolved
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Re: Source templates and websites

Post by edmacke » 25 Feb 2021 19:47

I think I may have figured this out....

When you "Add Citation", and select a Source Template Definition as your source, it uses that definition to create a new Source Template Record that's tied to that specific thing your citing.

So using a Source Template Definition for 5 citations means I will have 5 Source Template Records.

In part, I noticed this because if you modify a Source Template Record (which you do by opening a source citation, clicking the gear icon next to the Template, and clicking "Go to source template record" ), instead of check marking showing up in the Source Template Definitions window's "Used" column it will say "mod".

If you click the "Compare/Sync with Source Template Record", FH will display all the usages of that definition and which ones are different. For ones that are different, you can "re-sync" by altering the Definition to match the Record, or vice-versa. Slick!

Still doesn't answer why {%CUR~CITN.PAGE%} doesn't work but {Page_Etc} does... but as long as {Page_Etc} works I'm happy!
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