Family Historian comes with a variety of helpful documentation, for people who are already users and for people considering buying the software.
Help File, Guides, Tutorials etc.
- You can access the Help File by clicking Help in the current window or pressing the F1 key. There is a Search tab and a Favorites tab to aid finding topics.
- You can access the Quick Start Guide via Help > Quick Start Guide or Help > Getting Started, or online at Family Historian.
- There is a companion book called
“Getting the Most from Family Historian”. This was included as a free The Portable Document Format (PDF) is a file format developed by Adobe to present documents in their original formatting, independent of software, hardware, and operating systems. PDF files can contain text, graphics, links, and buttons, form fields, audio, video, and file with ƒh versions 3, 4 and 5, and used installed Tutorial Files. From version 6, the book is only available for purchase in hard copy from e.g. Calico Pie and Amazon, and uses the Family Historian Sample A Project is a Windows folder, created by Family Historian, which contains all your Family Tree information recorded in Family Historian. Normally located in the Documents\Family Historian Projects folder. for its tutorials. There is not yet a version of this book for ƒh7.
- Calico Pie Limited is a UK software house, and the publishers of Family Historian. offer a quick tour of ƒh and some video tutorials which can be accessed via Help.
- Jane Taubman is the originator and administrator of the Family Historian User Group. She has been using Family Historian since Version 2 and researching her tree on and off since she was 19. She runs occasional Family Historian Courses. has an online overview of Family Historian – Software for the Genealogist.
Online Documentation and Downloads
With Calico Pie’s permission, we have been able to put much of the documentation online (in various formats) for existing users, and for people interested in purchasing the software.
- The Version 7 Help file is here.
- The Version 6 Help file is here.
- If you prefer to use an ebook reader for the help files there is an epub and a mobi file.
- The V5 tutorial files work in V6, and the V5 book “Getting the Most from Family Historian” is still relevant (although the new features in V6 are not discussed); you can download the book and the associated tutorial files from Calico Pie’s Download Archive. There’s a comparison between Getting the Most from Family Historian for versions 5 and 6 below.
- There are epub and mobi versions of the Version 5 help files.
- “Getting the Most from Family Historian” is available in a number of formats:
- Via the ƒh V5 menu: Help > Book: Getting the Most from Family Historian”
- As a pdf
- As a large font pdf (14pt 378 pages)
- As a very large font pdf (20pt 819 pages)
- As an epub or a mobi file
- You can download the book “Getting the Most from Family Historian” and the associated tutorial files from Calico Pie’s Download Archive.
“Getting the Most from Family Historian” Comparison
This table compares the V5 and V6 books chapter title by chapter. Although the chapter titles have not been changed, the changes to the screens mean most screenshots will not match exactly and the process of working through the tutorials has been extensively revised.
V5 uses installed Tutorial Files whereas V6 uses the Family Historian Sample Project for its tutorials.
The best location to install those Tutorial Files is C:\Users\Public\Documents\Calico Pie\Family Historian\Tutorial Files\ , which you may need to create. This folder is preserved by the Backup and Restore Family Historian Settings Plugins are small programs that allow new features to be added without upgrading Family Historian itself; some plugins are written by Calico Pie and others are written by users..
|Version 5 Chapters||Version 6 Chapters||Comments|
|1||Getting Started with the The Focus Window is the primary workspace window. It displays information about a chosen person, called the ‘Focus Person’.||1||Getting Started with the Focus Window|
|2||Editing Records with the The Property Box is the primary window for data entry and for viewing details of stored records. It is used with records of all types.||2||Editing Records with the Property Box|
|3||Introduction to Diagrams||3||Introduction to Diagrams|
|4||Pictures & When you add a picture, video, sound recording, document file etc into a Family Historian project, a Media record is created to represent that media item within the project; the Media record includes a link to the actual Media file. Part 1:
The Property Box
|4||Pictures & Media Part 1:
The Property Box
|5||Pictures & Multimedia Part 2:
The Multimedia Window
|5||Pictures & Media Part 2:
The Media Window
|6||Events, Events are things that happened to an Individual and Attributes are things that described them. & Family Historian version 6 and below supports two types of Notes: Local notes (associated with a single person, record, or fact); and Shared Notes or Note Records, that can be linked to multiple records and/or facts. Version 7 introduced Research Notes. in the Property Box||6||Facts are one of the key concepts at the heart of Family Historian; they are how you record the things that happened to, or described, each ancestor (Individual). & Notes in the Property Box|
|7||Browsing, Searching & Editing in the The Records Window provides a comprehensive view of all the information stored within a Family Historian project.||7||Browsing, Searching & Editing in the Records Window|
|8||Diagram-based Editing||8||Diagram-based Editing|
|9||Setting the Style, Layout & Content of Diagrams||9||Setting the Style, Layout & Content of Diagrams|
|10||Smart Trees and Wall Charts||10||Smart Trees and Wall Charts|
|11||Scaling & Printing Diagrams||11||Scaling & Printing Diagrams|
|12||Recording Your Source: “where information was found”. This could be anything from an archive in a county records office, a book, or even a relative’s recorded recollection. Citing your Sources helps to show how you reached a particular conclusion about an Individual.||12||Recording Your Sources|
|13||Web Search, Web Hints & Web Clipping||New chapter|
|14||According to GEDCOM, a Place should hold “The jurisdictional name of the place where the event took place…” , Maps and Timelines||New chapter|
|See 17. Reports||15||Reports and Narratives|
|See 18. Books & Booklets||16||Books & Booklets|
|13||Introduction to Querying is a very powerful feature that allows you to specify and save criteria for identifying a set of records of a given record type.||17||Introduction to Queries|
|14||Writing Custom Queries||18||Writing Custom Queries|
|15||Compare, Merge, Split, Copy and Export GEDCOM, an acronym for GEnealogical Data COMmunication, is a specification for exchanging genealogical data between different genealogy software. It is a file format that most genealogical programs and online trees recognise. Files||19||Projects: Compare, Merge, Split, Copy & Export|
|16||Named Lists are a way in FH to group related items — which can be records of any type(s) — so that you can easily find them to work with. and Record Flags are a way of marking an Individual record.||20||Named Lists and Record Flags|
|17||Reports||See 15. Reports and Narratives|
|18||Books & Booklets||See 16. Books and Booklets|
|19||More Wizards and Tools||21||Website Generation and Other Wizards & Tools|