When citing sources, one of the most important things to keep
in mind is that you should always cite the exact source. Richard
Lackey, author of "Cite Your Sources" devotes several pages in
his book to this "rule" and writes that "Any reference must reflect
the exact form in which the researcher personally found the source.
Too many genealogists feel compelled to indicate or infer that
the source of their information was a personally-examined original
document when, in fact, it was a published abstract or the contribution
of a generous correspondent." This always reminds me of a line
from one of Jimmy Buffet's songs that warns "Don't try to describe
the ocean if you've never seen it."
may find it helpful to always alphabetize your sources
by surname. For example, "Gartzke, Ruby headstone."
I thought the rules for citing sources say that the name of an article
goes in quotes.
It all depends on whose rules you follow :-).
Family Tree Maker's footnotes are based on the Chicago Manual of
Style. If you select Newspaper or Magazine
from the Source Media drop-down list in the Master
Source dialog box, Family Tree Maker will automatically surround your
title with quotes, if you select Book or Microfilm
it will italicize it. Some of the other choices will leave the title
as plain text. You can also edit the footnote so that the words and
punctuation for the final text appear any way you want.
I find it helpful to preview a one-generation genealogy report (without
notes) immediately after entering a source so that I can see what the
footnote will look like when printed and, if necessary, edit the entry
while the source document is still at hand. I also check the Master
Source drop-down list in the Source-Citation dialog box to
make sure the title I've assigned each master source is unique so that
I'll be able to easily recognize it if I want to attach it to another
individual or event.
My final step is to preview the Bibliography report so I can
see if all my entries are consistent. When I started converting
my sources, I decided to alphabetize book and article authors
by surname, but sometimes I forget and enter the given name first.
The same holds true for headstones and birth, death, and marriage
certificates etc. These items can be alphabetized by item type
or individual surname depending on how you enter the title: "Headstone
of Ruby Gartzke" or "Gartzke, Ruby headstone."
citing your sources, you should note the who, what,
when, where, and why. Every piece of information provides
clues for later research.
What about census records? What do you enter in all the fields?
This depends on the form the record was in when you viewed it: an index,
printed copy, microfilm, etc. If you've used the same census to identify
several families, the Annotated Bibliography will be more meaningful
if you add this information to the Comments field in the Master Source
dialog box, and perhaps even list the names of the individuals and other
info exactly as it appears in the record. Page and line numbers are
also important. They will be included in the footnote and/or Documented
Events report if you enter them in the Citation Page field provided
in Source-Citation dialog box. However, if you want page and line numbers
to show up in the Annotated Bibliography report, you will need to duplicate
the information in the Comments field of the Master Source dialog box.
You have lots of options when it comes to entering sources and other
items in Family Tree Maker. For example if you assign a reference number
for each source, you can use it to identify the source of information
you add to the biographical note fields. Footnotes without referenced
sources can be used to record name preferences or variations, or you
can edit the footnote so that a complete source entry appears the first
time the source is cited and a short form used whenever it's repeated,
as in the following example (the numbers 1 through 10 in the italicized
example refer to the numbered items 1 through 10 that are in the Endnotes):
Catherine2 Bonnett (Lewis1) was born Abt. 1812 in Lewis County,
West Virginia2,3, and died 02 October 1845 in Wasco County, Oregon
while descending the hill to the Deschutes River4,5,6,7. She married
John Butts8,9,10 01 November 1834 in Weston, Lewis Co, West Va.11,
son of Henry Butts and Margaret Peterson.
how to record your sources depends on how you plan to
use your Family File as a research tool, a presentation
tool or both.
1. Butts, William E., Oregon Pioneer Certificate application, This
collection of records was compiled by William E. Butts, P.O. Box 421,
Burbank, WA 99323 and submitted to the Oregon Genealogical Society
as part of William's application for an Oregon Pioneer Certificate.
The application is on file at OGS and a photocopy in possession of
Dennis and Carla Ridenour.
2. Wojcik, Donna M., The Brazen Overlanders of 1845, (Portland, Oregon
1976), Roster of Emigrants, page 392, Wojcik uses the 1845 trail diary
of Samuel Parker, territorial documents, early Oregon newspapers and
other genealogical records stored at the Oregon Historical Society
as her source of information.
3. Clark, Keith and Lowell Tiller, Terrible Trail: The Meek Cutoff
1845, (Maverick Publications, Inc PO Box 5007, Bend, Oregon 97708),
pages 175-176, The roster of names compiled by Mrs. Keith Clark is
similar to the one included in Wojcik's Brazen Overlanders of 1845
but is a little more complete.
4. Wojcik, pages 313 and 315. Other excerpts from Parker's diary document
the cause of Catherine's death and are found on pages 256, 292 and
5. Butts, Catharine Headstone. This grave marker is located on the
old Conroy Ranch near Sherar's Bridge, Wasco County, Oregon. Photos
and video tapes were recorded June 1991 and are in possession of Dennis
Ridenour. (see FTW scrapbook.)
6. Parker Samuel, 1845 Oregon Trail Diary, Copies of Parker's diary
are on file at the Oregon Historical Society and the University of
Oregon. A transcribed photocopy is in possession of Dennis and Carla
7. Clark and Tiller, pages 52, 107, 109, 114-115, 119.
8. Wojcik, page 392.
9. Butts, William E., Oregon Pioneer Certificate application
10. The Butts surname appears as Butt and Bott in the records of Lewis
and Harrison County, West Virginia.
11. Smith, Robert B. (compiler), Marriage Bonds and Marriage Records,
1816-1865, lists the marriage of John Bott and Catherine Bonnett as
being recorded on page 72 of Book 4. The marriage was performed by
Anthony Spaur on 1 November 1834.
As always, it helps to create a test file and experiment with the different
reports and source and data fields to see what kind of results you get.
Your final choices may be influenced by whether you use your main database
primarily as a research tool, a presentation tool or a combination of
the two. You will want to make this decision before you spent time converting
you existing sources to the new format.
What's the proper way to enter source information?
My suggestion would be to use whatever method works best for you, however
there are several helpful publications available in print or on the
Web that can help you decide. These include "Cite Your Sources, A Manual
for Documenting Family Histories and Genealogical Records" by Richard
S. Lackey and the "Silicon Valley PAF Users Group PAF Documentation
Guidelines." Both booklets provide a variety of source samples and other
helpful tips. Lackey's book sells for approximately $10 and is available
at most bookstores. The Silicon Valley booklet is $3.00, and you can
reach them at 4417 Pitch Pine Court, San Jose, CA 94136, by phone (408-578-4619)
The University of Oregon provides links
to other sites that are especially helpful for citing electronic
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