Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Last year I decided that I needed to revisit the research I've done on my husband's family. I just know (hope) I've missed something. But I had to have some way to see what I had.

I didn't want a regular research log format. I wanted a chronology/research log/these are the documents I found log. I really wanted this form to function as an overview of what I have; kind of a one stop shop. My brain likes everything in one place.

Shannon Thomas has published some nifty Evernote templates and I started playing with them. Thank you Shannon for permission to modify and post the new form.

A note of caution. This is not a form to print and take with you. It takes 6 pages to print this person in landscape mode. I think it's better to add Evernote to your phone or tablet and use it as a reminder. Because of this, I decided not to include source citations on this page. I build them in Legacy Family Tree and Evidentia and then add the citation to the image's metadata. 

I start by adding all the documents I have about the person. In August's case, it's not much.

I think August Bidde is the first husband of the second wife of Ernst Trogg. Ernst may or may not be my husband's great-grandfather. Confused? Me too. That's why I need a form.

  • The ID # is the MRIN-RIN assigned by Legacy Family Tree. I added the link to Ancestry to make it easier to jump to his page. So far I haven't found him on FamilySearch.
  • The bold red font serves as a nudge to let me know I have work to do. 
  • I have no conclusion. This person is a mystery and will probably always be one.
  • The alternate spellings section reminds me of all the different ways people have managed to mangle a name.

This next section is pretty much all I know about August. He immigrated in 1874 (maybe), married, fathered two children and died. August wasn't here long enough to leave much of a paper trail. But I still hope.

As you can see, every scrap of information I have goes on the sheet. Once I start a sheet for each of his children, I'll link them in the children's section.

My file ID is the name I assigned to a document in my filing system. It's easy to link to the Evernote copy. The "?" means I'm not sure the document is really about my guy. If I prove it I'll change to "!". The "other things to look for" section can be expanded as I think of new sources. 

Finally, I set up a master index note for each line I'm searching. The index is the first note in the notebook and lets me jump right to research plan. I also added the links to Ancestry and Family Search to the link, but that's probably overkill.