Sources & Source Pages
A Source Page is a WeRelate wiki page that contains information about a genealogical reference or source. The importance of sources is that they are the basis of your genealogical data and for what may be considered the proof of the information you have recorded on your ancestors. Facts without documented sources are almost meaningless and become no better than guesses or unconfirmed speculations without that evidence.
Have you ever seen a family history book or genealogy website tracing back a person's family history to medieval times, or to some pre-historic era, or even to Adam and Eve? Wasn't your first question, "What sources of information did the author use to compile this data?" or more simply "What's their proof?" As well-written and as illustratively filled as these books or websites may be, without the evidence to back up their claims, they are only fanciful works of fiction unrecognized and invalidated by any legitimate genealogical authority, and are of benefit only to the author in his or her quest for an ego boost.
In many cases, even a documented source may not alone provide clear proof of an event or date; multiple sources may need to be researched, collected, compared, and analyzed before you can be certain of a genealogical fact.
While this Portal is primarily designed to show you what to do with sources here at WeRelate, it will also attempt to assist you in analyzing these evidentiary source documents in your own genealogical research or guide you to links that may help in that endeavor.
Titling Conventions for Source Pages
To make Source pages easier for others to find, we have developed standard conventions for titling Source pages. In a nutshell, they are:
- Books & Articles: Author. Title (author should be written as Surname, Firstname only; and no subtitles in the title)
- Geographically-oriented records: Place. Title (where Place is recorded in the following order: Town/City, County, State, Country)
- Government & Church records: Place covered. Title
- Newspapers: Title (Place issued)
- Periodicals: Title (Publisher)
- Miscellaneous: Author. Title or Title of the website home page (includes websites with original content that cannot fit into one of the other types above)
For websites that are not Books, Articles, Records, Newspapers, Periodicals, Manuscripts, or other original content, MySource pages should be created for those sources instead of Source pages.
Please review the source page title conventions when adding new source pages and source page title rules for further detailed and helpful information.
Tips & Tricks
Multiple pages for the same Source?
The Sources database was originally created by importing records from several catalogs, including the Family History Library and Ancestry.com. There was a project to eliminate duplication that could be detected by computer, but there remain duplicates in the database that only a human can identify. What should you do if you find what looks like a duplicate?
- Determine if they are really the same source, meaning they contain the same material (the same edition, a film and the original, one is a reprint of the other, etc.). If one is a revised edition of the other, they should remain different pages, and you can retitle one or both to make that more clear.
- If you determine they are both the same source, choose the most comprehensive page, and confirm it is named (or rename it) according to WeRelate's titling conventions.
- Transfer any information from the other source pages to the above page.
- Place #REDIRECT [[targetpagename]] in the text section of the page being redirected. Save.
Sample Source Page
Current & Past Source Projects
Things To Do
Helps for Using Sources
Helps for Contributing to Sources