User talk:Jhamstra

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Welcome

Welcome to WeRelate, your virtual genealogical community. We're glad you have joined us. At WeRelate you can easily create ancestor web pages, connect with cousins and other genealogists, and find new information. To get started:

If you need any help, I will be glad to answer your questions. Just click on my signature link below and then click on the “Leave a message” link under my name in the upper left corner of my profile page. Thanks for participating and see you around! Debbie Freeman --DFree 17:13, 25 May 2011 (EDT)


Welcome! [3 June 2011]

Hi Jhamstra!
I'm not an administrator, but wanted to welcome you. I've been following the discussion about tagging etc with interest. You're saying what needs to be said and saying it well! I've been watching this site evolve for a couple years now and have left in frustration (I'm wiki challenged) several times but am always drawn back by the opportunity for collaboration. There is so much potential here! I too just want to put my data here so it won't be lost - and I'm not going to try to convince any jury that it is a 'mature' well-done work; though I've done my best and usually say where I got the info. I know all sources are not equal but will leave it up to the viewer to decide if the source is reliable. I do like the fact that one can discuss doubts and/or conflicting data either on the person page itself or on the related 'talk' page. There is even a template that I've used on ocassion that can be put on a page saying "Conjectured information is on this page". Here's one way I used it: Person:Willis Jackson (5)

Yes, WeRelate is still not out of beta and is a bit clumsy in places. There is just one programmer, Dallan. He has worked at this full time for I don't know how long, but is currently doing consulting work, so changes are done as he has time. He has recently put a notice on the front page to see if he can recruit someone to help with the programming. He is good to be open to suggestions and ideas to make things better. He seems to really depend on the users to tell him what needs the most attention and why. He monitors the watercooler, so hopefully he'll see your comments, but you can always use his talk page to be more specific. I appreciate the opportunity to be in on the building of this site. I think the potential is great, if they can just make it a bit easier to use! --Janiejac 02:41, 3 June 2011 (EDT)


need proof [15 June 2011]

You added Family:James Woods and Unknown (2) as parents of Person:Frances Wood (3) with no sources. The birth record already cited on Frances' page explicitly identifies her parents as John and Mary. ??? --Jrich 00:23, 16 June 2011 (EDT)


Oops! - I typed in the wrong name - it is now corrected.

I have no issue with the sources for her parents - my own stop at Frances Wood.

PS - I am glad someone is watching at least some of what I am entering - we are all subject to error. --Jhamstra 00:51, 16 June 2011 (EDT)


links to other werelate pages [29 September 2011]

Links to other werelate page should be done using double brackets and the page title, rather than single brackets and URLs. For example [[Person:Isaac Newton (19)|Isaac Newton]]. The text after the bar is used as the display text of the link Isaac Newton or it may be left off and you get Person:Isaac Newton (19). This form of link is preferrable to using URLs because it is easier when somebody else edits the page (less line wrap problems in edit mode, less troublesome syntax - no underscores or unicode characters - so fewer errors) and because it clearly shows up as a WeRelate link so safe while the other form looks like any external link possibly on some remote website of unknown safety. It is also conceivable that changes in the future could break the URL form whereas updates would ensure that the intra-werelate links continue to work. --Jrich 14:07, 29 September 2011 (EDT)


Zeeland resource [12 November 2011]

I see that some of your Dutch ancestors were from Zeeland. I'm not sure if you know of http://www.zeeuwengezocht.nl. It's a great resource for Zeeland records. --Jennifer (JBS66) 08:30, 12 November 2011 (EST)


Thank you [15 September 2013]

Thank you for leaving the familysearch.org record of Samuel Fuller & Jane Lathrop's marriage. Genealogical research is so tricky not only because records are difficult to verify but also the confusion added because our modern day spelling rules just didn't apply back then. I would love to know if the name is Lathrop or Lathrope?? Either could be correct. I would think Lathrop may have Norman ancestry where as Lathrope could be more British. I have done more reading in the past few yrs than I think I did throughout my school years lol. I have tried very hard to verify the info in my part of the family tree before I entered it on this site. One of the most ironic things I have uncovered is the fact that my ancestor Samuel Fuller & Frances Cook the ancestor of my best friend for the past 20 yrs were on the Mayflower together. Thank you for adding more sources as well. I truly do appreciate it. All the best.

Jules--JulesLonghurstStiles 04:23, 15 September 2013 (EDT)

Hi Jules,
Among many reasons why English spelling had so few rules are the history of the various invaders who each brought their different ways of saying and writing the same things. So I would not read much into the Lathrop ve Lathrope thing, other than perhaps the Normans were former Vikings who had lived in France just long enough to acquire some French customs and linguistic conventions, which they imported to England. So it was very common the see the same name spelled two or three or more different ways depending on who was writing. Same thing or worse happened with Dutch names because in the early 1600s the Low Provinces became the melting pot of Western Europe after their war of independence from Spain. So in Nieuw Netherlands you find Dutch transliterations of French and other names, not to mention the various dialects of Dutch. Then when the English arrived you find the various English transliterations of those names. So for some persons you can find six or more (arguably valid) variants of the same name recorded for the same person or family.
Regarding FamilySearch it is an amazing compilation of work done by thousands of volunteers working for perhaps a century. But much of what is now online was first compiled into card files and then only more recently computerized. I would not want to estimate the accuracy rate but though it is probably very good, still I have found errors. I would also mention that I have found errors in public records that are supposed to be "archival" quality. You must remember that these records were compiled by humans of varying ability. Generally what I try to do when I find obvious problems with records, is to note the discrepancies between the various sources, rather than removing the suspect ones. That way I leave a trail to follow for the next person who might otherwise get tripped-up at the same places.
Cheers, --Jhamstra 07:02, 15 September 2013 (EDT)
There is a recent biography of Noah Webster that discusses what went for spelling in colonial America. While in the early 1800s, there was something regarded as proper English spelling, as practiced in London, opinions differed whether the new country should follow England or have its own spelling. Even Webster changed philosophies in the course of his life. So spelling was largely phonetic until Webster's 1820 dictionary slowly standardized it (and then different branches of a family would standardize spelling of their name but they might be different). There was no authoritatively correct spelling prior to that: there are some ridiculous spellings in legal documents that were apparently just how it was. Education levels varied and many people couldn't write and relied on others to do their writing. If you follow town records over a long time, you often find the spelling of a surname changed when new town clerks were installed. I have seen wills with a surname spelled three different ways in one document. Chasing one authoritative spelling is applying modern standards to create a false fact. Your only chance is if you have a signature and are talking about one person, and I have seen cases where people signed with different spellings at different times of their lives. --Jrich 10:19, 15 September 2013 (EDT)

Revisions to the Lyle family made 3-4 Jan 2013 [4 January 2014]

Thank you for tidying up my entries to the Lyle family. Those for Martha Maw are subject to change again shortly. I now have the marriage of her parents to enter, and she appears to have had a couple of brothers at least. I have now started to look at the 1841 census for the area as well as parish registers that may have been missed by Family Tree.

Did you have to look up the record for Percy Lyle, or was the name familiar to you? Since I live in the UK I do very little investigation of US records. That is, if it doesn't come for free it doesn't get found (smile). --Goldenoldie 10:45, 4 January 2014 (UTC)


I live in the US of A and I am a very heavy user of FamilySearch.org. It has very good (but not complete) coverage of US vital records. No I was not aware of Percy Lyle or any of the rest of the family. I simply read your Watercooler comment and took a look. Generally if you can find one record for a family you can find more. And I habitually make a Family page for the parents if they are given on a birth or death record. Even if I only know a name it is worth taking the trouble because that is useful information without a single date. Cheers! --Jhamstra 13:55, 4 January 2014 (UTC)

Pages without dates or locations tend to make search results very hard to interpret. People don't always have complete information when searching either, so looking for, say, John Smith and his wife Mary can bring back lots of promising looking pages that aren't even close. It is frustrating. Ideally, my preference would be to see people research enough to at least indicate a country and century, or don't create the page. --Jrich 15:45, 4 January 2014 (UTC)
If you would look at the Family pages in question you would see at least one Child listed with a birth or death date. The reasonable presumption would be that the marriage occurred before the child was born.
It seemed to me that you were expounding a general principle ("I habitually make..."), and so that was what I was addressing. While children are listed in search results, any dates and locations on the children pages are not, nor do they affect the sort order so that the entry may be multiple pages down in the list because it was unable to match the location one was looking for, for example. --Jrich 16:51, 4 January 2014 (UTC)
I was expounding a general principle - when I find the names of parents on a birth or marriage or death record I create a Family page for the parents that only has the name(s) of one or both parents. This does not create Person pages for these otherwise unidentified parents so you should not get "empty" Persons showing-up in your search results. But it does capture the important information about family connections so I or someone can circle-back later and try to flesh them out with more information (which may or may not be available). As with any other new pages, one should always check for duplicates. Occasionally I discover that someone has already created a Family page for these parents.
Please note that (unlike GEDCOM) I do NOT create Person pages for parents when I have no further information beyond their names. I find these "empty" Person pages to be as annoying as your do.--Jhamstra 17:19, 4 January 2014 (UTC)
(It's not meant as an accusation, it's a discussion of principles. I appreciate about empty person pages.) People search for families too, in fact, they tend to be the quickest way to find a page, because a combination of two person's names is much more unique than one name - but certainly not absolutely unique still. In fact, family pages are full of ambiguities: is this the maiden name of the wife, or did she have an earlier marriage, or is the page under "unknown". Example from earlier today: I am searching for Joseph Bulkeley and his wife Silence (Keen) Jeffrey or Jeffries m. 25 May 1713, and it is found as Family:Joseph Bulkley and Silence Unknown. Easy to spot in this case because Silence is not common, but say for Mary, or Sarah, or Elizabeth, or Hannah, or Abigail?? It might be pretty far down the list unless a date is matched. So I am arguing, as a principle, people should consider doing enough further research to at least estimate the date of marriage, or perhaps not create the Family page because of the possible confusion it may cause. --Jrich 18:17, 4 January 2014 (UTC)