User talk:Cos1776


Welcome to my 2017 Talk Page [23 September 2017]

If you have a comment or question about a specific WeRelate page (Person, Family, etc.) that I am watching, please leave your message on the Talk page there. That way anyone who shares an interest can be included in the discussion.

I am happy to correspond on this page about general things or other pages that I am not watching. To leave me a message, select Add topic from the menu on the left.

If you leave a message here, I will respond here as well, so that we can keep the messages together.

If you wish to send me a private email, please select more> Email this user from the menu on the left.
Thanks and Best Wishes! --cos1776 02:19, 2 January 2017 (UTC)

My Talk page Archives (2009-2015)

Thanks for the help you gave me on Benoni Loftin and Susannah Burtonshall.--Maggie 03:58, 24 September 2017 (UTC)

Support patrol text 20 Jan 2017 [21 January 2017]

The following point needs stressing:

"For sources found at or other commercial websites, add a link to the relevant Ancestry page. This is especially important if the source cited is exclusive to"

"Relevant" is a very important word here, particularly when it comes to census quotations. Too often users have copied the reference at the bottom of the Ancestry page (the one that leads to the image). When used, this leads to the Ancestry home/welcome page (which isn't very useful). We need a form of words for getting around this. People should be reminded that if they quote the details on the top of the census, then it should be able to be checked using any agency. "Data obtained through the facilities of" really ought to keep Ancestry happy. Perhaps we should suggest that users quote the Ancestry "Collection Name", just like they ought to with FamilySearch.

There are no census templates for any other countries than the US. Canada and UK censuses ask for fewer details and templates might be easy to set up by someone who knows how to make them.

This may or may not have to do with sources: Some users don't understand the citing part of the Person page and use the text area instead to add biographical detail. But no one has told them that, in our software, double, triple or tabbed spaces are equivalent to a single space and a space at the beginning of a line leads to printing the data in Courier script. I expect these facts will be going into our new users guide, but it might be worth considering duplicating it under Source patrol.

Please don't ask me to join the Source Patrol. I'm busy enough with Places. But fixing red-lined places on Person pages (something I do to break the monotony) leads to all sorts of problems that have to be sorted ad infinitum.

regards, --Goldenoldie 21:41, 20 January 2017 (UTC)

The link to is hardly more than a free ad for Ancestry. Personally I think every link to should be flagged comparably to no sources at all, i.e., help improve WeRelate by replacing this link. In the U.S. where I do most of my work, the vast majority of Ancestry citations can be replaced by links to free websites. Documents before 1923 are not copyrightable. Even if ancestry owns the scanned image (doubtful, probably borrowed from the Mormon Church, Ancestry only providing an index in many cases), they don't own the content which they did not author, and was actually written so long ago it is not copyrightable, and therefore it can be transcribed verbatim without violating copyright. --Jrich 03:08, 21 January 2017 (UTC)
I am going to venture a guess that the original suggestion is referring to content on WeRelate:Source patrol. Please correct me if that is not the case. I couldn't agree more that the content there and on most of the other patrol pages is due for an update. There is currently a large scale project underway to revise and reorganize Help content across the site. It is not quite ready to be open for comments yet, but it includes this type of instructional text, so your suggestions are timely and welcome. As we finalize the reorganization plan, we will turn our attention to the content details of each page. We intend to review all previous comments and ask for new ones to incorporate what we have learned over the years. To make sure that your suggestions are not overlooked, could I respectfully ask you to re-post them onto the talk page for that patrol? That way we can discuss and incorporate them there and the history stays together. Respectfully, --cos1776 12:35, 21 January 2017 (UTC)

I was quoting from your draft on the new introduction to Source Patrol that you put up yesterday. --Goldenoldie 16:26, 21 January 2017 (UTC)

Sorry, but that is not my text. It dates back to the 2012 beginning of the page. I did edit the page yesterday, but it was only to add a new volunteer to the patrol. --cos1776 17:31, 21 January 2017 (UTC)

Date Format [6 February 2017]

I've seen that work was being done on date format specifications. Forgive me for not paying detailed attention on that - am I correct in assuming that it's a subset of the last non-XML GEDCOM format? I didn't think anything else would really cut it...

--jrm03063 22:15, 6 February 2017 (UTC)

Still within 5.5.(1) limitations (and ambiguity), but then again, aren't most other g-programs as well? --cos1776 23:34, 6 February 2017 (UTC)
Kind of what I thought - just wanted to be sure. It seems like WR relies on GEDCOM's extent (and limitations) - which I think is fine for the most part. --jrm03063 23:56, 6 February 2017 (UTC)

Next step: Review your GEDCOM [6 February 2017]

You're not done yet!

Now that you have uploaded William Thomas 2.ged into our review program, it is time for you to match your data to ours. Your next step is to review and resolve any potential warnings that your file might be showing and to match place names, source names and families to pages that may already exist in our database.


  • You must complete all the steps before your GEDCOM can be considered for import. - We will keep your file in the queue for two months to give you time to finish, and you do not have to finish all at once.
  • If you did not follow the instructions for preparing your data before uploading your file or if your file does not contain at least one date and place for each person with sources, it is likely that your file will be rejected.
  • Volunteers are here to help. Please read the instructions first, but if you get stuck or have any questions, you can leave a message on the page for the GEDCOM review team. One of our volunteers will respond shortly.
  • Once you have completed the review and marked your GEDCOM Ready to import on the last screen, one of our volunteer administrators will review the file again and finalize the import. This usually happens within 24-48 hours. Please allow a little extra time around the holidays. When the import is finalized, you will receive a follow up message here on your Talk page.

Click here to enter the review program
You will see more instructions once you are in.

WeRelate is different from most family tree websites. By contributing here you are helping to create Pando for genealogy, a free, unified family tree that combines the best information from all contributors.

--WeRelate agent 03:20, 7 February 2017 (UTC)

William Thomas 2.ged Imported Successfully [6 February 2017]

Congratulations! The pages from your GEDCOM have been generated successfully.

Now you can:

For questions or problems, leave a message for the volunteers on our GEDCOM review team.

--WeRelate agent 04:16, 7 February 2017 (UTC)

New contributor ... but [17 February 2017]

Hello ! Please, see this :

Amicalement - Marc ROUSSEL - --Markus3 14:18, 17 February 2017 (UTC)

ok, thanks. --cos1776 14:24, 17 February 2017 (UTC)

Keffer family [1 March 2017]

You have been making changes to the Ephraim Keffer family of Hespeler, Ontario.

I thought you might be interested in a bit of background information. A few year ago I discovered this Ontario branch of the Keffer family in WeRelate. I am not related to them (at least, I didn't think so when I started) and decided that since I knew where to find all the sources, perhaps I ought to clean up and expand the entries which had originally been hazily entered by an American member of the family.

In Ontario genealogical circles the name Keffer is well known because Marian Keffer was one of the founding members of the Ontario Genealogical Society. She was a single lady who died a number of years ago, but she is remembered in a prize given annually by the OGS in a contest to find the best essay on family history, with citations being one of the most important parts of the presentation.

The Keffer family arrived in Ontario from Pennsylvania in the late 1700s. There were two brothers, each with a large family and when the grandchildren couldn't find any other settlers to marry, they married their second cousins once removed! I was able to trace them up to the early 20th century and then was forced to stop, not only because of WR's deceased only rule, but because Ontario BMDs and Canadian censuses have secrecy rules that forbid publication of more recent details.

Looking at the date of birth for Unknown/Living Keffer (female), I am quite sure her name could be found in the 1911 census, but that wasn't available when I did the research. But if her name turns out to be Marian, you know why I left her out.

How did I find the Keffers were related to me? The sister of my 3x great grandmother married a man named Quantz and two of his sisters married Keffers. You see what I mean about second cousins once removed.

If the Overview committee has been communicating lately, I'm afraid I have missed it. Computer problems have erased vital information from time to time.

Regards --Goldenoldie 17:28, 1 March 2017 (UTC)

Hello. It is nice to hear from you. Thank you for the background. It is interesting and always fun to learn about these folks. I am not related. I just stumbled upon the family group while trying to resolve one of the "Living" pages. Since I had the other family members right in front of me, I thought I would go ahead and enter the records for them. I was hoping to be able to figure out which sister was the one who married, but no luck there in the shallow digging I did. Please feel free to have a crack at it. Your knowledge on the family (and the Canadian records) far surpasses mine. :) Best wishes, --cos1776 17:49, 1 March 2017 (UTC)

John / Jehu Hawkins & Sarah (Hawkins) [8 March 2017]

I am assuming that you entered this families data. Please contact me re additions & needed changes. Phil Hawkins, 15:56, 8 March 2017 (UTC)

I am not sure to which page you are referring. Can you provide a link? Thanks, --cos1776 16:02, 8 March 2017 (UTC)

Edit of Person:John Rogers (43) [10 March 2017]

I was just glancing at the edit(s) that led to the automatic email received a couple of days ago. I am glad to see that some changes have been made given the glaring errors I found on discovering the page a couple of months ago. But I am wondering if Smithfield should be considered as a place in our database. It is basically a meat market (still there--aroma evident on the walk from the Underground to the Society of Genealogists), but notorious for the capital and corporal punishments which went on there centuries ago. Our places database can include cemeteries and some castles, but should we include places of execution?

I had a look at our entry for Tyburn (which took over from Smithfield by the 18th century) and have altered its location, but nothing else. Tyburn is a little bit different because it was a village.

I must get brave and have another look at London sometime soon. When I got to the old City of London and its myriad of churches (each was a parish with a parish register, most still available), I was stymied as to how to present them. Some churches were just up the street from the next one--and then they merged using the names of both churches jointly, and then added a third, etc.

We should be persuade our users to follow the timeline:

  • until 1899 outside the City of London: "place, [name of the county (Middlesex, Surrey, Kent, Essex)], England",
  • from 1900 to 1965: "place, [name of] Metropolitan Borough, London, England" for the areas that were absorbed then. (See the [[Image:Greater London.png|map of Greater London]] available on many pages)
  • since 1965: "place, [name of] London Borough, Greater London, England"

I can't see how to follow the three-part rule that we are supposed to use outside the US and Canada for post-1900 era unless we insist that areas and localities within the boroughs are omitted.

Just some thoughts. I'll get back to sorting out the county of Kent now.

/cheers, --Goldenoldie 11:40, 10 March 2017 (UTC)

I agree with you re: Smithfield. Let's turn it over to the Place patrol for a decision.
Re: the naming of Place pages in the London area post-1900 - I understand what you are saying, and it makes logical sense, if you were to go down the road of creating Place pages for the many nuances of the local government authorities in the London area since 1900. I was not aware of a decision made by the Place Patrol or the OC to treat England differently from other countries with regards to the geographical 1900-rule. I can not find that decision discussed on the Patrol's talk page or Help:Place pages. Can you fill me in? Thanks, --cos1776 14:05, 10 March 2017 (UTC)


Yes, Smithfield needs to go to the Place patrol (of which I am a member).

The Metropolitan Boroughs of London and the later London Boroughs were given their places in WR about a year ago. They are set up properly so that both Westminster, Middlesex, England, and Westminster (London Borough), Greater London, England, go to the right of the pipe and the left of the pipe automates to Westminster, London, England. This is a problem that work on the US hasn't had to contend with. Because I cut my teeth in WR working on places in Ontario, Canada, which had name changes in 1840 and 1867, I gradually figured out what had to be done. What was bothering me earlier today is what happens when a user wants to refer to an area in Greater London that is not a London Borough, but part of one. If the event occurs in, say, Highgate before 1900 the user can say Highgate, Middlesex, England, but if the event occurs after 1900 the user really ought to say St. Pancras, London, England (for 1900-1965) or Haringey, Greater London, England (for after 1965) and shift Highgate to the description box. Yes, it's getting confusing.

Problems like these do not only apply to London or even to the UK. Have we ever tried to tackle what I still think of as Yugoslavia? And one of our French-speaking users has been confounded with a post-WW2 reorganization that occurred in France.

I tried to interest the Place patrol in this problem when it first came up a year or two ago, but no interest was shown so I decided to sort it out for myself. When I was working on London, Dallan came along and asked if I was having any problems and I pointed out that a list of sources for, say, Highgate, Middlesex would not link to the continuing group for Highgate, London, without relocating every source individually (I am talking about lists of over 100 sources for each well-populated area.) He rewrote a bit of program and now they do.

This same bit of programming now allows hamlets anywhere to be redirected to the township or parish in which they are located. In "What links here" there are redirected placenames. If one of these is clicked and then re-saved, the name shows up in the "Also known as" box. This is a very handy way to indicate variable spellings. Some of the Family History Library Catalog variables shown in the "Also known as" box have never been redirected. I amend these as I find them.

We may tend to think that most entries people make will consider events of the centuries before the 20th. But as time goes on this is getting to be less so.

/cheers, Goldenoldie

John/Jehu Wilson & Sarah (Hawkins) [10 March 2017]

Re John Wilson (432), Alt. name Jehu

I assume(ed) you originated this family. Sarah is my 1st cousin 6x removed.

All Hinshaw records refer to this family a Jehu & Sarah (Hawkins) Wilson. John should be changed to Jehu, and Maybe John has an alternate name, though I think that that would be incorrect. My feeling is that the cursive Jehu in the old records was incorrectly recognized as John. A rapidly scribbled letter e can look very much like an o, and the letter u like an n. In a family Bible copy sheet that I have it would be very easy to have misread it for "John."

It is my intention to add to Sarah's personal area data that I have later today, including the Hinshaw references.

A side note, is it possible to word wrap around picture in that area. If so how or where are instructions.

Phil Hawkins--PA 15:18, 10 March 2017 (UTC)

Thank you for the link. Now I understand. I will respond on his talk page, Person talk:John Wilson (432), in a few minutes. --cos1776 15:35, 10 March 2017 (UTC)

Removal of Cateogry Links [13 March 2017]

Please take note of my discussion topic I sent to User:Khaentlahn on his Talk Page under the topic entitled Categories for Speedy Delete. A page edit he performed recently removed over two dozen active linked Surname Categories that I made when I created the page 8 years ago. He has also performed a number of other edits related to WR cemetery pages that seem to be useful improvements but for which I have not fully evaluated yet due to my time constraints. His comment that surname category pages are "obsolete" also seems to me to be a personal observation rather than a community or management decision, and should not be used as a basis for making multiple edits affecting pages created and used by others. Was there a separate discussion on this topic for which I am not aware? --BobC 13:25, 13 March 2017 (UTC)

Well... setting my personal opinions aside ... I am not aware of any official decision to actively remove Categories from pages where they already exist. Categories have been discussed before, and, as a I recall, the only decision made was to leave them alone for now, since there are still a few users who want to use and maintain them. Is Khaentlahn or anyone else aware of a decision otherwise? --cos1776 14:10, 13 March 2017 (UTC)

GEDCOM stuck again?? [26 March 2017]

I've just posted a query on Dallan's talk page because a GEDCOM is taking so long again. But I don't know how often he even reads his talk page notices anymore. Should I send a direct email instead? Once a GEDCOM is delayed, I find something else to do and it is sometimes hard to get back to reviewing it. I wonder how many folks try to upload and then never get back for the review process??? Any statistics on that?? --janiejac 19:26, 26 March 2017 (UTC)

Yes, I would recommend that you send him an email. That is usually a better way to reach him now. I wouldn't say that this is a common occurrence, at least not until this week when it has happened twice to you. I'm sorry you're experiencing some difficulties. The other times it has been fixed with a server reboot, so hopefully that is all that is needed again. Since I began working with the uploads, I have frequently reached out to Users who never return to do the next steps to actually get the pages created. Most never respond or take the help that is offered to them, so it certainly isn't for lack of outreach or support. I am happy to help anyone who needs it. --cos1776 20:20, 26 March 2017 (UTC)

The parents of John Langdon (1747-1793) [30 March 2017]


Just wanted to say, as a brand new user, thanks for looking over my material and helping me to integrate it here.

When I was doing my initial review of possible matches, it was suggested that the John Langdon, husband of Mary Walley, was a possible match. I didn't know quite how to respond, as yes, that is the John Langdon, and Mary Walley, from my Gedcom, and upon whom I have done much detailed research, but the parents as listed on WeRelate are wrong. The true parents, per multiple resources, are Nathaniel Langdon (1695-1757), and his wife Abigail Harris (1717-1792). Because the WeRelate page states his parents were a Lewis Langdon and his wife Rachel, I put "not a match" and figured I'd bring attention to this after my Gedcom was accepted. But since you're looking at this now, there's no time like the present. Note, aside from any question of sources, quality of citations, etc, John's daughter was Abigail Harris Langdon, showing a clear tie to his mother, Abigail Harris. Hence, not Lewis or Rachel.

I have an extensive ancestry of these people, but did not upload it out of respect for your policy of not importing people who date before 1750. I can also point interested parties to a detailed article from the NEHGS Register on this couple.

To recap, thank you very much for your help, and with your guidance, together we can clear up this error.

All best,--W4h2t7c6 17:44, 30 March 2017 (UTC)

EDIT TO ADD: A quick internet search reveals that Lewis Langdon and Rachel Cooley, the parents listed on WeRelate, indeed had a son John, born 1745, and who probably died in 1828. So it appears someone confused the two Johns. I have removed the John noted above, i.e. the husband of Mary Walley, from the incorrect family, and added back in a new John, b. 1745. I also found Nathaniel and Abigail in the Werelate database and have added them as parents to the proper John Langdon, i.e. the husband of Mary Walley, to prevent this mistake from being repeated.

Hello and welcome! I am in receipt of your message, but cannot delve into the particulars too much at the moment as I am traveling. Finishing up the review and upload of your file was one of the things that I wanted to get done before going out of town, so I am also glad that it was completed. Your file was one of the better ones that I have seen lately, so thank you for taking the time to include your sources. I will try to take a closer look at the pages surrounding the families above in the next couple of days, but from your description, it sounds like you handled the resolution of the incorrect parents appropriately. If I see anything amiss, I'll let you know. Please do not hesitate to let me know if you have any questions. Best Wishes, --cos1776 01:02, 31 March 2017 (UTC)

"Links to other websites are not allowed" [8 April 2017]

In response: I have seen this message in response to various attempts to add sources, either within the articles or using any other method. Actually I even get it when trying to mention an example URL editing here on your talk page. For some time the first article I have tried working on has been on William Hastings (1). I attempted to make the sourcing more clear by referring to the Early English Books project website run by Michigan University, which is the handiest way to cite Dugdale, who should be indicated as the main/only source for some of the facts on that article. Today I made a return to make a new effort and eventually succeeded, to make a repository entry for that website, but even to cite using that repository entry you should cite a URL.--Andrew Lancaster 12:07, 8 April 2017 (UTC)

Cemeteries for Leeds [19 April 2017]

I see you have added a cemetery to [[Place:Leeds (metropolitan borough), West Yorkshire, England]]. As is explained on said page the Metropolitan Borough of Leeds only came into existence in 1974. The two cemeteries listed are far older and would be better linked to the [[Place:Leeds, West Riding of Yorkshire, England]] page which deals with the city for the greater part of its existence.

At least I hope the two cemeteries were in Leeds before 1974. Without doing a fair bit of researching on a part of the country I don't know well, I can only hope so. They may have been in one or two of the outside parishes that became part of the "big city" in 1974!

This is one of the difficulties for family historians of the huge reorganization of administrations that occurred throughout the island of Great Britain 3/4 of the way through the last century. It's taken ages for me to get my head around it, and I can sympathize with those of you living in different countries where there hasn't been such significant change.

I'll try and alter the place of these two cemeteries later in the day, but I can't get around to it immediately. Personally I tend not to add cemeteries to lists of places.

On another topic, I am trying to draft a different way of presenting UK county pages--grouping together all the administrative districts that occurred over the centuries (hundreds, registration districts, county and municipal boroughs, urban and rural districts, and the post-1974 non-metropolitan and metropolitan districts); and then listing the local ancient and civil parishes in one long alphabetical list, possibly as a table to show the various districts they were in over the centuries. There are too many different types of places on county pages. Mis-spelling places has led to numerous duplicated entries. The draft is in its very early stages. I welcome comments, but don't expect a completed task any time soon.

/cheers, Pat --Goldenoldie 09:53, 19 April 2017 (UTC)

This seems exactly why the 1900 rule was set up and this problem seems to be a direct result of abandoning that rule. After all the location on earth hasn't changed, only the ephemeral names assigned to that place by man. The question is, are we naming the location of the cemetery as it was when the person was buried, or when the descendant visits/visited the grave, the latter event very possibly occurring sometime after 1974? --Jrich 14:15, 19 April 2017 (UTC)
For reference, the pages in question were part of the place matching exercise that is done during a GEDCOM import. We would have to do some digging and re-read all of the discussions that took place regarding the 1900s rule to see if cemeteries were specifically addressed. I've spent time this morning doing some of that and was not able to find a definite answer. Most of the titling discussions concern whether or not cemetery titles should be restricted to the county level, but all discussions indicated that modern/current location names were used in the title and that matches pretty much everything that I have seen here. If someone did specify that cemetery page titles should also be restricted to their 1900 place name, that must not have been very well thought out. From a practical standpoint, we should title cemetery pages in such a way as to make them easiest to find and link to, since that is the whole point of creating them in the first place. By far, the majority of place names coming in for cemeteries (both manually and via GEDCOM) are those that match the title in Find A Grave (i.e modern place name), which is also the most-cited source for internment locations and photos here now and most likely going forward. This is not an endorsement of the reliability of general cemetery information on Find A Grave, but rather an observation of the reality following years of cleaning up pages and importing GEDCOMs that are produced from many different types of genealogy programs and sites that cover the globe. Cemetery pages with titles that differ too much from the Find A Grave title are more likely to remain hidden from our Search results and therefore inadvertently duplicated. So, you then have time spent searching for and not finding the correct page, followed by time spent creating a duplicate, followed by time spent finding and cleaning up the duplicate later. If we keep this in perspective and remember that we are talking about the page title and not the actual contents of the WR page (which can and should note and correct errors posted at Find A Grave), it seems to me that it is logical to avoid re-inventing the wheel and keep it simple and easy for our users to do what we want them to do. These would all be good topics to discuss on either WeRelate talk:Place patrol or Portal talk:Cemetery, if anyone would like to start some discussions there. --cos1776 16:52, 19 April 2017 (UTC)

Amsley family [28 April 2017]

Thanks for your help

EKBDVA--EKBDVA 13:35, 28 April 2017 (UTC)

Revert [11 May 2017]

Hello ! Quel est le problème ? ---> - Amicalement - Marc ROUSSEL - --Markus3 09:50, 11 May 2017 (UTC)

Hi Markus! Hope you are well. I would like to ask you the same. :) "ABT" "Abt" and "abt" are all acceptable. Most of the "ABT" that you see comes from the imported GEDCOMs, because automatically changes all date entries to uppercase letters. Regards, --cos1776 10:36, 11 May 2017 (UTC)

Question & comment [13 May 2017]

Could you contact me privately, I have a concern, I don't want to broadcast publicly. gardnerneal(at) --SkippyG 18:29, 13 May 2017 (UTC)

Gosfield South [21 May 2017]

I removed the "from redirect" from your edit so that the three alternates are balanced. Gosfield North and the two Colchester townships need the same treatment. I think it's Colchester, but I am writing from memory. The list under Kent will tell. I think Kent County did its history a disservice when they decided to merge everything and call the county Chatham-Kent.

Am now working on New Brunswick. The Wikipedia editor provided a very good analysis from which I am trying to pick out the best bits historically. Interesting to find that Janiejac and I both have an interest in a little place named Maugerville which, until yesterday, was "unknown" in our list.

/cheers Pat --Goldenoldie 07:02, 21 May 2017 (UTC)

GEDCOM Export Ready [21 May 2017]

The GEDCOM for tree pedbye test 1 is ready to download. Click here.

Wikipedia inclusion [30 May 2017]

It is not like it is my preference to include wikipedia at all. That is my compromise. I would like to someone with a sincere interest in this person look at many sources and actually write a biography that would do more justice than the 3-line wikipedia summary that is more about her parents than her, and other than "educator, author and lecturer" tells us nothing about why she is prominent. There is a standard way for doing wikipedia inclusion. It has been in use for years. The way you are doing it is not it.

There is a whole separate argument about wikipedia as a source. It is not. It is not accepted in most college classes. It draws its information from other sources and has no original knowledge of the information. Originally it was posted because presumably that is where the original information was taken from, which was at the time appropriate, but now there are better sources, ones which if they differed from wikipedia would simply mean wikipedia is wrong. The gravestone alone gives all the information about birth and death posted from wikipedia. The baptism record shows her parentage. So wikipedia is not necessary as a source for the genealogy information. The inclusion offers historical context and belongs in the narrative and the standard way of doing it makes sure the legal notices are there, clearly giving credit to wikipedia.

It might be useful if you were to explain primarily why the standard inclusion doesn't suit you, and secondarily, why you think it should be a source when it is no longer being used in that way, now that more authoritative sources are cited. --Jrich 18:40, 28 May 2017 (UTC)

Ok. We agree on the quality of WP as a source, so no argument there. We obviously disagree on whether or not the WP intro text 1) must be transcluded when it exists and 2) must be placed in a certain location on the page.
Regarding #1, transcluding is not a requirement, but rather an available feature. I usually choose not to transclude WP, because of all of the reasons you have outlined above regarding WP as a genealogical source, and because our transclusion routine results in text that is not searchable (there are other methods by which it could be searchable). Also, a lesser concern is that WP text is dynamic. Our program only runs the retrieval once a year now, and the present method does not provide the retrieval date on the main page (standard practice for citing anything from a dynamic website). Finally, as you pointed out, the transclusion often includes extraneous info, which we usually trim from other cited sources, so transclusion is not always a good choice. Others have have been saying this same thing for a while for the WP transclusions we do on both Person and Place pages.
Regarding #2, placing WP transclusions in the "Personal history" field is also not a requirement. It is wholly appropriate to create a source citation when you are citing a source. The citation links to our internal Source:Wikipedia page, whereas the other method does not. Placing the cited text (even when transcluded) in the field designated for it is also entirely appropriate and allowed. There is no loss of legal notice or credit to Wikipedia, so that doesn't seem to be a valid argument. Frankly, I am surprised that you are advocating that the text from a source as unreliable as WP should be placed front and center on the page.
We could open up a discussion about whether or not we should retain WP citations when more robust sources have been presented. I do think there is value in the Wikidata project that is underway, so I also think there is value in providing a link to a WP page when one exists for the purposes of standardizing the identification of individuals and family relationships. --cos1776 20:15, 28 May 2017 (UTC)
As I said I do this as a compromise already, more or less in the community interest. If, like you, I adjusted the page to fit my way of doing things, the wikipedia inclusion would be gone, leaving at best a more-information link.
Sources were provided to support information on the page. That is currently done better by other sources on the page. Transcluding wikipedia was a process developed to provide narrative information, with little effort, to make the page look a little more mature. Obviously it is very limited in most cases, but suitable for seeding a page with quick information. Further, for well-known figures (say George Washington) it would be daunting to try and pretend one has the knowledge to write a credible biography. In other words, the only reason to reference wikipedia is exactly to provide a narrative. If one removes the narrative, there is no need to reference wikipedia any more: it has no useful function as a source, and the presence of a wikpedia page is indicated by the wikidata tag, or could be easily done with the more info template.
Regarding searching, your "compromise" negates that, but if you do keyword searching across all namespaces (i.e., the basic WeRelate search box in the upper right corner) it should search Wikipedia templates and find the text there. The cost of statically fixing the wikipedia text in a source, of course, is to lose the periodic updates since wikipedia text, like WeRelate, is not static. The updates are not run often enough - in my mind another reason why a convention based on using the more info template would make more sense. --Jrich 21:20, 28 May 2017 (UTC)
Allow me to remind you that you are the one who started this by doing exactly that - adjusting a page to fit your way of doing things. Before the transclusion discussion came about, you removed a perfectly legitimate (and searchable, btw) citation and replaced it with citations of your own. I restored it (leaving your citations alone). You removed my citation again. That is a wiki etiquette no-no and is bound to cause friction. Had you simply added your citations without removing mine, there would be no problem here.
You say, "Sources were provided ...", yet, I didn't remove any sources, so I don't know what you mean by that.
I am fully aware of the history behind the decision to use WP text, and I agree that it is occasionally appropriate here for well-known figures. I disagree, however, that a WP link in citation has no value when the narrative is not being used. It can be compared to any other citation to a secondary source. The value depends on the quality of the source (or specific WP page) itself and whether the link can provide research leads. In fact, you yourself have argued in the past for the retention of old links and identification numbers from another website (the name escapes me), because the trees were usually well-sourced there, even when there was no narrative from that website actually posted on the page.
I don't object to the use of the more info template in certain cases either. It is silly for us to continue to go back and forth on this, since neither one of us is particularly interested in this individual page. Hopefully we do share a common goal, however, in leaving a page in place that provides accurate information and helpful links for future readers who may be very interested and willing to flesh it out. I believe that the "compromise" that exists now accomplishes that, so can we agree to leave this be now? --cos1776 00:54, 29 May 2017 (UTC)
I started the discussion, so I suspect if there is a wiki-ettiquette non-no it is on your side. But that is not the issue here. There are 23548 person pages that transclude wikipedia. How many are there that copy the static text? I bet less than 23? I bet almost all done by you and only you. The same lack of requirement you throw at me applies to your approach but the numbers (if there was a way to count the number with static text) would undoubtedly not be in your favor. Like gender in the title field, and removing unknown from the name fields, you are inventing new ways to do things and then getting mad, when, surprise, people don't honor them because they don't understand why, don't agree with the changes, and they're not like other pages. --Jrich 01:44, 29 May 2017 (UTC)
Please allow me to interject here - and forgive me for not completely following the thread above - there are quite a lot of things we could do with MediaWiki (Wikidata and the various language versions of Wikipedia). Since I'm in the process of establishing the Wikidata ids via template on every Person page that's associated with Wikipedia - we're going to be in a position to easily and systematically scan what's done for all of those pages, how often, etc. If someone wants to lobby for standard treatment then - we can do it on an informed basis. Until we have some objective information on what's presently done - as well as things that others want to try to accomplish - I don't think there's any point in getting wound up about this. --jrm03063 14:37, 30 May 2017 (UTC)

Wanted pages [23 June 2017]

We have been discussing the "Wanted Pages" lately, but I can't remember where the thread was put. There are some entries on the list that make me curious, but I hesitate to inspect them further. If I can't fix them, how do they get back on the Wanted Pages list? One is #24: "Source:Westmoreland County e-services ‎(167 links)". Just where is this Westmoreland County? I know of two Westmorland Counties (without an "e")--one in England and one in New Brunswick, Canada, but the county name may have been used--with an "e"--in the States as well.

Your comments? --Goldenoldie 15:11, 9 June 2017 (UTC)

Likely Westmoreland, Pennsylvania, United States. Oops. Westmoreland, Virginia, United States, also. Neal--SkippyG 15:38, 9 June 2017 (UTC)
Do you mean the thread on WeRelate talk:Place patrol? I have found that these types of entry errors are usually made consistently by one or two users, so I will usually spend a little time browsing their tree(s) to get a general idea of the location of the families. Then I try to find some sources to corroborate their dates/places, and then go from there. I agree with you that it can be difficult to tell sometimes what the original poster meant. As a last resort, you could leave the Place field empty and move the text to the Description field with something like "Westmoreland County (state, country not specified)". But, I would be willing to bet that some of the attached pages can yield good clues. Hope that helps and thank you for keeping at it! :) --cos1776 15:40, 9 June 2017 (UTC)

Thanks to both of you for the help with "Source:Westmoreland County e-services". I just had a look at Wanted Pages again and noted all the crossed-through items. Congratulations on hard work. I did notice #82: "At sea." Several years ago User:Pgeekstra (apologies if I didn't get that right) decided that "At sea" was a reasonable place to include on the database. I hope it stays that way. --Goldenoldie 18:23, 10 June 2017 (UTC)

"At Sea" is still legal; the red entries just need the case corrected. I just did about a dozen. And then I discovered a null edit suffices, just "edit" and "save". --pkeegstra 19:07, 10 June 2017 (UTC)
The "Edit" and "Save" approach can be very useful. I often go through the redirects on a placename's "What links here" list and bring in a whole lot more links to People and Families that way. --Goldenoldie 05:30, 11 June 2017 (UTC)

FYI, Someone in 2014 added Place: "Mediterranean Sea" as a dependent of "At Sea". The map cursor is planted in a large blue background.--SkippyG 20:50, 10 June 2017 (UTC)

In my personal opinion, "Mediterranean Sea" (or "At Sea") should be considered valid Placenames. They denote locations that are definable (in a generalized sense, such as a state or country) and are used to connote possible locations of key life events (such as birth, baptism, marriage, death or burial at sea during a voyage) that many not be known by another more specific location. --BobC 19:06, 12 June 2017 (UTC)

I've noticed that among the top dozen Wanted Pages now are multiple MySources that were Speedy Deleted by one of the system administrators, but are still referenced in the linked person pages as source citations for the fact events entered. For the multiple person pages I checked, those linked person pages are still active, but because the MySource was deleted, the source citation now shows in red as containing no information because of the deletion action. So now the red-linked MySource becomes a Wanted Page.

So this brings up some questions in my mind:

  1. Were the referenced and imported GEDCOM files (identified as MySources) deleted because the data file itself was deleted (or removed) at the importer's request? Or is this a maintenance and clean-up action conducted independently by the system administrator?
  2. Relating to the SysAdmin action, is having only one user watching a MySource considered adequate and justifiable reason to Speedy Delete the source?
  3. Once deleted (if the action is considered valid), should it then show up as a Wanted Page?

Please opine or advise. --BobC 17:09, 15 June 2017 (UTC)

I think you have to look at each case individually to find the answers to why a MySource page was deleted and whether or not it was the appropriate choice. Since most of these date back to the beginning, I would venture a guess that either the Admins didn't understand the process or there might have been a decision made way back when to use the Wanted pages list to flag pages in need of further editing to remove the undesired citation links. Nowadays, I examine all Sources coming in and exclude those that only refer to personal trees or files, so these types of MySource pages and links are not generated. However, I can not speak for all of the reviewers, so some might still be coming in. --cos1776 19:49, 15 June 2017 (UTC)
I don't fault the sysadmins or volunteers from doing what they needed to do to perform maintenance and clean-up. I think it is a system fault that allows deletion of information that connects to other data or pages. The system then moves the deleted link to the "Wanted Pages" list because it connects to other pages without having its own content. --BobC 18:05, 22 June 2017 (UTC)
Interesting thought! I could imagine either something like a pop up that warns you if the page you are about to delete still has links to it or the ability to remove all links at once from each affected page. The latter would solve the issue, and I think it is what some admins think is happening when they delete a MySource. Either that or, as I have wondered, they may have been told to delete MySources in this way, specifically so that they would appear on the Wanted pages list. I don't know the answer, so I asked an admin who has been around for a while. I am awaiting a response. --cos1776 23:07, 22 June 2017 (UTC)
Re: #2 - I would say that the decision to delete any page should be based on the circumstances and not on the number of watchers. I have deleted some pages with multiple watchers if it came in via GEDCOM a long time ago, there were no sources, the watchers are inactive, and/or it is too far back, etc. --cos1776 19:49, 15 June 2017 (UTC)
Understand. I agree that the circumstances should take priority over the number "watchers," but the level of activity of users watching these pages should be considered also. Relating specifically to GEDCOMS, the MySource Page Portal states: "When you upload a GEDCOM, all of your sources with title fields are listed as MySources, whether or not they meet the above criteria. You have the option when you review your GEDCOM to link your sources to the community Sources and to edit your MySource pages." So that tells me that GEDCOMs are and should be considered valid MySources. --BobC 18:05, 22 June 2017 (UTC)
I think you may be reading too much into that quoted sentence which likely dates to before the auto-matching program was in place. I think it is simply explaining how the program used to work. Before being updated, all matching had to be done by hand. This can be a tedious task, so many people took the easy way out and simply left all of their sources as MySources. This is why so many older trees only cite MySources. It is also true that in the beginning, the admins doing the reviewing were hesitant to exclude any sources, regardless of the quality. That is why so many older trees cite things like personal GEDCOM files, Ancestry Family Trees, IGI, etc. Nowadays, the review program will do its best to auto-match the incoming sources to our existing source database first with relatively good success. Whatever it can't match gets left to the user (preferred) or to the reviewer (usually) to decide if it can be matched, if it should remain as a MySource, or if it should be excluded from entry. Citations to personal GEDCOM files are usually denied now, so there is no need to remove them page-by-page later. --cos1776 23:07, 22 June 2017 (UTC)
Re: #3 - The best way to stop the creation of undesired MySource pages or citation links to them is to catch them before they are imported. If they make it in, there is currently no other way to resolve them, except to manually edit each page as we do now. Once all links are resolved, the MySource page will automatically disappear from the "Wanted pages" list, because there are no longer any other pages trying to link to it. I hope this makes sense? --cos1776 19:49, 15 June 2017 (UTC)
Had to read this one a few times to digest and attempt to comprehend it. Not sure I do in full, but thanks for your response. --BobC 18:05, 22 June 2017 (UTC)

Okay, I had to think about it awhile, but I came up with a way to remove the deleted MySource page links from the Wanted Pages listing. I redirected those old MySource pages to a new pages entitled MySource:Inactive or Deleted Data. Hope that helps clean up the listing without affecting the ability to restore those individual pages (if ever necessary or desired) or to further manipulate the person pages for which the deleted files were cross-referenced. --BobC 17:40, 22 June 2017 (UTC)

I'm not sure this is the best approach. Unless there is a second step planned to fix the links, you are just moving the problem to a different page that most admins won't know about. Clearing page titles off the Wanted pages list is not the primary goal. The primary goal is to ensure that data is entered into the correct data field and in an acceptable format. If we resolve the bad data entries, the Wanted pages list clears itself.
Creating (or undeleting) and then redirecting page titles does not solve the problem of bad data entries on each linked page. This is especially true when redirecting Place page titles, because it lessens the efficiency of our search engine. (ex. click "Browse Smith in Neshoba" (left menu) for Person:Abigail Smith (55) - her page does not get returned because the search engine is looking for the redirect and not for the original entry that is still in her Place field).
For MySources, the concern is a little different. If it is not a valid source, then I don't think we should restore the link to a page that says that it may not be a valid source. That seems like an unnecessary middle step. Why is that better than removing the undesired citations from the linked pages? I get that it is easier, but it doesn't really solve the problem. --cos1776 23:07, 22 June 2017 (UTC)
I understand what you're saying, and while it may not have been the literally correct approach or ultimately ideal solution, at this point it may be better and simply more feasible than tackling that "second step" you mention which would be to evaluate individually and edit all 5,108 links related to these 17 deleted pages that really were of no concern to anyone besides the handful of us who monitor some of these more unknown special pages and perform maintenance on some of the problems areas identified in those WeRelate pages since the pages they point to seem to have been abandoned by the folks who submitted them and of no concern to anyone else.
While the process I used may have appeared to do so in an indirect way, the function I performed did not really restore the pages, only redirected the deleted source pages to one page reflecting the deletion action previously performed (which may or may not have been appropriate and functional since the page then appeared in the Wanted Pages listing, and actually may have been a valid MySource page at the time created as previously stated) and explain the systemic processing and linking problem inherent in the system. Only by removing the 5108 undesired source citations from all of the linked person pages would have truly allowed complete deletion of the MySource pages. Are any of us prepared to do that?
Appreciate your feedback. Thanks again. --BobC 03:48, 23 June 2017 (UTC)
I know it is tedious work, but there are a handful of dedicated users who are actively pecking away at this all the time (even tracking the progress). Absent a programming improvement to make this process easier, we have to work with the current hand we are dealt. Since folks usually go to the Wanted pages list to see what needs to be done, let's see if we can come up with a way to "redirect" them now to the pages you have created, MySource:Inactive or Deleted Data and Place:Inappropriate placename usage (any others?), so they don't miss the ones that have been removed from the list.
For the Place name redirects, I would encourage you to either put them back onto the list (remove redirect and delete the page) or print out/screenshot the current list now, before the titles disappear this weekend, so that you/we can know which ones still need to be addressed. I made this same mistake initially with redirecting some Place names, so I have my own little list that I am slowly working to resolve - mostly Norwegian and German places.
I try to remain optimistic that we can eventually have a better method to fix the old bad links and prevent new ones from being entered. I have also put in a suggestion for an update to the left menu Browse search, so that we will be able to simply redirect the bad Place names. Please consider voting for this suggestion if you agree. Thanks, --cos1776 11:38, 23 June 2017 (UTC)

Parents? [13 June 2017]

What is the source of this William being the son of Daniel Mays? According to Joseph Barron Chandler Jr, “The Reverend William Mease: Forgotten Hero of Early Virginia,” Tidewater Virginia Families, vol 10, this William was probably Daniel's brother.

Would be interested in further discussion of William and Mary Mattox. Much conflicting information online. --KayS 02:25, 13 June 2017 (UTC)

Can you provide a link for ease of locating the page you are referring to above? Thanks. --BobC 05:01, 13 June 2017 (UTC)

probably Family:William Mayes and Mary Mattox (2) --Jrich 13:43, 13 June 2017 (UTC)

KayS - please see Person talk:William Mayes (36) for response. Thanks, --cos1776 14:12, 13 June 2017 (UTC)

My Source Pages [22 June 2017]

Hello, I am curious where this discussion about Wanted pages has taken place. --Susan Irish 04:04, 17 June 2017 (UTC)

Try Page Portal. --Goldenoldie 08:16, 17 June 2017 (UTC)
Good morning! Yes, there is some here on my talk page and some on the WeRelate talk:Place patrol. Thanks, --cos1776 11:51, 17 June 2017 (UTC)
Please review my note above relating to the MySource links. --BobC 18:10, 22 June 2017 (UTC)
Thanks, BobC. I have inserted comments above. --cos1776 23:07, 22 June 2017 (UTC)

linking uncertain family members [26 June 2017]

Cos, I see that you are watching the family page of Daniel Jackson and Abigail Sanford. I believe I've found more children for them but am a bit unsure if I should add them as the source has only Daniel's name. We don't know when Abigail died so assuming these are her children is uncertain. Would you recommend adding them or even mentioning the possibility? Or do you know of a different place to try to find more info? My source is Connecticut Town Birth Records, pre-1870 (Barbour Collection), Newtown Vital Records, pg 111 and it says:
Jackson, Artemese, d. [Daniel], b Mar 12, 1771
Jackson, Asel, s. [Daniel], b Apr 22, 1774
Mary, d. [Daniel], b May 8, 1772; d. June 26, 1773
I have uploaded husband and children for Artemese/Artimecia and sure would like to link her to Daniel and Abigail. But should I?? Here is her person page: Person:Artimecia Jackson (1). If no response, I think I'll link them and let someone challenge it if they have better inf. --janiejac 22:45, 25 June 2017 (UTC)

Please excuse my intrusion... If you want to indicate a possibility that you are not yet comfortable indicating as a normal spouse, child, etc., you might consider the speculative relationship templates - see this help page. -jrm
Hi janiejac - I think you have handled it appropriately on the Family page. I would have probably done the same thing in this case, pending additional information on the mother. --cos1776 16:48, 26 June 2017 (UTC)

Samuel Waggoner (9) Update [30 June 2017]

Hi.. A quick update re: Samuel. I've linked Samuel's wife and children to the new Samuel Waggoner (10), though still connected to Samuel Waggoner (9).

I've gained a clue by surveying his wife's & children's pages (considerably shorter). Each Property and Census reference is tied to a Note(s), which in turn links to a WR Place Page. This last link in my view is unnecessary, could be placed in the Text section of the Source along with entire Note (property description & birthplace/residence backup).

Just to make this a little more difficult, not ALL the Notes are tied to a specific Source, making matching the Property description to the right Source questionable.

Then there are My Source references to Court (Chancery, etc) Records, deed transfers & court cases (mostly Seneca Co., Ohio) which are not in the WR sources.

I also tend to think that the Alt:births could be ignored. I'll try to reenter the above on the new page, but I have a "gut feeling" that the old page will need to be Admin deleted. Neal--SkippyG 18:10, 30 June 2017 (UTC)

Thank you for taking the initiative to figure this one out. It is an interesting case. I wonder which original program was used to generate the GEDCOMs? --cos1776 18:39, 30 June 2017 (UTC)

Re: Auto Place matching suggestion [8 July 2017]


Your suggestion is going to make problems with places outside the US. In the UK in 1974 the top level of municipality within each county was changed to a "district". Because many new districts had been given the names of the geographically smaller principal town within, I had to think up some way of differentiating the new places from the old ones with the new names. After much consideration (use of brackets, etc), I decided that the new districts should be identified by keeping the word "District" in their title. Most of the 40 counties in England have now had their Districts labelled. It will be very difficult to distinguish the modern places from the old ones if the word District is dropped.

I've come across a number of people whose American placenames have required this kind of edit, and I simply move the district description to the box on the right.

Regards --Goldenoldie 19:24, 7 July 2017 (UTC)

Thank you for pointing that out. I added your comment above to that suggestion page and responded there as well. --cos1776 20:39, 7 July 2017 (UTC)

Phew! That's a relief!

Regards, Pat --Goldenoldie 06:31, 8 July 2017 (UTC)

Tadcaster [20 July 2017]

Tadcaster, Ainsty, is Tadcaster, West Riding of Yorkshire, England.

The Ainsty is an area partly surrounding the City of York, with more of it to the southwest than to any other compass point. Wikipedia on Ainsty is very useful. The article doesn't mention Tadcaster, only Tadcaster East, because the Ainsty border was at the River Wharfe which cuts Tadcaster in two.

I notice I never touched Tadcaster when I did Yorkshire. I tended to work on smaller places within rural districts and a large town (urban district or larger) could be omitted if the list of parishes within the rural district got excessively long (and I got bored). I must get around to telling people just how far Tadcaster is from York. (That is why I don't use the Wikipedia copying template.)

Rural districts should never be used in WR for a birth, marriage or death. But they are useful to group a number of small places which are close together--marrying distance, perhaps. Registration Districts are groups of places that include both large communities and small and are usually named after the large community they cover. If the source is the index to b-m-d registrations (online FreeBMD), the only information obtainable is the name of the Registration District, not the exact place within it.

The English like repeating names for places. I have developed a warning notice which I put at the tops of a pages of similar or identically named places, but I didn't use it at the start--and Yorkshire was done in 2013-14 and never completed despite it being the one county in England I can trace ancestors to.

Hope this sorts out Tadcaster for you. I must get back to Québec where I only seem to manage one tiny township or canton per day at the moment, but I am gradually accruing more sources for the many questions I'm asking.

/cheers, Pat --Goldenoldie 06:37, 20 July 2017 (UTC)

Thank you for the background on Tadcaster. --cos1776 14:38, 20 July 2017 (UTC)

Tadcaster practical [20 July 2017]


I just looked through the list of Tadcaster "who links here" and since I have only a few minutes left in this computer session decided to tackle the William Stead-O'Neill family at the bottom of the list. Cities with a number of parishes are often broken down into these parishes in the 19th century. But I never went through that procedure for York (too early in my learning-to-set-up-places). If I had, I would have marked those birthplaces as York St. Dennis, Yorkshire, England.

York, the city, went through times of being in the West Riding, the North Riding and the East Riding. Therefore, it is just York, Yorkshire, England.

/cheers, Pat--Goldenoldie 06:57, 20 July 2017 (UTC)

Thank you again. All links to "Tadcaster, Ainsty" have been corrected to "Tadcaster, West Riding of Yorkshire" which appears to be the original poster's intended place in the context of our place naming system. Many of those pages contain no sources, so hopefully if additional specification is needed for the connected facts, it will be provided when sources are added. --cos1776 14:38, 20 July 2017 (UTC)

Quebec [2 August 2017]

You may know that I am working on Quebec at the moment. It's a very slow job, and I am currently tearing my hair out over Montreal (Montréal). Wikipedia has very kindly erased all history of the suburbs prior to 2002 and French sources are also not very helpful for following the 1900 rule. If, in the next few weeks, Saint-Baptiste is altered, don't be surprised.

Remember, we are supposed to work in French which means hyphens between words, Saint and Sainte spelled out in full, and all appropriate accents. The number of red-linked places I have created (and corrected) by forgetting these is innumerable.

Here's a problem which shows up in Montreal and in other places too. The name of the county changed in 2002 and the smaller surrounding places became "arrondissements" of the big city. Before that they were towns and cities in the Île-de-Montréal. But the word "arrondissement" shows up in the list of contained places on the Île-de-Montréal and "inhabited place" within Montreal TE (=territory equivalent to a regional county municipality)--the formal name of the city now. I didn't want to put it forward as one of the suggestions for a vote, but it needs a solution. New York City probably adopted boroughs in the 19th century, but other places have done so a lot more recently.

Regards, Pat --Goldenoldie 12:41, 2 August 2017 (UTC)

I certainly do not mean to step on your toes! :) I am only touching these places in Canada when I encounter them on the Wanted pages list. Then I do my best to try to figure out how to title them in keeping with the 1900s rule. I am certainly no expert on Canada, so please feel free to point out any errors that I might make.
Regarding Place:Saint-Jean-Baptiste, L'Île-d'Orléans, Québec, Canada, I do think that I made a mistake there. It should have been titled "Saint-Jean-Baptiste, Montmorency No. 2, Québec, Canada", since it was located in the historical county of "Montmorency No.2" in 1900. However, in looking over the history of some of those pages, I noticed that you had recently redirected the historical county Place:Montmorency No 2, Québec, Canada to the modern regional county municipality (RCM) Place:L'Île-d'Orléans, Québec, Canada which did not exist until 1982-ish. Shouldn't all of those places be titled with their 1900 historical county name with the modern RCM entered in the "Also located in" field with applicable dates? It would seem that Québec can be divided by following List of former counties of Quebec which mostly existed from the 1850s to the 1980s. That would place the ancestors properly and point researchers the applicable genealogical records they seek. I don't know why you would have to get too deeply involved in the jurisdictional changes that occurred after 1980 unless you just wanted to. There are other sites that are experts in that type of geographic and political detail.
While we are discussing this, I do have a concern that some of our Place divisions are becoming too confusing for the average user to select from the dropdown menu.
I added the brief description which is not shown for the users on the dropdown menu. They would have to visit each Place page individually to see a description. You might recall that the dropdown menu used to display "Type" under each name as opposed to the page title that is displayed now. I found the description/type to be more helpful - did you? Perhaps that could be something that we ask for again to help us distinguish between places with similar names as our database continues to grow.
What do you think about this and about using the historic counties for the titles of places in Québec? --cos1776 14:44, 2 August 2017 (UTC)

Congratulations on your success in following my unfinished work.

First. Place:Saint-Jean-Baptiste, L'Île-d'Orléans, Québec, Canada. I recall removing Montmorency 2 from the list last week, it had long been on my mental to-do list. Actually I thought the name change happened before 1900. Directing it to the RCM sounds like an oopsie on my part, so it's back on that to-do list again.

I wish I could keep to the historic counties in Quebec, but there are a number of reasons why this is impossible, one being that online sources of historic information (not just Wikipedia) have not just put them on the back burner, but sent pre-1982 history out with the trash. I haven't even got the bounding historic counties sorted out yet. In Ontario and the UK the revision date was the 1970s and that's getting on for 50 years ago. There have been a lot of b-m-d's since then and there's going to be a whole lot more. I spent hours yesterday and today just trying to determine what historic county Montreal was in in 2000. Now I know it was in Île-de-Montréal.

The St. Olave situation. I can only vaguely remember the makeup of the old drop-down box. I know that it was at that change that Dallan wrote to me personally to ask if the new organization looked good. I thought so at the time, but since then I've found some wierd wordings in the second line and duplicated suggestions following each other where I can't see the difference. I also find places where the left hand side of the pipe has been filled in automatically--with a place in Australia instead of one in England!

As I said to you when we were discussing Tadcaster (above), I would like to develop a scheme of changing the names of early English parishes in large towns so that the town was always mentioned first: e.g. London St. Olave Old Jewry and London St. Olave Silver Street. I never got that far with London last year--it was just too difficult to do when non-genealogical problems began to get in the way. I hope that we will see 500 lines by default on "what links here" soon along with some of the other suggested improvements.

(Which reminds me. There is something wrong with Montreal's "what links here" list. It stops in the middle of the "M"s under Families. Could be a break at 1000, but I'm not sure. I don't like the way the sources for Quebec places have been handled. I don't think there is need for so many.)

I don't think I have answered your questions too well, but there are some suggestions as well as problems above.

Regards, Pat --Goldenoldie 20:01, 2 August 2017 (UTC)

Montréal, Île-de-Montréal, Québec, Canada [12 August 2017]


I see you are busy making some changes. Actually I was using Montréal, Québec, Canada when referring to modern day Greater Montreal--in other words, speaking in general geographical terms instead of going back in time to 1900.

Gatineau TE should have an "UNDER CONSTRUCTION" sign on it. The history section is yet to be condensed and the map should fit better once that is done. I am having trouble with this part of Québec. None of my sources are willing to tell me the name of the county covering the area in 1900 and the length of the coverage. At the moment all the WR entries in the area are in Wright County, but apparently that was just the electoral district. The correct answer appears to be Hull, so I will change them all again in the morning. I had just decided to pack things in when I saw the automatic emails.

Nouvelle-France needs to be redirected to Québec, Canada, but as it stands it is a country and cannot be redirected.


--Goldenoldie 21:34, 10 August 2017 (UTC)

In looking over the hierarchy of all of the pages associated with the current configuration of Montréal, including all of the redirects that were done, I am seeing some things that don't look quite correct and that will result in problems with searching and browsing and linking people and sources correctly in the future. It is quite the tangled web right now. I think that one of our other users said it best (I don't remember who it was exactly) in regards to Place pages. They said to think of a single Place page as a point on the globe. The point on the globe is unique (i.e. there should only be one page per point on the globe), but that point may have had a different name or been a part of a different jurisdiction over the years. The page title only expresses that name and jurisdiction around the year 1900 (just because we have chosen that date). So the "Alt name" field is for any other names that that point has had over the years and the "Also located in" field is for any other jurisdictions that that point has belonged to over the years. (As a side note, I do think that WR is missing a big piece of this plan, namely the ability to associate the "Type" of place with different dates and date-appropriate jurisdiction names and not only those in 1900. The way it is now, you can not specify Type by date or jurisdiction and you can not enter Alt names in the "Also located in" field, so you end up with incorrect Type tags and jurisdictions in some Contained Places sidebars.)
Please bear with me as I walk myself through the background... If we look over the titling (hierarchy) plan devised for places in Québec at Place talk:Québec, Canada, we see that the majority of titles should have 4 or fewer parts which are the 1900 values of
  1. town or parish or township or municipality - all at the same level in 1900
  2. historical county
  3. Québec
  4. Canada
So, following this logic, a page such as Place:Ville-Marie, Montréal TE, Québec, Canada should not exist, as it does now, separately from Place:Montréal, Île-de-Montréal, Québec, Canada, because they are essentially the same spot on the globe. The correct page is Place:Montréal, Île-de-Montréal, Québec, Canada which should also include "Ville-Marie" in the "Alt name" field and "Québec, Canada" in the "Also located in field" with the dates "2002|present" to express what occurred after 2002. And this is where WR could be improved to allow you to enter "Type=Territory equivalent" for those dates as well (but we don't have that yet).
If done this way, all of the information about what happened to the place known as Villa-Marie or Montréal through the years would be on the page for Montréal. Then, when folks enter "Villa-Marie" in the Place field, the dropdown will show them "Villa-Marie, Île-de-Montréal, Québec, Canada / Montréal, Île-de-Montréal, Québec, Canada" as one of the selections -OR- if they were to enter "Montréal, Québec, Canada" they would be shown "Montréal, Québec, Canada / Montréal, Île-de-Montréal, Québec, Canada" and the events would be linked to the appropriate page that represents the same spot on the globe and is linked to the relevant Sources for that spot on the globe. If an event occurred in the post-2002 borough named "Ville-Marie" in the city of Montréal, I would argue that the jurisdiction would then be too small to have its own page, so the name "Villa-Marie" would be more appropriately entered in either the Description field or behind a pipe in the Place field that directly links to Place:Montréal, Île-de-Montréal, Québec, Canada.
You said above that you were using the title "Montréal, Québec, Canada" to represent "Greater Montréal". I'm not sure I follow your thinking on that. Why would you create a separate page when events in Montréal can and should be linked to Place:Montréal, Île-de-Montréal, Québec, Canada as outlined above?
I realize that you have done a lot of work on these Canadian pages and the information on the pages looks great, so I don't want you to think that I don't appreciate all of your efforts. I certainly do. I just think that some of the hierarchy and linking is not being handled in the best way, and I don't want you to get too far into it and then have to undo too much. This problem of multiple redirects is lessening the effectiveness of our Search engine when all of the associated links for the redirected page are not being corrected as well. Perhaps we could work out a system by which you kept a list of the pages you wish to redirect and we could make sure that all of the links get fixed for each one. What do you think? In the meantime, I will continue untangling the links to Montréal in between working on the Request list.
Best wishes, --cos1776 20:14, 11 August 2017 (UTC)

You have used Ville Marie as your example, and on Ville Marie I had considered redirecting to "Montréal, Île-de-Montréal, Québec, Canada" with a short paragraph about Ville Marie in the text. This also goes for the other boroughs which have been part of "Montréal, Île-de-Montréal, Québec, Canada" for the past hundred years or so. But what about the other municipalities, such as Westmount and those on the other end of the island which were forced into Montreal for the period 2002-2006 and are now independent again? At the other end of the time scale, we have no automatic redirect between Quebec and Nouvelle France (Nouvelle France was not a part of Canada--Canada was a part of Nouvelle France) and we have users who have traced their numerous French-Canadian ancestors back to beyong 1763 (without providing us with sources, of course).

I am far from being an expert on Montreal--I have learned a lot more in the past three weeks than I ever knew before. But it has become confusing to the point that I have moved away from it for a few days--with the intention of coming back to complete some of the still missing outside municipalities shortly. I hope that I will be able to make a better job of it when I return. There is life outside my office door and there is no lock on that door. Thoughts can disappear into thin air when I am interrupted.

Your point made in italics was well put. I agree it is a frustration.

Regards, --Goldenoldie 07:46, 12 August 2017 (UTC)

I think the best simple way to incorporate Nouvelle-France into the 1900 place hierarcy would be to "also located in" all the historical counties into one of the French colonial districts Québec, Trois-Rivières, or Montréal. Simpler but less precise would be to redirect Canada, Nouvelle-France to Québec, Canada. The WR system was not specced for representing the entire historical evolution of regions, so we should not be shocked about its limitations. I have a suggestion on file to look at the approach used by the personal genealogy database gramps, which is specced to capture the entire historical evolution of regions. But that would be at least as substantial a change as the Mediawiki upgrade. --pkeegstra 13:19, 12 August 2017 (UTC)

Recent changes to Vessige Parish in Sweden [21 August 2017]

Hello!! I have been noticing some changes requested by you in a family we are related through I believe. ALMQUIST is the surname of my maternal grandfather. I added my gedcom here long ago and have been working in Ancestry more recently. You are the first to present a change and it seems to be in the specific location in Halland Sweden (Vessige). I have Household records from that shows Vessige as a Parish and I used it from that record. May I ask why you are asking to drop this information?

Claudia Thibadeau--LutheranChickadee 17:03, 20 August 2017 (UTC)

Hi Claudia - I moved your question down here to give it some space as a new topic. In regards to Vessige, I do a lot of clean up work to fix broken Place links, so I am guessing that you were notified of one of these changes. If you can give me a link to one of the pages where this particular change was made, I can better answer your question. It may have to do with the standard way in which we format our links or it could be a mistake which I am happy to fix, but I'm not sure until I take a look at your specific case. Thanks, --cos1776 17:33, 20 August 2017 (UTC)

Oh I thought you might be related. Lol

Here is one of them:

--LutheranChickadee 00:51, 21 August 2017 (UTC)

Ok. Thanks for the background info. One of the goals of this site is to link people to the specific places in which the events of their lives occurred, so we ask that users enter place names in a standard format. If you look at the history of Person:Emanuel Almquist (1)'s page as it relates to his entries for Vessige Parish, you can see that:
  1. 12 Aug 2009 - page begins ; Place entry = "Vessige, Årstad, Falkenbergs, Halland, Sweden" which is a title that doesn't exist in our database and is therefore shown in red. It doesn't exist because it doesn't follow our standard format for place titles in Sweden, which is usually "town/parish, county, Sweden". This format was established when this site began and followed the formatting used at FamilySearch [1]. The page title we use for Vessige Parish is Place:Vessige, Halland, Sweden.
  2. 10 May 2016 - User Rmg updates the Place entry by moving the text "Vessige, Årstad, Falkenbergs" to the Description field and leaving behind a direct link to Place:Halland, Sweden in the Place field. Side note: I do not know why she chose to link to the county instead of the parish, since a page for the parish was in existence at that time.
  3. 18 Aug 2017 - I update the Place entry from "Halland, Sweden" to "Vessige, Halland, Sweden" to link directly to the parish instead of the county in keeping with the intention of your original entry. Please note: there were some other changes made in other fields for other reasons, but for now, I'll stick to the ones for Vessige.
I would completely agree that the Place page for the parish of Vessige is still woefully underdeveloped. Any updates to that page would be most welcome. I hope that this explanation of the changes made is helpful. I am happy to answer any further questions that you might have, and I hope that you will continue to make updates to the research you originally posted here in 2009. Best wishes, --cos1776 11:50, 21 August 2017 (UTC)

Do I have to approve this change of dropping the Parish? At the time of the document this information was taken from, this was the way the specified rural areas. I feel this information is important to other researchers!--LutheranChickadee 16:40, 21 August 2017 (UTC)

What do you mean when you say the parish was dropped? I am not following you. The page/link for the parish was created in 2007 and has remained the same as Place:Vessige, Halland, Sweden. It has not changed or been dropped. --cos1776 17:02, 21 August 2017 (UTC)

Sorry I did not mean the Vessige Parish page. The changes that are showing in my emails from werelate are to drop the word Vessige (which I have in the space where a town or city would be). If I don't approve this change can my information stay the same?--LutheranChickadee 18:43, 21 August 2017 (UTC)

Please forgive me, but I am still not completely understanding what it is that you are objecting to. I didn't remove the parish from the Place field, but rather restored it, so that it links properly to our database. Why don't we do this... I will sign on as a "Watcher" of Person:Emanuel Almquist (1) and then you can edit his page to reflect the change as you'd like to see it. Then we can figure out where to go from there. Please go ahead and make the edit. I will respond on his Talk page. Thanks, --cos1776 19:23, 21 August 2017 (UTC)

Sorry [21 August 2017]

I am so sorry I was looking at the update as the old record. I will approve these.--LutheranChickadee 20:34, 21 August 2017 (UTC)

No worries. :) Please just let me know if you have any other questions. Take care, --cos1776 20:55, 21 August 2017 (UTC)

still having trouble with GEDCOM review [1 October 2017]

Hi Cos, Dallan said to let you know if there was still a problem with the GEDCOM review. I've tried to review a small one this evening but the system keeps freezing and won't let me change tabs. It does let me use the browser back button, but eventually it freezes and I had to just X out of We Relate. Am I the only one trying to upload? Yes, I know there is a 2.5 warning, but it was all one family that I thought I could fix after the upload. Since the system let me link about one-third of the places, I assume it wasn't that 2.5 warning/alert that caused the problem. --janiejac 01:31, 30 September 2017 (UTC)

Hi Janie - I'm sorry you are having trouble again. I'm afraid this is going to be our new reality until we can get the Flash-based programs replaced (a hugh undertaking, btw). I'll take a look and report back. --cos1776 16:05, 30 September 2017 (UTC)
Ok - it should have gone through now. Please let me know if you don't see the acceptance message on your Talk page soon. --cos1776 17:24, 30 September 2017 (UTC)
Oh my! Now what to do? Yes, I rec'd the msg that it went through. But I sure wasn't finished reviewing it! I had linked only about 1/3 of the places and no sources or matched any families. It had just froze up on me not even letting me go out of the review and back in. So what to do? I did put it in as a separate tree; 173 people. If I leave it, it may look a mess because of not being properly linked to places and sources or even families. Shall I remove it? Or can you remove it? Then I think I should take a break from WeRelate for a while. I hope you can somehow let everyone know when things are up and running well again. (Really, I'd like to see some folks get together, buy the site from Dallan and set it up to be self-supporting even if it means annual or monthly fees. I don't like WikiTree but they are eating our dinner!)
No worries. I finished the Place and Source matching when I was checking it over. I think there were matches for all but a few. There were no family matches suggested, so I went ahead and imported it. I can understand wanting to take a break. We lost power for a few days and internet for almost a week during the last hurricane, and it really made me realize how much time I spend on this site. I should take more breaks myself. :) --cos1776 00:32, 1 October 2017 (UTC)

Ah wonderful! I checked just a few and they looked fine - I wondered how that could be! Even Adelia Hagans where I had a typo in her age was fixed! So thanks for all the fixin' and all the help!!

Becoming a Facebook page administrator [13 October 2017]

Hi Cos1776, In order to become an administrator of the Werelate Facebook page, the existing admin of that page needs to add me as an admin using the 'Assign a New Page Role' in the Settings of the Facebook page. They can use my Facebook user name 'Paul D. Grey' or my email address

Feel contact me via the above email address with any questions.

Kind regards, Paul Grey--GreyByName 08:10, 10 October 2017 (UTC)

Hello again. I am working on this. I wasn't involved in the group that started the FB page, so I don't know exactly who the admin is, but I have asked around and will put you in contact as soon as I find out. --cos1776 01:02, 11 October 2017 (UTC)
Ok - you should be good to go - the invitation's in the mail. I will update the Social networking page to reflect the current status. Thank you again for volunteering to do this, --cos1776 14:16, 13 October 2017 (UTC)

Thanks.--GreyByName 23:38, 13 October 2017 (UTC)

Parents of Andrew Jackson Atkins / Millard etc. [19 October 2017]

Long ago, I posted a GEDCOM file containing tentative information for Andrew Jackson Atkins (1883/4-1931). In that posting his parents were given as William (? M) Adkins, wife unknown...and William's parents as Jesse Adkins and Letha Rachel (maiden) Adkins. I have long since left behind, rarely checking back to see what's happening there. Today, I chose to visit and looked through information you posted there. Although I found some information seeming to be irrelevant (as you noted also...i.e.-1900 Census), as the age was way off and did not match the other census data provided, I did take note of the other census data you provided (1880, 1910 & 1920 census data, and the birth certificate of Oliver Balaam Atkins 1892).

On my own site, I presented Andrew Jackson Adkins/Atkins (nuclear family spelled it both ways...personal knowledge), with parents mentioned above. I have always had some difficulty with that William as Andrew's parents, but it was the closest I could find (and noted it as such). I would like to get clear on this particular relationship/lineage (my maternal grandfather's paternal line) if it is possible.

I posted the death certificate of Andrew Jackson Adkins/Atkins which gives the name of his father as Bud. The family (his children I knew when younger) said their grandfather was Bud Adkins (or Atkins, depending on who you talked to). I also posted the 1918 Draft Registration which bears Andrew's signature as Atkins. Among his children, some spell it one way and some another, getting their information from their respective fathers. However, some of those fathers spelled it one way during part of their life, and the other way during another part of their life...leaving it unclear which was correct. Even having Andrew's signature as Atkins does not preclude his also having used Adkins also at some point. This makes some sort of sense, as the original name is Adkins, meaning "kin of Adam", and mispronunciation and misspelling accounts for believing it is Atkins (although there may be other explanations).

• So starting with my original information, long before I did anything related to genealogy, my great grandfather was Bud Adkins.

• Many years later, one of Andrew's children said that their grandfather was Willard as best they could recall. Of course, that's a lot like Millard.

• Additionally, of the siblings they would recall (Balem, Emery, Milton and Martha), Balem was the only one they could give birth information it as Feb. 1892; which agrees with the birth information given for Oliver Balaam Atkins. Additionally, Andrew's children's family recollection said that Andrew's brother(s) came to the funeral and took the family Bible home with them to St. Albans; which also agrees with Oliver's information. This missing document made it difficult to know who exactly Andrew's parents and original family were.

• Oliver's birth certificate was signed by Floyd Smith. I notice that one of William's children is named Enos Floyd. As it happens, Andrew Jackson Adkins/Atkins' wife's stepfather is Floyd Smith, the first husband of Octavia Egnor, mother of Mary Frances Horton by William H. Horton, her second husband. This Floyd Smith would have been close to the William's family and may be related to Edna Gladys Smith; however, he died before 12 Oct 1882. Still, a close relative with the same name would make sense to be close to the family as well. Floyd Smith did have a nephew, Floyd Smith, son of Parker Smith, Floyd's brother.

• Lacking in any information is a brother named Emery; however, there is a Joseph E.

• Lacking in any information is a brother named Milton; however, Millard is similar and is shown in a possible 3rd marriage for William Millard.

• Present in my family recollections and in your provided information is a sister named Martha.

I'll need to do some digging, but appears you've already done the digging. Do you have other documents which would tend to prove our Andrew, married to Mary Frances Horton, is actually Andrew, son of William Millard Atkins?

Thanks, Doug Couch 01:07, 19 October 2017 (UTC)

Hi Doug. I have spent some time revisiting these pages this morning and refamiliarizing myself with the families and the records and fixing date and place formats to link the pages properly. I am also finding some inconsistencies and likely errors in the family groups that I'm sure we can straighten out. This site works really well for collaboration. I will spend some more time today (and maybe tomorrow if needed) making some adjustments, so you might see some back and forth notifications. Then, perhaps over the weekend you could review and add in any new insights and records you might have accumulated since your initial postings in 2008/09. Does that sound ok with you?--cos1776 13:55, 19 October 2017 (UTC)
Follow up: Pages have been adjusted, and I have left a note on Person talk:Andrew Adkins (2) with a theory about the identification of father "Bud Adkins". --cos1776 03:33, 20 October 2017 (UTC)

Abersychan, Torfaen [25 October 2017]

Place:Saint Thomas Churchyard, Abersychan, Torfaen, Wales redirected from Place:Abersychan, Monmouthshire, Wales

Hello It's partly right, Abersychan, Torfaen, Wales is correct as it a place name from Abersychan, Monmouthshire, Wales (county boundary changes)

Saint Thomas Churchyard is in Abersychan, Torfaen, Wales which is correct.

Colin--Colin Madge 12:50, 19 October 2017 (UTC)

It will make the adjustments over the next few days. Thank you for the response. --cos1776 10:51, 25 October 2017 (UTC)

Stults family [25 October 2017]

I see that you made a bunch of changes to the Stults' and I was curious are you related? Also just wanted to say thanks for all your edits. I specifically noticed you deleted Lewis Stults... and I too came to the conclusion he may not have existed or perhaps was a nephew or something. I was just wondering if you might have any information regarding the family of James and Fanny Stults--Sstults 03:42, 23 October 2017 (UTC)

I am not related. Your James Stultz page is October's Featured Brick Wall on the WeRelate Facebook page, so I was adding to it as part of that effort. I hope that some others join in and we can find some leads for you. Best Wishes, --cos1776 10:48, 25 October 2017 (UTC)

re:Breconshire [30 October 2017]

Thanks for sorting out the mess that I had made of Breconshire. And to think I was motivated to make the adjustment because I was working on a parish on the opposite side of the Herefordshire-Breconshire border in which the WeRelate index told me the nearest town was in Powys (a county invented in 1974)!

In the alterations to UK local administrations that took place in 1974, Wales was reorganized from thirteen counties down to six which (except for Glamorgan) were given new names in Welsh. In 1996 Wales was reorganized again, breaking down the six counties into smaller sections which better represented the people living within them. Most information available today discusses current geography without noting either of these changes.

I have just discovered a Wikipedia article that I wish I had found when I tried to sort out Glamorgan 18 months ago. I will work closely with the information on these maps before trying to do any more work on Wales again.

Regards, --Goldenoldie 14:41, 30 October 2017 (UTC)

Colonial spelling [12 November 2017]

Colonial spelling was phonetic. Until Webster's dictionary about 1820 there was no proper spelling, nor even a notion that one spelling is correct. Pages should not be created using phonetic spelling even if found in the records as usually there is a different record with a different spelling and both can't be right. Hence what guidelines there are at WeRelate is to use the most universal spelling. So Elizor should be Eleazer, Ebenezor should be Ebenezer, etc. In fact, "Elizor"'s gravestone reads "Eleazer". One would even say the birth name is the worst as it is the oldest and reflects none of any preference the individual himself may have had and represents the most outdated spelling possible. You are creating problems in a collaborative environment by picking spellings that strike you as correct since is no right answer you are picking one example arbitrarily out of many to use. --Jrich 23:27, 10 November 2017 (UTC)

The statements relating to data entry are incorrect, and if there exists such a guideline for standardizing the spelling of a formal given name, it is outdated. When it comes to names, our search engine is quite robust and we have one of the best name variant algorithms available. To demonstrate, a simple Search on your preferred choice of "Eleazer" has no problem in returning the "Elizor" page of interest (#3 in the list). If you don't trust the algorithm, we have Alt name fields available.
We do still have some workarounds for other fields that we have to deal with, but no one should be getting hung up on name variations anymore. Enter what is in the source. If a better source comes to light to prove that the individual may have preferred another spelling during their lifetime or the original source is in error, then by all means, add it to the page and update the primary display name to reflect that. That is how page development in a collaborative environment works. --cos1776 13:32, 11 November 2017 (UTC)
When we don't like rules, they're "outdated"? Help:Style Guide "If the individual used multiple spellings, use the most common or the name most of his children used as the primary name (and name of the page)." Find an article in a credible journal that names a person Elizor in the genealogical summary - I doubt you can. Yes they faithfully quote sources using the spelling found but they normalize the summaries. Yes the search engine works as long as you don't use exact only but it returns other entries first (including Ebenezer!), so the match is not good. Further every reason you give for Elizor is equally valid for me as a reason to change to Eleazer, since that is what all the censuses use and his gravestone and probably all his adult documents. So once more than one source is added (not counting indexes of one source as a different source), the situation will want to change. So you are risking edit war by your practice of exactly emulating one source that you pick based on the accident of what you looked at first. Not to mention what has been practiced on millions of pages over the past ten years. We don't name pages Willyam when it is spelled like that, almost no pages use Elisabeth even though that is actually a common spelling, etc, etc. A little common sense is needed. --Jrich 15:28, 11 November 2017 (UTC)
It has nothing to do with what I like or don't like. We all know that much of the Help namespace is inconsistent and outdated. The content has not been adequately monitored, managed or updated over the years. Many things no longer apply. In this case, the guideline to which you refer pertains to surnames, not given names. It was intended as a guide to managing surname variations that might exist within one or two generations. But even that guideline goes on to suggest using the Alt Name fields if you have reasons to doubt the spelling in the record.
I must admit that you leave me baffled when you say that a search engine match is "not good" if it is not returned first in the list. That is just not true, and I hope you know to always scan the list of returns when searching for a match. Likewise, it is not accurate to conflate the function and guidelines of the wiki page title with those of the name fields. They are not the same thing and do not serve the same purpose. In retrospect, it would have probably been better to use a unique and static (albeit merge-able) id number as a wiki page title here, rather than a combination of names that can change and has to be maintained. As I think that over some more, I wonder if that is what you are meaning to say ... that page titles should use standardized names. I could see that that could be helpful in our present environment when it comes to working with wiki lists, categories, etc., but the practicality of implementing something like that at this point is likely too daunting to pursue. And who decides what is the most standardized spelling for a name anyway? Our users come from many different countries.
So, back to name fields - it was never suggested that one variation must remain the primary display name forever. Names should be entered as they are, and as stated in the previous response, the primary display name can and should be updated if better sources are found. I have no objection to going from "Elizor" to "Eleazer", if you have the sources to support it. You keep saying you do, so go for it!
That brings me to edit wars and escalating arguments in general. I would put forth that edit wars do not arise out of what is initially entered on a page, but rather by the way in which the participants conduct themselves in the ensuing discussions. I think the best way to avoid an edit war is to stick to the sources, to assume that the edits made by others are done in good faith, and to treat others with kindness and respect. --cos1776 22:39, 12 November 2017 (UTC)
Of course, it refers to surnames, but it expresses a philosophy which hopefully is understood. Further the discussion has been had many times, and the position I am advancing is that of Jacobus, so pretty sure it is a reasonable one, especially if one has given any thought to how disparate people can cooperate on a single person having, as they obviously will, different pieces of information, different sources, different interests, and different styles. I already provided a link to a source showing the gravestone and told you that it appears to be used in many census records. I am not going to look them up for you. If you prefer the bad spelling of some town clerk, ignoring other sources, fine. I have other things to do. --Jrich 02:02, 13 November 2017 (UTC)

Hope no one minds if I "jump in" here. Early New England (and elsewhere) records, can easily have half a dozen spellings for given or surnames. For me, ideally, a signature or secondly the original tombstone inscription cements the spelling. Without either, I defer to the most common, traditional if you will, spelling used as names became standardized. It took me a long time to settle on my ancestor "Jan Winans" name (from his will signature which I eventually found). If I had used the spelling from the earliest New Amsterdam and New Haven and Elizabethtown records, his name could have been Jan Wynants, John Winens, Jan Wines, etc., all given by various recorders. If a particular ancestor uses various spellings, I have no choice but to use the most common spelling, since my goal is to come as close to how the person regarded his/her own name, not how the recorder heard or interpreted the name. "Guidelines aside" this will always be my method. I think using only the spelling from birth, marriage, death records makes for a high % of inaccuracy. Neal--SkippyG 17:02, 11 November 2017 (UTC)

@ Neal - You are right on track, except that there is nothing wrong about a name entry going from less accurate to more accurate as the page develops. We see this in dates and places all the time. Thank you for sharing a good example of how a page can mature over time and how the most appropriate name variation to display can eventually become evident. --cos1776 22:39, 12 November 2017 (UTC)

Reuben Hall [2 January 2018]

Hello, I'd like to correspond with you on Reuben Hall. I've been researching the Halls of Smith Co. TN for years and believe Reuben is related to my Claiborne and his brother Nathan. suspected cousins. I had no idea Reuben went to West Virginia but see that. Finding it interesting that he lists SC as his birthplace in the 1850 census. I believe Charlton Hall was his father and he is first in Sumner (Smith) Co. in 1798 so they had to have moved when Reuben was an infant. Do you know if there has been on DNA testing by any of the Reuben Hall descendants? If there are male descendants who bear surname Hall, it would be great to get them into the Hall DNA Group and see if they match my Claiborne's line. If no male Hall, the autosomal DNA would also be helpful.

Glad to have found this today.


Rick Allen--Rick1547 22:48, 24 December 2017 (UTC)

Hi Rick. I apologize for my delayed response due to the holidays. I am glad that you found the site. I am also interested in the surname Hall and in differentiating between the family lines as they migrated through the mid-West and South, so I tend to enter information on them as I come across it. I think there are quite a few Reuben Halls in the WeRelate database now, so I am not sure exactly which one caught your eye. I see that a page for the son of Charlton Hall of Smith County, TN has been started (see Person:Reuben Hall (9)), so there might be a duplicate to clean up or it could be a different person to which you refer. See what you think.
I do not have any information on the state of the DNA testing of any of these lines. I agree that it would be helpful to connect the work done on this site to the DNA databases that are becoming more popular every day. There are some users here who have developed some creative ways to connect that information, but I am behind the curve in that area. If you are interested in pursuing the idea further, we could see how other family lines have handled it. Regards, --cos1776 22:56, 2 January 2018 (UTC)

Hall Family [11 March 2018]

Hello, I noticed you were a watcher on the Seland Hall page. Are you part of his family? Also, I am new at this and trying to add more info to it also and not really succeeding--Jshall1015 15:26, 11 March 2018 (UTC)

Hi. Please see Person talk:Seland Hall (1). I know that WeRelate can be a little confusing at first, but if you stick with it, it does get easier. If you have a specific question about how to do something, feel free to post it on the Support page. There are nice volunteers here willing to help. --cos1776 13:39, 12 March 2018 (UTC)

sakers genealogy [19 March 2018]

Hello my name is brenda sakers ober and i wrote to you before about william saker and asked you about him and your tree. well i have some great news to tell you i have a document that says william's real name was adam saker and the date of his death was feb 13 1828 in anne arundel county. i am sorry but i dont know how to send the documents to you (which i have 5) if by chance you can tell me on how to send them to you i will. thank you brenda sakers ober--Ober24 14:26, 18 March 2018 (UTC)

Hi Brenda - I will contact you privately. Thanks.--cos1776 21:37, 19 March 2018 (UTC)

Joseph Anderson [30 March 2018]

Thank You, My sister and I are new members to the site and are still finding our way around. Than you for creating the Family Name Page for us.--History1800 19:44, 30 March 2018 (UTC)

No problem. Happy to help. --cos1776 19:59, 30 March 2018 (UTC)

DFree User - Marshall family update [13 May 2018]

Hello Thanks for keeping watch over the Gregory & Marshall family pages. I appreciate it. I have just located the Boyd Marshall & Nancy J McCormick marriage information and an unsourced date of death for him which I added to the page. If you need to please feel free to edit etc. He has been one of my HUGE brick walls. Thank You for all the hard work to you and everyone on WeRelate. Take Care. DFree (Debbie Freeman)--DFree 17:31, 13 May 2018 (UTC)

Nathan Bangs (2) [18 May 2018]

Hi Cos,

I've placed a brief bio for Nathan Bangs (2) on his page which seems to contradict the wikipedia Nathan Bangs, and certainly seem like two different men. But both Methodist preachers, both born in Stratford 1778, both with a bro (Herman or Heman)

The bio I added was taken by someone from "A History of Stamford (NY)" by Charles D. Griffin found on a Delaware County site (many years ago) without page #s, but referenced as "Chapters 11 - 14"

If you feel this bio doesn't apply, please just delete. Regards, Neal Gardner--SkippyG 20:12, 18 May 2018 (UTC)

Re: Nathan Bangs: [2]; Re: John Bangs: Find A Grave. Poor excerpt apparently applying death of John to Nathan. --Jrich 21:58, 18 May 2018 (UTC)

Augustus Greme Smith Jr [18 May 2018]

My husband Paul J. Young is the great grandson of Augustus Greme Smith Jr. His mother Rose Mary Young is the daughter of Marguerite Frances Smith. I would love to know any oral history you have about the family, as we always thought Augustus' middle name was Graham.--JRene1980 22:25, 18 May 2018 (UTC)

David Christopher 2 unknown Cobb [22 July 2018]

Thank you for the edits. The Cobb wife is a wild guess. In 1818 David, John Davis and James Cobb posted $2000 bond for Davids sons in Abbeville SC, William and Buckner Griffin Christopher. I have talked to a descendant of James Cobb and she has no Christopher’s in her research, but she does verify his signature. I assume he had to be related in some way to David’s first wife. So for now, I use Cobb. William Christopher died in 1849 in Abbeville, SC, leaving a wife and several children who I will get around to documenting soon. Buckner Christopher had a living descendant who has been Y DNA tested and matches me and the other men from the Nicholas line. His name was BobbyChristopher, he passed at 71 last April.

I am working all the other lines onto WeRelate before I work my personal line in and David is my 3rd G grandfather as well as 4 other men who have Y tested to my haplogroup. Davids father Ambrose Sr had many sons and their descendants are abundant, so I take one son at a time.

Once I get to my line I have tons of records. I did put my direct line back to Ambrose Sr, but I have not documented all of Aunts, Uncles and cousins in my direct line on WeRelate yet.--Chrstdvd 19:03, 22 July 2018 (UTC)