User talk:DataAnalyst

Old topics archived: 2010-2014


Welcome [29 December 2021]

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

  1. Take the WeRelate tour to see what you can do.
  2. Watch the "Getting Started" tutorial video to learn how to make ancestor web pages.
  3. Explore the Step by step Tutorials, if needed.

If you need any help, I will be glad to answer your questions. Just click on my signature link below and then click on the “Leave a message” link under my name in the upper left corner of my profile page. Thanks for participating and see you around! Debbie Freeman --DFree 22:31, 1 January 2010 (EST)

I see no reason for making this change:

"Person:Ann Tripp (4)" has been changed by DataAnalyst at 18:00, 27 December 2021. Edit summary: meant to be the same person (wife of Edmund Ingalls) - merge into Person:Annis Telbe (1) - review/undo

View the changes:

View the current version:

Ann Tripp is a separate person and the daughter of John Tripp and Mary Paine.--Sheri 20:07, 28 December 2021 (UTC)

Do you have a source for that? North America Family Histories lists 10 children of John Trippe and Mary Payne, and the list doesn't include an Ann. I assume that is why other contributors unlinked her page from the family.--DataAnalyst 01:00, 29 December 2021 (UTC)

There is no add comment button to this topic:

see no reason for making this change:

"Person:Ann Tripp (4)" has been changed by DataAnalyst at 18:00, 27 December 2021. Edit summary: meant to be the same person (wife of Edmund Ingalls) - merge into Person:Annis Telbe (1) - review/undo

View the changes:

View the current version:

Ann Tripp is a separate person and the daughter of John Tripp and Mary Paine.--Sheri 20:07, 28 December 2021 (UTC)

   Do you have a source for that? North America Family Histories lists 10 children of John Trippe and Mary Payne, and the list doesn't include an Ann. I assume that is why other contributors unlinked her page from the family.--DataAnalyst 01:00, 29 December 2021 (UTC) 

However I cannot find a sources so keep the change you made. Thank you for the reply and all of your hard work.--Sheri 17:18, 29 December 2021 (UTC)

Crawshawbooths [17 February 2015]


Quoting from you:

"I notice that you merged the Place page for Crawshawbooth with the page for Higher Booths last year. Should Higher Booths have an alternate name of Crawshawbooth? As it is, if you type Crawshawbooth on someone's page and wait for WeRelate suggestions, none show up. I believe that Higher Booths would show up if it had the alternate name - I'm just not sure how correct that would be.--DataAnalyst 22:07, 13 February 2015 (UTC)"

I just had a look at Higher Booths and noted that the first line is "Crawshawbooth and Crawshaw-Booth have been re-directed here." When I do a redirect I will put the place redirected in the Alternate Name box if it has a relationship to the Placename, but even then it doesn't seem to be read by the software--a redirect is necessary for that to happen. I agree this a frustration. So many places get their names changed over time, even if the change is simply the addition or deletion of a hyphen.

I don't add many people to WR, I work on trying to update our Places database, so I didn't know that if one typed in Crawshawbooth you wouldn't be pointed directly to Higher Booths. However, I am pretty sure that if you save a Person Page with the place Crawshawbooth on it, Crawshawbooth will come up in blue. Then, if you go to edit the page, in the box in question, Crawshawbooth will follow the pipe and Higher Booths will precede it.

My next comments are made after doing more investigating this morning.

  • English Jurisdictions, which is linked to the FamilySearch Wiki, tells a completely different story on Crawshawbooth. English Jurisdictions sticks to one year, 1851, and gives all the information it can find on a place for that year. Higher Booths is not on its database, but Crawshawbooth is, so it looks like there was some name-changing between then and 1870 (Wilson's Gazetteer). Not only that but Crawshawbooth was in the parish of Goodshaw (not Haslingden as was inferred for Higher Booths).
  • Google Earth shows that Crawshawbooth is still a living community--with Higher Booths the name of a street in the village.
  • Wikipedia has a decent article on Crawshawbooth, well worth quoting from. The article on Haslingden (there is probably a hill between Haslingden and Crawshawbooth) mentions Higher Booth but not Crawshawbooth.
  • Higher Booth is listed in a list of parishes in Registration Districts; Crawshawbooth is not.

Considering the number of people who hailed from Crawshawbooth on WR I am beginning to wonder if the whole area ought to be rewritten. It's another part of the United Kingdom I really must go back and edit. Aaarrghhh!

(This August I will have lived in the UK for 50 years. But I am not familiar with every nook and cranny of the country.)

I'll be glad to hear from you further on this problem. --Goldenoldie 10:53, 14 February 2015 (UTC)


Just got your note.

I had just about decided to reinstate Crawshawbooth, but thought I would wait until I got your opinion on the matter. FamilySearch really had it sorted out--my usual places to check were well and truly hiding it. I think Upper Booths is the same place. I want to inspect a 19th-century census or two for the area and see how the titles on the pages are set up.

WeRelate certainly has a lot of links to the place, many more than you would expect for a village this size. After writing yesterday I sorted out one of the Binns families (parents, 12 children, wives), but they have a lot more cousins with red-inked places to be corrected yet.

Regards, Pat --Goldenoldie 16:13, 16 February 2015 (UTC)

I have already put Crawshawbooth back into the WR database and am also adding something for Goodshaw. Neither place-page is finished yet, but it's just about dinner-prep time here so I shall have to stop for 1-1/2 hours or so. I've got a decent description of Crawshawbooth sorted but I still have to link the villages to thier places in governmental hierarchy, both ecclesiastical and civil and add some specific Research Tips. It's amazing what that inspection of Google Earth taught me yesterday. It seems that Crawshawbooth and Goodshaw have traded places in importance.

I have bumped into JustAlf's work before (I clean old pages when I need a break from making places pages) and I know how much is lacking in quality. I have subs to and to The Genealogist (good census databases). I also saw a message on the FamilySearch wiki yesterday that FS are currently indexing Lancashire parish records (though it's hard to know how old that note is).

If you ever need details on English or Scots geography, let me know. There are a great many counties I haven't tackled yet, but as time goes on I learn more about how to get around the system. Like Ontario, in 1974 the UK had a "nationwide municipal reorganization". They did the whole country at once and a number of places later decided they didn't like their new "neigbbours" and put up the fences again, e.g. Avon and Humberside. Great fun!

--Goldenoldie 17:12, 16 February 2015 (UTC)

I think I've found the details on Crawshawbooth and Higher Booths that we've been trying to sort out from other sources: The Victoria County History article on Higher Booths

I wish all VCH pieces were written as well as this one.

--Goldenoldie 10:57, 17 February 2015 (UTC)

Addendum to Crawshawbooth [14 February 2015]

Lancashire Parish Clerks have pre civil registration bmds online for St. Mary's, Goodshaw.

Pat --Goldenoldie 11:07, 14 February 2015 (UTC)

Wolcott as a source [8 April 2015]

Hi. I noticed that you were adding cites to Darrell Wolcott's Ancient Wales Studies site. I would avoid doing this. Wolcott is a flake. His site is set up to make it appear as if there were some sort of scholarly organization behind his work, but it is just him. Whenever I have checked his work against something that I have researched myself, I find that it omits obvious evidence and lacks perspective. Stewart Baldwin's assessment is about right:

--Werebear 11:18, 8 April 2015 (UTC)

Thanks for letting me know. I don't think I did much harm - I think I only used him for estimated years. Feel free to correct if they are too out of whack, but I don't think they are.--DataAnalyst 23:49, 8 April 2015 (UTC)

Guidelines for priority [16 April 2015]

Janet, I tried to click on the link you left at the watercooler, Fund Raising Proposal 4/11 "As a community, have a discussion about general guidelines for priority. Are we most interested in making changes that will attract new users (e.g., private space for living individuals) or retain users once they come (e.g., reduce pain points), or do we want to balance these? I have set up a separate topic for this" but the link seems to be circular and doesn't go to a separate page. Worse, why hasn't someone else mentioned this earlier? Seems like a great idea to me! But maybe I'm missing something. . . I have a couple pain points I'd sure like worked on! --janiejac 02:06, 16 April 2015 (UTC)

The topic was further down on the same page, but I think links directly to topics get broken when the last updated date is changed on a topic header. I have fixed the link (at least for now). If it doesn't work, just look for the topic WeRelate Improvement Priorities on the Watercooler page.--DataAnalyst 00:13, 17 April 2015 (UTC)

Tree cleanups [26 April 2015]

Data, I don't want to subtract at all from the great work you have done on the tree cleanups. IN Genealogist had a very messy one, I made a go at a cleanup of it awhile back but I could find little data on most of the families there. But anyway, if you are looking for one to do in the future, look at the tree of 'JonJay'. We believe his tree is the largest on WR, and it makes IN genealogist's look like a fully sourced scholarly tree. Almost no sources, incomplete dates and places ("Born 1898 PA Died 1932 Ohio), 5000+ livings. We debated whether or not it would be better just to delete it, but it is too large to be deleted. His interest was mainly Ohio families, and since I live in Ohio, I have occasionally cleaned up parts of it, but it is in my opinion too big for one person to clean up.--Daniel Maxwell 02:09, 27 April 2015 (UTC)

Thanks. I will take a look at it and see what I can do to help.--DataAnalyst 03:19, 27 April 2015 (UTC)

Page deletion experiment [10 July 2015]

Thanks for suggesting at the Watercooler a test of deletion behavior. I've created two pages for you to edit because I would like to try deleting by both direct delete and tree-delete. The pages are Person:Mary Unknown (7067) and Person:Sarah Unknown (3023). Please make some edit to each. (Remember to uncheck "Watch this page" and "This is a minor edit" before submitting the edit.) Thanks. 20:19, 10 July 2015 (UTC)

I have edited both and am watching neither.--DataAnalyst 21:00, 10 July 2015 (UTC)

Duplicates [4 October 2015]

Re: Duplicates [4 October 2015] Hi, Gayle. I know you have been cleaning up some duplicates that I created. Lest you think I am being careless and creating duplicates when I should know better, I thought I would let you know why they are occurring. I am working on a multi-month project to clean up the largest old GEDCOM (Jonjay) (at Daniel Maxwell's request). In many cases, Jonjay did not know the maiden name of the wife (or he had it wrong) and I have been renaming both person and family pages as I have found the correct info. WeRelate does not warn of duplicates on a rename, and I've had so few hits when I manually checked for duplicates that I thought I would leave it to automation to find the duplicates. In general, you have been merging the duplicates before I have bothered to check the report. I hope you will continue to do so - but of course, I can check the report periodically as well.

I've been working on the GEDCOM since the end of April and still have quite a way to go - lots and lots of incomplete information. Thanks for the help on the duplicates end. --DataAnalyst 02:10, 5 October 2015 (UTC)

Not a problem -- I think we've all said OOPS way more times than we want to admit. I assumed that you were working on something, since I know that you have put a lot of work into getting rid of duplicates in the past. My general policy, if there is some possible uncertainty and one of the watchers is an active contributor, is to ask. Some don't bother to reply or take action. So, I appreciate the fact that you do. I'll try to keep the JonJay files in mind, and go ahead and merge, and assume that you can unmerge if you disagree. Gayel --GayelKnott 02:23, 5 October 2015 (UTC)

links would be useful? [23 February 2016]

I think what you are doing on jonjay's gedcom is great. I was thinking I should try to help when I have an hour to kill. I looked at Person:Amanda Wolcot (1). The sources are specified so sparsely it is hard to identify them. Assuming you have them displayed in a window or tab, wouldn't it be useful to at least copy the URL to them into the source citation. For Amanda, I tried looking up her Find a Grave and no Amanda Johnson d. Ohio 1907 except one that was b. 1847 and didn't have the right family members. The census entry I found with a 1900 birth of Nov 1839 was a black lady and the daughter's page says she was white. I am sure I just need to keep looking, trying Nettie, widening a few criteria, etc., but I think it illustrates that the citations might be a little underspecified? --Jrich 15:23, 23 February 2016 (UTC)

You're right in this example that I forgot to put the name in the citation. I have been trying to when it might not be obvious, but I'm obviously going to miss occasionally. I thought about putting in URL's but even with minimal citations, it's taken me countless hours over 9 months fixing up this GEDCOM and I just didn't want to add that much more work to the task. I am within a week or two of being done what I set out do to (find and delete living individuals, and replace married names with maiden names or Unknown). I appreciate anyone else who is inclined to add URL's or citation details and have tried to provide sufficient info to find sources, but on my more tired days, it doesn't always happen. Sorry for the times I miss.--DataAnalyst 00:27, 24 February 2016 (UTC)

DOUD research [13 March 2016]

Hi Janet,

Thank you so much for your research and citations. Having seen many of your contributions, I was confident that you would handle the "Hannah Salmon" proposal deftly. I undertook the DOUD cleanup because all the DOUD lines were/are rather poorly cited, but I've discovered one line that comes through my county in Ohio, and may have "married into" my mother's Irish family. Thanks again. Neal--SkippyG 23:39, 12 March 2016 (UTC)

You're welcome. I seem to always being doing something in WeRelate, so I was glad to do some research of immediate benefit for someone.--DataAnalyst 23:40, 12 March 2016 (UTC)
Hey, Neal - I have done as much as I can on the first generation or so. Any missing citations are because I could not find them in Guilford VRs. I will probably poke around a bit more in the VRs, but if there is any date in particular you want me to look harder for, please let me know.--DataAnalyst 00:12, 14 March 2016 (UTC)

Wow ! You've done so much, I can't thank you enough. I'm using the Trumbull Co., Ohio records to "flesh out" the Doud/Dowds here. If I run across anything I'm unable to access, I'll post a short note on Support. Thanks. Neal--SkippyG 01:54, 14 March 2016 (UTC)

Miscellaneous [3 July 2016]

Jacobus, Donald Lines. History and Genealogy of the Families of Old Fairfield. (New Haven, Conn.: The Tuttle, Morehouse & Taylor Company, 1930-1932). 1:518.
  'Children[of Ezekiel and Rebecca (Wiekle)Sanford],recorded at Fairfield:...
   Elizabeth, b. 6 Sept 1679; m.(1)Joshua Jackson; m.(2)23 Nov 1699, Joseph Jackson;
   m.(3)Thomas Chambers.'

Retrieved from " Joseph_Jackson_and_Elizabeth_Sanford_%281%29"

Requesting your opinion(s)... [17 September 2016]

I would be interested in your perspective on some work I have done (it's been in the works for a number of years, so I hope you'll be able to be kind! :) )....

I have a woefully inadequate overview on this page. You will find that it refers to our transcription of Savage's Genealogical Dictionary of the First Settlers of New England. It also refers to a sample of an extract I've been able to create here.

If you're interested in my python source, it's not long, and I will gladly make it available.

Best Regards...

--jrm03063 15:15, 19 August 2016 (UTC)

Hi. I like to mull things over, so give me a few days. In the meantime, it is not clear to me whether you intend to include all text relevant to a person in the citation. For example, your first sample has a citation for Samuel Abbe with 2 ellipses (...), and therefore much of the interesting and potentially useful text is missing. I'd be interested in seeing what the markup tags look like. Thanks--DataAnalyst 23:34, 19 August 2016 (UTC)
Sure - take your time!
I could dump the entire sketch if we wanted to - but I figured that might be excessive. Right now, I start by assuming we want about 30 characters either side of any content that's marked by annotation for a person (an ordinary wiki page link). It moves further left and right until I encounter a space (didn't want to break words in the middle). Annotation to a particular person can occur more than once in a given sketch - so multiple sections can arise from a single sketch. If one section overlaps another - then I create a larger contiguous section. If the sections don't overlap after expansion - I set them apart w/ellipses. I likewise use ellipses if a section that I'm quoting doesn't start at the beginning of a sketch or reach the end.
On the left hand side of each reference - there's an active link to the page of the Savage transcript where the content originated. To see the original markup - just follow the left-side links to the corresponding transcript page - then open it for editing. You'll see that what's really happening is that ordinary wiki markup, and templates used to control cosmetic features, are also serving to provide the semantic information that makes everything possible. The original transcript pages themselves are intentionally useful on their own.
I hope you won't hold any of my initial formatting choices against me! Some of them are a little arbitrary - and the initial dump ought to be understood as a demonstration of the kind of thing that's possible - not the exact and only thing.
--jrm03063 00:11, 20 August 2016 (UTC)
I've added this page with my screen-scraping code - which reads the Savage transcript and writes the extract. I don't mean it as THE answer for any particular purpose - but to show that there's nothing very magical here. --jrm03063 03:03, 24 August 2016 (UTC)

Hi - Sorry for the delayed response. I had set a goal of cleaning up the in_genealogist tree and was unable to focus on anything else until it was done. Now that I have taken a good look at the proposal, and a few responses to things that have been going on lately, I am ready to respond, and have done so on the Talk page of your proposal. I hope that conversation will continue and we can come up with a solution that everyone can live with. --DataAnalyst 19:58, 17 September 2016 (UTC)

Removal of cohabitation assertions? [29 August 2016]

I'm certainly sympathetic to those who thought that the fact assertions had a garish implementation - I always figured that the display would get improved when someone figured out what a better display looked like. But isn't the right answer here to just fix the template? Then you fix ALL OF THEM and you never had to touch a page that used them! When you remove the template - you only "fix" that page - and you destroy the opportunity to easily change the appearance of the collection of hundreds of pages at one go.

It also makes it much easier if you want different members of the community to enter information in a way that will have a standard appearance. Just use the template and you'll get the right stuff. Trying to get a wide community to do common things commonly - turns out to be pretty impossible.

It just seems very sad to do things in a way that makes things much less maintainable going forward ...  :( --jrm03063 02:09, 26 August 2016 (UTC)

One of the flaws of WeRelate is that no method to represent areas of disagreement was designed in. This may well reflect a limitation in GEDCOM, which a practical person would recognize as a practical limitation on what can be done. Rather, the representation of disagreements was left "to see what people do with it". But, that, of course, means that everybody does something different because everybody comes from different environments where such situations are handled differently and everybody has different philosophies about what is needed. It does make it difficult to get the community to behave in a[n] universal manner, which in my opinion, does diminish the website a little. But that seems to be the state of affairs.
On the other hand, at some point, you may simply have to face the fact that your "assertions" are not found useful by people. I know I don't, regardless of color, for reasons I posted to the Watercooler. You may find them useful because, as you stated, "I wanted to be freed from trying to write something intelligent in those cases", but to others writing something intelligent to justify one's assertions is exactly what collaborative genealogy is all about. --Jrich 02:59, 26 August 2016 (UTC)
The suggestion is out there, and well explained in the associated documentation. There are good data practice issues for doing things this way, which is why I was particularly surprised that this person had done the things they did. With their background in data management, I assume this is a misunderstanding that can be resolved. At least for me, there is something concrete that I want to understand. --jrm03063 17:24, 26 August 2016 (UTC)

I can't remember the last time I might have removed a cohabitation template, because I haven't been working in the class of people that it would apply to for a long time. This template does not apply to every situation where there are illegitimate children, because in most cases, the couple never lived together. I might have removed the template if it was applied to a couple who had one illegitimate child together, because in such a case, I would not assume that they ever lived together.
Also, jrm, I'm not sure I'm on the same page as you when it comes to templates, for two reasons:
  • I generally think standards are a good idea, but they are also usually created after consultation and discussion. Even on a small working team at work, if I come up with what I think is a good standard, I run it by others to look for feedback and to ensure they are aligned. If I don't get buy-in, which could be for any number of reasons, I either go back to the drawing board or drop the idea. Standards without alignment just don't work - very few of us are in a position to force others to follow a particular standard just because we think it is a good idea. Standards need to be collaboratively built and/or actively sold, which is very difficult to do without verbal conversations (and a lot of listening).
  • The second reason I am lukewarm on templates is that I just am not interested in memorizing them all or looking them up every time. I use a couple of templates regularly (speedy delete and source-wikipedia, and have just started using Fgravemem) and have enough trouble trying to remember which one has a hyphen and how to properly capitalize them. My job gives me enough things to keep track of, and genealogy is meant to be a hobby that helps relax me. Having to keep track of things that don't show up in drop-downs is just too much effort. If "not married" (a more useful term than cohabitation because you don't have to know whether or not they actually lived in the same household) were in a drop-down, I'd be happy to use it.
Having said that, templates might be a great way to try a proposed standard out to see how it flies before adding it to a drop-down (although I'm not sure that WeRelate is open to adding drop-down items that are not supported in GEDCOM). In this case, I would say that "cohabitation" does NOT fly well, because it is not accurate for the majority of situations in which there are illegitimate children. However, "not married" (or maybe "not formally married") might be an acceptable standard.
And speaking of genealogy being a way that I relax, I would thank both of you to keep your sniping at each other off my talk page. In fact, I am removing the worst of it, because it has no place in this discussion.--DataAnalyst 23:23, 26 August 2016 (UTC)
I think I get it. Thanks for your reply - I'll try to respect your wishes. I posted here because I really wanted to talk with you in particular. I regret that I'm not sure what to do when I reach out in this way - and I'm essentially pursued by someone. --jrm03063 23:59, 29 August 2016 (UTC)

Thanks for your thoughtful reply! [19 September 2016]

Thanks for the time you obviously invested looking at some of my ideas. I don't want to oversimplify - and I owe everyone a complete response - but I think I'm in substantial agreement with you. Key points...

  • Leave hand created citations alone
  • Person pages that don't presently reference Savage are the best candidates for doing anything (with whatever that is remaining somewhat T.B.D.).
  • Any kind of automatic extract should be clearly marked as such (that's needed anyway - so that the extracts can be updated as the transcript is updated).
  • Different extraction algorithms will be needed for different kinds of transcriptions (census records that only name heads of households being an interesting case).

Even if things ever got to the point where I was approved to run a bot doing things with Savage - even THAT - would need to be run on a small selection of pages, with the community being given a chance to weigh in before going live across a wider domain. While I've been mulling this for a long time, the community needs a chance to understand something before being expected to consent or not.

Thanks again for your considerate reply.

--jrm03063 14:32, 19 September 2016 (UTC)

You're welcome.
In regards to the point of the community having a chance to understand it, I trust you realize that it is a 2-way street. It is a rare programmer who thinks of everything on their own - most will find that there are people out there who behave differently than they could predict (like me adding notes in-line in citation text), causing the programmer to have to rethink part of the solution. I am currently involved in a beta test and interacting with the system in ways the programmer never anticipated - happens all the time (that's why beta testing exists). That is part of the reason for small initial batches (whether to insert or update excerpts) - there may be results that no one could predict due to the way people have entered their data or how they might edit something you add to a page.--DataAnalyst 23:41, 19 September 2016 (UTC)
I think I get it. I've been a commercial developer for over 30 years. I've worked on a wide domain of pages here - in the context of several different projects - since early '08.
When working a project here, I try to develop a small group consensus, then move incrementally toward larger groups and eventually the community at large. If consensus doesn't develop anywhere along that trajectory - things die then and there. The difference this time - was that I had to request wider input and soft buy-in sooner - simply to validate that the effort be allowed an opportunity to develop such consensus (or not) on its merits.
So thanks for keeping the door ajar... for the moment - no one has committed to anything. --jrm03063 01:23, 20 September 2016 (UTC)

Thanks for fixing Marie Louise Davis [18 March 2017]

Thank you for taking the time to find enough documentation to verify Marie Louise Davis. I didn't think she belonged as a child of Hannah Hughes Ash/Davis but it needed better documentation to prove it. --janiejac 12:12, 18 March 2017 (UTC)

Suggestion list [7 July 2017]

Just looking at that suggestion list, I see several that may be duplicate in function from a programmer's point of view. Perhaps would be good to take that in consideration when counting number of watchers.

I note these all pertain to sorting one page or another:
Filter for "What links here"|22 Jul 2011
Sort template for the 'what links here' page|3 Jul 2016
Sort by page title|15 Jun 2011
Sorting Surnames on source pages|13 Oct 2011
Sorting marriages on person pgs
Burials - Order in Facts and Events

The following pertain to adding buttons to pages. The top two appear to be duplicate:
Need an 'add button to search results pg when I get zero results|25 Mar 2013 (note that you had planned to archive the dup suggestion)
Button for 'add' when search turns up empty
Button to print excluded people during gedcom import
Add Source Citation buttons before and after each Citation ID
GEDCOM upload: Location button

Perhaps we ought to have a new suggestion: need the ability to merge duplicate suggestions! Which might? prevent folks from voting for both duplicates. I'm probably guilty of adding duplicate suggestion when I can't find what I'm looking for right away.

I left a comment at the watercooler to see if folks would create a new list of their 10 most wanted features - and if they would do so, I'd help sort and count them. Let me know if I can be of any help. --janiejac 17:07, 3 July 2017 (UTC)

Thanks, Janie. I will be looking for overlaps and grouping common themes together. I have already made a start (offline). I don't think we should be merging duplicate suggestions, per se. Instead, I will be using the suggestion list to create a list of requests that are ready for Dallan to run with. (This calls on my IT Analysis skills, so I am a good fit for this.) I'm assuming that we will then get the community to vote on those requests - although effort required should also come into play when deciding which to implement.
In the meantime, the watcher count helps me to focus on the most important suggestions. Having said that, I appreciate common themes being brought to my attention because it can speed up my process. And your suggestion to get people to vote on their top 10 in the meantime until I have the request list ready can also help me to focus my efforts.
I appreciate your offer of support - I will get back to you if I see an additional way you can help. I know you are very keen to see improvements to the site get made, as am I.
I have a busy day today, then back to work for 3 days, so you might not see any progress from me until next weekend. Take care. --DataAnalyst 18:20, 3 July 2017 (UTC)
Hey, Janie. If you could compile a list of all fact types that users have asked to have added or removed, and which suggestion each comes from, that would be great! Thanks. --DataAnalyst 03:14, 8 July 2017 (UTC)

@DataAnalyst would it make sense to re-evaluate the technique at hand? currently wikimedia. would it make sense to have a 2.0 version using modern development techniques like DDD and MVC ? Just asking. Thx Ron woepwoep 21:44, 3 July 2017 (UTC)
Hi, Ron. This is a free site, and does not have the resources to make wholesale changes to the underlying technology.--DataAnalyst 01:54, 4 July 2017 (UTC)

Request list [19 July 2017]

Hi, Hope I've corrected my answers properly. I think you've created a great way of evaluating requests, but I felt a little like an English/Theater major asked to take an Advanced Calculus final. That's me, the English/Theater guy. --SkippyG 15:11, 19 July 2017 (UTC)

Voting mistakes [29 July 2017]

Hi Janet, Just wanted to reassure myself, that the "over the top" voting (one voter has used 22 points, etc.) will be adjusted in the final tally. As stands, certain proposals gain more approval than others by incorrect voting. As a former Associate Editor for a business magazine publisher, I've participated in similar department votes, points being assigned by job title and proposal rating. Even in a small conference room, most of the discussion centered on the process more than the proposals. This was ultimately scrapped for a yes or no vote with final decisions made by 3 key staff; not to suggest that this is appropriate in this setting. Without pressure, how will this pan out ? --SkippyG 15:20, 29 July 2017 (UTC)

Replied on Skippy's page. I'm not seeing any over-voting.--DataAnalyst 16:35, 29 July 2017 (UTC)

Either my error, or the user I counted as a 22, adjusted their vote. Still the "too many votes" on a single proposal boosts that to a different place on the list. --SkippyG 16:46, 29 July 2017 (UTC)

For the vote that was not a multiple, the extra 1 point did not make a difference in ranking (I ignored the 1 point anyway), and the item (Show all spouses in search results) is too far down the list to be in the top 10 points of effort either way. That is why I did not bother following up. On the other hand, Dallan supported this change a long time ago, and might decide to squeeze it in if he has time some day for a 2-pointer but not a 4- or 6-pointer. Ultimately, Dallan will be making the final decisions - the voting lets him know where there will be the most "bang for the buck", based on community input.--DataAnalyst 16:57, 29 July 2017 (UTC)

Helmi Olson and Carl Bjorndah [22 August 2017]

Hi Janet I am doing some research into finding my cousins birth father and it appears there are common DNA relations (via ancestry) with Helmi Olson. My cousin is 70 now (b 1947) so her birth father would have passed away by now I am sure. Helmi (1881-?) is from Finland and she married Carl (Karl) Bjorndahl around 1906 onwards. Carl died in 1915 and Helmi was left with two young children in Sask - Mildred and Arnold. Helmi's father was Norwegian and her mother Finnish so she has both Norwegian and Finnish blood. I am related to her via the Norwegian side. Do you have any more information about Helmi as I am at a bit of a dead end. I see you have loaded her in your tree. Gary Dewar is a 2-3rd cousin - his mother was Helmi's only daughter - Mildred. He has not been responding to our messages via ancestry unfortunately.

I would be most grateful of any help - to find out if Helmi married again and had any more children - or who, if any, her siblings are because those are the connections. I cannot find the life of me any record of her immigration, marriage or parents - or anything other than 1900 US Census (Ironwood, Michigan) and the 1921 Census of Canada (Watrous, Sask)! I see that you have a note on your tree that she may have died in her 60's of a heart attack and she was a wonderful woman?

Looking forward to your reply!

Jo Walsh (Olson from Minnesota/Saskatchewan relative, but living in New Zealand) Jwalsh9 11:38, 22 August 2017 (UTC)

Bjorndahl's [4 September 2017]

Hi Janet, I received an email from Rick and I am just about to email him back. Thank you so much for passing on my details to him. I hope I can find out some more information about Helmi.

I was just wondering if any of the Bjorndahl's have had their DNA done via ancestry by any chance? I have and obviously my cousin has too - which is how we linked up. And of course I know Gary Dewar has because he had shown up as a cousin to both of us too (son of Mildred Bjorndahl) - but I think this is via Helmi and not the Bjorndahl's so it would be interesting to be able to have this confirmed.

Thanks again,

Jo--Jwalsh9 10:55, 28 August 2017 (UTC)

uploading persons with poor source info [4 September 2017]

You wrote: 1 Sep 2017: The tree created by Genealogist84 requires sources for most of its 47,000+ persons. Birth and death info is also often lacking. Pick a century, find a page that has few watchers, and start researching.--DataAnalyst 16:34, 1 September 2017 (UTC)

So I looked at this tree and found a David Jackson that looked familiar. I found that I had worked on this line years ago (when I didn't know much) and had a tree at for him. So I downloaded that tree and put it into my desktop to try to bring it up to date. But I find it has LOTS of citations from "World Family Tree Vol. 11, Ed. 1" Broderbund software. I believe that is considered nearly as bad as no citation at all. I don't have time to completely redo the tree and I'm seeing some info for which there may not be a better source. If World Family Tree should not be used, I could just remove it as a source; but then I would be adding persons with no source at all which would add to the problem of unsourced persons on WeRelate. Should I leave the source or delete both the poor source and the persons connected to the source; or should I just upload the whole thing even with the uncertain source? I tend to want to upload the whole 150 persons but I know there are those who want to reserve WeRelate for only well sourced info. (BTW, this is not my Jackson line but I seem to have become a Jackson collector.) --janiejac 16:02, 4 September 2017 (UTC)

I don't know much about World Family Tree as a source, other than that I assume it is a collection of family trees researched by other amateurs like ourselves. If you do upload the tree, I would suggest keeping the source - it at least lets other researchers know something about the tree. As to whether or not you should upload the tree, that would depend on how reliable you think it is. If you can spot-check it and confirm that it looks reasonably reliable, then go ahead and upload it. We definitely want well-researched and well-sourced pages, but sometimes we start with someone else's research that looks reasonably reliable and add better sources later. My opinion, anyway.--DataAnalyst 16:12, 4 September 2017 (UTC)
I believe World Family Tree was supported by familytreemaker software, as a mechanism to allow people to "share" their research. I believe you could buy these and get multiple copies of the same family, usually either identically vague (i.e., blindly copied from each other) or wildly different (i.e., no credibility) and of course, almost entirely unsourced. So yes it is exactly the type of source (like .ftw or .ged files, etc.) that are discouraged. I believe most pages sporting WFT estimates, often giving a range of 50 or more years, probably originated from one of these sources. Like so many of these sources, there may be some good data in there, but it is so deeply buried among garbage, the only way to make it worth anything is to re-research it and find the original sources. --Jrich 16:53, 4 September 2017 (UTC)
Agreed that World Family Tree is about reliable as "Ancestry Trees". But also agree that Janet's comment is probably the best answer for Janie in this particular situation -- info is already on WeRelate with NO sources, if Janie adds "World Family Tree" as a source (one way or another), it adds a huge alert to others that there may be problems. When I look at other trees as part of researching, "World Family Tree" basically tells me not to waste a whole lot of time looking for an obscure source, whereas with no source you never know if it's someone's creative imagination or an obscure reference in some local history archive.--GayelKnott 18:55, 4 September 2017 (UTC)
Thanks everyone for your input! I'm finding sources for a lot of it but just don't think I'll have time to properly source all of it. So far, I've found only one outright error so all the references from the World Family Tree have been good hints! --janiejac 19:46, 4 September 2017 (UTC)

Correct use of 1900 standard [28 September 2017]

Margaret Burrows

Hi Janet, Would you take a quick look at the above Margaret's page & her sibs ? Margaret's birth is recorded in New London, Conn. VR in 1677, but POB is noted as Groton, Conn (w/note in description). The Town of Groton was not created out of the Town of New London until 1705. Is this the correct usage of the 1900 rule ? To me, the POB should be New London Town, with perhaps a note stating that in 1705 the area became Groton, partially because both are still in existence, & in 1677 no governing authority for Groton existed. I'd very much appreciate another opinion. Thanks.--SkippyG 22:30, 28 September 2017 (UTC)

Place fields are specifying a location, not the governing authority. For one thing, naming governing authority would require use of historical names and so are dependent on dates. Changing an estimate by one year may require changing the place name. There may have been no governing authority in fact. If you want the place to map correctly, you would use the place name whose page most accurately gives the coordinates of the location because that is what the software will use when it does the mapping in the Pedigree Map (or any other features that now or in the future try to process the name as a location - Pedigree Map being the only one I've played with). In the specific case at hand, the coordinates of Groton will be in Groton, while the coordinates of New London will be in a part of New London that is outside of Groton, and thus will map incorrectly if the name New London is used instead of Groton. There are of course multiple ways to provide alternative names as has been discussed many times, although the best in my opinion is to give a source citation that explains any naming issues, i.e., baptism records showing what parish they lived in, a deed explaining where the property was, or similar. All too often, piping ends up as an unsourced assertion, and may be erased because another user thinks it unnecessary or overwrites it in a GEDCOM upload, etc. And often many times a place is known to a far finer degree than can be supported with place page naming, but that is all enriching factual information that can be documented in a source citation. --Jrich 01:17, 29 September 2017 (UTC)

Margaret Badcock (2) [19 November 2017]

If I read the history correctly, often not the case, the citation of Appleton's book on the Badcock family was added by you. There is a comment attached saying "(The book contains some additional arguments in support of these theories.)", which having investigated book (e.g., here) leaves me puzzled because I see no further discussion of the issue other than the specific quote provided - unless I missed something (I only read the sections on generation one and two). I know why Margaret is thought to be the sister of Robert (Henry Leland's will named his my loving brother though I don't see that stated here) but would like to find out what connection there is between Margaret and George, or is it simply transitive because George is Robert's brother? Thanks, --Jrich 18:54, 19 November 2017 (UTC)

Oh, boy - that goes back a way for me. I think I was probably referring to the comments that tie David to his probable sons - the fact that he was in Dorchester in 1640 (as were George and Robert about 1650) and the names of descendants of James. It is a bit strong to call them arguments. I agree that there is nothing in here to argue that Margaret was related, and the assumption that she was a sister of George is undoubtedly transitive. Feel free to update the comments if you see fit.--DataAnalyst 19:42, 19 November 2017 (UTC)
Thanks. --Jrich 19:45, 19 November 2017 (UTC)

Jupiter [22 January 2018]

Jupiter got a mention in John Marius Wilson's Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales of 1870-72 (A Vision of Britain through Time website) as a colliery within the parish of Wallsend. So I added it back and immediately redirected it.

Regards, --Goldenoldie 10:13, 22 January 2018 (UTC)

Good Bye Dryford [3 February 2018]

So glad to see it go. I hope Wikipedia had some red faces over that one. --Goldenoldie 22:17, 3 February 2018 (UTC)

Keffer/Keefer [28 February 2018]

Hi Janet

I see you are doing some housecleaning to the Keffer clan. I worked on the Ontario ones about four years ago merely out of curiosity. I notice you haven't added any sources for your changes.

Lewis Keffer (21) moved gradually north from Vaughan to [someplace in] Haliburton and married twice along the way. He also changed his name to Keefer. I am wondering when he changed his name (or an Ancestry transcriber did it for him). Unfortuately my worldwide Ancestry subscription will not let me out of the UK at the moment so I can't do any checking.

Regards --Goldenoldie 11:44, 28 February 2018 (UTC)

Hi, Goldenoldie. I assume you meant Lewis Keffer (1) (1865-1939). He was using the name Keefer by 1891 when he married Florence Dalton. I have added the source. His gravestone also says Keefer (I added the Find A Grave link).
I am not doing a general cleanup, but trying to resolve all pages named Living. I updated and renamed the page of one of his children yesterday. Take care.--DataAnalyst 00:04, 1 March 2018 (UTC)

Blocking spammers [27 March 2018]

Hi, Can you block these 2 users? I have been trying for several days to no avail. KandiceQ57 and ChristenCantor The same material is being uploaded each evening.--Susan Irish 03:30, 27 March 2018 (UTC)

Floyd Sims [17 June 2018]

Hi, Just out of curiousity, how did you happen on Floyd?

Lynette--LynetteJester 02:11, 17 June 2018 (UTC)

Floyd Sims [16 June 2018]

Hi, Just out of curiousity, how did you happen on Floyd?

Lynette--LynetteJester 02:11, 17 June 2018 (UTC)

apologies for the duplicate post.

Hi. I am not related, if that is what you were wondering. I am a volunteer admin doing cleanup.
Pages for living persons are no longer allowed by WeRelate policy, but we used to allow pages to be created as long as the name was "living" and no details were included. Most of those pages have since been deleted. I am in the process of dealing with the last few thousand - either deleting the pages or filling in the information if the person is deceased. There used to be a page for Floyd's wife, saying she was living. I either assumed she was still living or searched and failed to find evidence of her death, so I deleted her page and linked his directly to his in-laws.
Let me know if you have any questions about the cleanup.--DataAnalyst 02:24, 17 June 2018 (UTC)

Oh I figured you weren't related, unless it was to the Beshea's in all its variant spellings. I don't remember adding her, but that doesn't mean much. I can recite whole Jesters families, but can't remember anyone living. And I didn't remember seeing Floyd here either. Yes, Floyd has passed, along with most of Peggy's family, I just added her sibs. But she is very much alive. Thank you.--LynetteJester 02:42, 17 June 2018 (UTC)

You're welcome. You did not add Floyd or the page for his wife. They were added in 2007 by user Manalone, who uploaded 1 or more GEDCOM's and has not been active on the site since.--DataAnalyst 02:50, 17 June 2018 (UTC)

Ray Tanner and B C Tanner [2 October 2018]

Hi, Janet,

I guess when I merged B C Tanner with Ray Tanner (to clear the duplicate spouses on the Family page), it was a change too many for the original poster, as I got a message from the original poster -- which actually provided a bit more information. I've tried to put the information back to what was intended, with an actual source for B C (Bergia C). My apologies for whatever confusion this has caused. The family information, if you are interested is: "Uncle BC, Aunt Ethel, and their children, BC jr and Shirley Ann. BC stands for Bergia Cowean. BC jr and Shirley Ann are also buried in Pinecrest Cemetery, Mobile AL". Gayel --GayelKnott 20:19, 1 October 2018 (UTC)

Hi. The problem was that Ethel's page had the wrong dates, and then I put in the wrong husband based on that. I should have checked a bit further, but I am trying to resolve thousands of pages for living individuals, so I didn't give it quite enough time. I noticed that there were still 2 pages for Bergia today, so I have merged them. I think it is correct now. I wasn't online yesterday, so I didn't see any of the intermediate stages. Thanks for all your work on WeRelate - we're improving the quality in spite of the occasional mistake.--DataAnalyst 11:58, 2 October 2018 (UTC)
Thanks for the clean up, Janet. What you are able to accomplish with so little information is amazing. Every once in a while I see you working away and am awed by your dedication. Gayel --GayelKnott 14:42, 2 October 2018 (UTC)

GedCom Review Complete but Will Not Import [27 November 2018]

I'd appreciate the help with this.I have checked everything as far as I can tell, but it still will not import.

have had trouble with the Hugh Thornton And Eliza Long match not having the Match box appear.

Thank you. Greg Thornton--Gregthornton 16:01, 27 November 2018 (UTC)

[28 November 2018]

Why did you remove marriage of Dortha Pearl Miller to William Howard Buckley? This is my aunt. It also removes their son, Christopher Howard Buckley?--Cjlray 11:58, 28 November 2018 (UTC)

[28 November 2018]

Why did you remove marriage of Dortha Pearl Miller to William Howard Buckley? This is my aunt. It also removes their son, Christopher Howard Buckley?--Cjlray 11:58, 28 November 2018 (UTC)

Hi. WeRelate policy does not allow pages for living individuals. It defines living individuals as anyone born within the last 110 years for whom no death info is entered. As an admin, I am expected to delete any page that meets this criteria, as did the page for William Howard Buckley (and hence for his marriage). In practice, I have been going the extra mile to attempt to find death info for those born over 80 or 90 years ago, but the amount of effort I put into that varies, since I am trying to clean up thousands of pages. In this case, I could not find death info, so I deleted the marriage page.
If William Howard Buckley is deceased and you can show some evidence for that (i.e., more than just "I think so"), please feel free to add a page for him and enter the information and source. Same for your cousin.
Thanks for checking in.--DataAnalyst 23:47, 28 November 2018 (UTC)

Pain Court [5 December 2018]

Hi Janet

Wikipedia has changed from Paincourt to Pain Court, but all our sources use Paincourt and the place description in WeRelate hasn't been changed either. Or, is this your next step?

I'm not as familiar with Kent County as I am with other parts of Ontario, but Paincourt rings a bigger bell than Pain Court.

Regards Pat --Goldenoldie 19:35, 5 December 2018 (UTC)

Hi. The place description should be updated the next time WeRelate updates from Wikipedia, which I believe happens every Sunday. The Wikipedia article claims that Paincourt is an incorrect spelling, and includes a picture of a plaque with the Pain Court spelling, so I assume that the correct spelling is, in fact, Pain Court. I hadn't thought about the sources - there are only 2 of them, and both refer to FamilySearch sources where the name of the place is given as Paincourt. So I am not quite sure what to do with them. Not a decision to make at the end of a long work day.--DataAnalyst 00:28, 6 December 2018 (UTC)

new user whom you recently posted about sources [13 February 2019]

The collection of data uploaded by this user has one of the highest concentrations of errors I have seen. No sources have been added for many pages uploaded by GEDCOM and many others the sources have been given as Ancestry Public Tree (whose source citation clearly has marked it as unreliable: proven by this user's GEDCOM). The sources citations that are there convey little information except an APID, or a link to Ancestry that amounts to little more than an ad for Ancestry, useless to anybody without a subscription. Intentions are entered as marriage, baptisms as births, last child's birth as deaths, many deaths turn out belong to other individuals with the same name. In the space of 11 minutes yesterday, I identified one incorrect husband and 2 incorrect sets of parents as I reviewed change notifications I had received ([1], [2], [3] - I am cleaning up some of pages as I go but the time it takes to track down sources is much longer than it takes to dump sourceless pages with a GEDCOM, and I can't keep up. So for some pages like this I merely remove the error after verifying it is wrong by a quick search and leave it for the future to fix). Alternate dates are entered that are largely identical to other alternates. In one case there were 4 alternate marriages dates in widely varying towns, one when the alleged wife was 1 year old and 2 others before she was 10, and the identified wife can be shown to have died before the recorded marriage date anyway so was not the correct wife merely a person with the same name (and the marriage date of the husband being readily available in published VRs, suggests there should be no reasons for alternates). --Jrich 15:07, 31 January 2019 (UTC)

Thanks for your feedback. I have contacted Dallan and another admin about it. Additions to existing pages originated from merging during the GEDCOM review process, before an admin would have approved the tree for upload, so I'm not sure what can be done. Waiting to see what Dallan has to say.--DataAnalyst 00:02, 1 February 2019 (UTC)
Sounds like review happens a little late, if changes are actually made to the system before the GEDCOM gets reviewed.
Well, one must presume this reflects the level of expertise of the user. I am annoyed to no end by this aspect of Internet genealogy, but frankly, I don't think they did anything procedurally wrong? It seems more like the combination of lack of experience + Ancestry protecting their assets + GEDCOM import = garbage in faster than it can be cleaned up. This is just a particularly clear illustration of everything that is wrong with GEDCOM upload. One suggestion would be to have GEDCOM upload erase Ancestry links so the GEDCOM appears unsourced during review and gets rejected. After all they are useless when they get into WeRelate unless the user takes the time to abstract what they say, and Ancestry doesn't tend to attract users who would go to that much trouble. Another suggestion would be to only allow very small GEDCOMs (i.e., like single family units) until given permission to do more. This would allow feedback that they are competent (or not), and to them that their data is or is not appropriate. Of course, the blanket suggestion would be to get rid of GEDCOM, but I seem to be in a minority on that. Realistically given the lack of resources, probably the best approach is to market the website better, i.e., we are looking for a few good genealogists, instead of come one, come all, give us your copied, your guessed, and your errors.
P.S. it is frustrating that the process of GEDCOM upload is not more instantaneous. I was notified of a change, fixed a problem, and two days later a further step in the upload effectively recreated the problem. (Step one loaded an incorrect death date for the wife based, I surmised on an incorrect marriage assumption but the marriage wasn't entered. So I entered the right marriage for the wife and erased the death date. Two days later, the wrong marriage gets added to the wife's page, so now she has two.) As a watcher I get notified when the change is made and have no idea what else is coming. I can only react to what I know. One would think the changes could be staged and then released when finally all ready, with the user notified of edit conflicts just like manual edits work. --Jrich 04:07, 1 February 2019 (UTC)
@Jrich Wonderful to read about the amount of effort you put in to this WR site.
I was wondering if the person uploading garbage has any idea?
Wouldn't it be better to communicate? After all, if they knew, they might want your guidance.
I know i did. When i first uploaded a small amount of data, Lidewij and others helped me correct my MyHeritage upload.
Ever since, i never used gedcom again, and agree with you that the only proper way of uploading is manual entrance.
Thx Ron [[[User:Woepwoep|woepwoep]] 07:10, 13 February 2019 (UTC)]
They should be notified of the changes and be able to see the couple of dozen errors I've fixed plus the way I've changed their posts to add sources. If they look at the page, they should notice that the citation of Ancestry Public Trees is called an unreliable source right in the citation. I shouldn't need to post. Any message I post would be less than complimentary or welcoming, so I post nothing. But really their problem is just their perspective. They see the tree from the viewpoint of a leaf, not from the viewpoint of the tree: what is this whole project trying to do and what should I do to make my post useful and integrated with others.
I think the user just does what Ancestry (in particular) teaches them to do. They see a fact they like, they click a button to attach it to their tree, and in a few days they build a tree dozens of generations deep. Nothing ever gives them any feedback about all the errors they make. They might not resubscribe if they realized half their tree they were getting from Ancestry was wrong. Now they want to expose their new-found knowledge to as many people as possible. They probably think they're done and have no plans to invest a lot of time in genealogy on an ongoing basis.
Dallan has said he does not want to scare people off by having policies requiring sources, etc. Even if they understand how to do sources, they may not have bothered to properly document them when they did their research. They may be scared off by the thought of re-typing their whole tree into WeRelate. So it falls on others to clean up their posts, or leave the website looking trashy. I think the answer is to have privilege levels where new users can enter up to say 1900 (age of grandparent, approximate limit of personal knowledge?), then you have to earn more privileges by taking tests showing you understand what WeRelate wants (which of course requires committing to a goal). GEDCOM use would be one of those higher privileges. But that implies software changes and coordinated effort. So nothing happens. The only encouraging thing is that once you enter good data on a page, hopefully it need not be done again (only a few people are so self-centered that they change good, sourced data to match their own errors, though more, like this user, simply enter their guesses as alternates). The importance of watching pages is not appreciated even by many long-time users. --Jrich 14:30, 13 February 2019 (UTC)
I appreciate your concerns. How to move forward @Jrich?
Warmest regards, Ron.
I think there were several suggestions embedded above on what could be done, depending on how thoroughly you want to approach this problem. But other than watching pages and fixing them, I don't really see anything that doesn't require at least minor software fixes. I suppose if there were a fairly clear enunciation of some goals and principles you could point new users to, one could post talk messages that appear to count for more than personal opinion, but the current policies invite people to upload GEDCOM (read: truck loads) of data with no requirements as to documentation. Is there some way, without software, to mark Ancestry Public Trees as a bad source so it causes the GEDCOM to be blocked? Or can we incorporate that into the review process?
This is a bigger problem than GEDCOM, however, GEDCOM simply magnifies it. There are other people out there entering pages manually with no sources, i.e., not using GEDCOM. I don't understand why anybody would think this is a useful contribution, unless they think the point of WeRelate is to enable their own self-expression. It certainly is not useful to anybody that understands collaboration. You can't collaborate without sources. If I can't find the source myself and don't have the same data, what am I to do? I can't assess the validity of the other data unless I know where it comes from. Then we need some understanding of quality of sources to come to the same conclusion about what is right.
So, the underlying problem if you want to be inclusive, is trying to allow a community with widely varying skills contribute to a common database in a coherent fashion. The answer has to be education and feedback that drives non-conforming users towards the desired practices. Which requires defining desired practices. I was encouraged recently by some efforts to update help pages, but it seems to been plagued by reflecting the desired practices of the writer rather than any community policy. Software changes to format data, to provide more templates (e.g., a source type of census with appropriately labeled fields to build consistent census citations), to add prompts and warnings that educate, warn, and slow down or block a user doing things the wrong way, could be a big help, but that isn't likely to happen. --Jrich 17:55, 13 February 2019 (UTC)

Quebec entries [4 May 2019]

Hi Janet

About a year ago after a few weeks of work on the topic, I gave up trying to update WeRelate's descriptions of Quebec places.

I found it very confusing. Many places that were geographically the same had two names, one based on local civil government and one based on the local church. Most of the sources I found were in French, and I studied French in high school more than 60 years ago when French as a language of Canada was not as important as it is today. Actually I was surprised how much I understood of the French text, but that is not to say I could explain it to other English speakers with even less knowledge of French than me.

The hardest section of Quebec I tackled was Montreal. Like London, England, it is made up of many communities that merged over the centuries. It was very hard to judge whether all these places should be retained as individual WR placenames (excessive in my estimation), or whether they should be merged into the civil entity in which they were located in 1900.

I am no longer looking at WR on a daily basis. Feel free to do what you like on Quebec placenames.

Regards Goldenoldie--Goldenoldie 13:53, 4 May 2019 (UTC)

Greater London as a place [4 May 2019]

Hi Janet

London, England and Greater London as they currently exist in WR are "unfinished business". Greater London was created in 1965 out of London and a number of other parishes, which were located in the counties of Middlesex, Surrey, Kent, Essex and Hertfordshire. Greater London was divided into metropolitan boroughs. The former London (1900-1965) was divided into municipal boroughs.

Subsidiaries of both places are listed under the headings

  • Area
  • Borough (metropolitan)
  • Borough (municipal)
  • Cemetery
  • Chapelry
  • City district
  • Civil parish
  • District
  • Extra parochial area
  • Former parish
  • Hamlet
  • Hundred
  • Inhabited place
  • Neighborhood
  • Parish
  • Parish (ancient)
  • Region
  • Registration district
  • Suburb
  • Urban district

Most of the headings were in existence when I started working on the page. At times I tried to reduce this list, but never managed to get it completed. The important ones are Borough (metropolitan), Borough (municipal), Cemetery and Registration District. Some of the others such as Civil parish and Parish (ancient) find their was into Place:London and Place:Greater London from their historical roots in the 19th century and beyond. Urban districts were used between 1894 and 1965 in places that were in the outlying counties at the time. Hundred should not have found its way into Greater London. But the others should really be grouped together under one description. I wanted to use Area, but I only got so far in the tidying process. Each of these places had to be checked out separately. (In my book, obtaining sources for places is as important as obtaining sources for people.) I wish there had not been so many possibilities to choose from.

In each of the boroughs I inspected (and I did not get to them all), I found myself tempted to inspect the trees that linked with them. Many had street addresses in the "Place" box and it was tempting but time-wasting to correct these. (In each case I copied the street address to the description box.)

Although I would have liked to, I have never dared do much on the City of London. The number of parishes, and former parishes, within it is very large. Tracing the merges of parishes is a very tricky procedure and one that could be prone to error.

To make a long story short, I am quite glad to see Stratford City and Canary Wharf disappear from the WR list.

Regards--Goldenoldie 15:05, 4 May 2019 (UTC)

Thanks and New Question [18 May 2019]

Thanks for fixing John Philip Mertz.

I have another issue. There's a profile on We Relate for Rebecca Mertz. Someone added a comment that says more or less "I doubt she was the d/o Peter and Catherine Mertz as some people believe".

I have come around to that same point of view. There were two Rebecca Mertz in that place at about that time. So I would like to discuss with whoever wrote that comment and see if by comparing notes we can make a solid case for who was who. The only two people watching that page are you and "Mlcd".

I know I can post a message on Rebecca's page but this seems way too complicated an issue -- there is no absolute proof one way or the other -- and in my opinion should be taken to email and then once a conclusion is reached, the essence of the conclusion can be posted. At least that's the way I like to work. So, you may have noticed, when I post things, I include my email. To encourage discussion of things.

But that doesn't seem to be the We Relate protocol. Not only do I not see any email for you or that other person, I don't even see how to send a message just to one person. Am I right, there is no way to do that?

So I guess this message will go somewhere and live for eternity on your system. Seems a cumbersome system to me.

What am I missing?


Oakey Mertz 12:13, 16 May 2019 (UTC)

dataanalyst will undoubtedly have additional good comments.
If you view a user's page, mlcd, for example, and click on the "more" menu on the left side of the page, there is an item that will allow you to "Email this user". This will only work with users willing to receive email (blue, not red, username). (However, I notice mlcd's last contribution was made 2007, which is very near the start of WeRelate, and nothing since. Nor has this user posted any response to various posts on their Talk page. So chances are you might not get an answer. In any event the comment does not appear to originate with this user.)
The typical WeRelate way of doing this interaction is to post on the Talk page. There are several reasons why this is superior to an email:
1) the discussion would be probably be useful to other persons interested in this person, some that won't even be WeRelate users until sometime in the future, and posting to the Talk page saves it for their benefit
2) a discussion on the Talk page may possibly allow other knowledgeable people to reply and provide input even if the one person is non-responsive.
3) truth is determined by facts, not by two people selecting one opinion over another. Whether there is a provable answer, or whether it is not provable either way, the facts supporting all viable cases should be shared with other readers until the information is found that makes one case impossible.
I am not familiar with this family. If I read the history correctly, the comment you mention was actually added by dataanalyst. Unfortunately, it does not do much to explain to a reader what the issues are, such as who the other candidates might be, or what facts appear to conflict with her marriage to Henry Tittle. Perhaps it is related to the reason why Family:Unknown Schnoe and Rebecca Martz (1) was removed as Rebecca's marriage? In order to make the page describe Henry Tittle's wife, a marriage associated with the daughter of Peter Mertz was removed? Often when marriages are shown with the husband's given name unknown, it is because the father's probate specifies the daughter's married name. I believe in 1845 Freeburg, where Peter died, was in Union County. Their probate records may be viewable at Family History Centers (FHL catalog entry), if Peter had a probate file. --Jrich 13:41, 16 May 2019 (UTC)

So I'll try it your way. I have posted a TALK on both Rebecca Mertz -- the one married to Jacob Schnee, the one married to Henry Tittle.

Now if this works, i.e. if anyone provides any useful follow-up, then I'll be the first to congratulate you all for having a service that may actually be an improvement on everything else out there. I like to TALK. My view is you can collect all the "facts" that are out there and you'll often just be confused. It is only through analysis -- often in collaboration with others -- that the "facts" can be melded into a coherent picture.

I keep my eye on all Mertz and Martz people on the big LDS family tree as well the Wiki Tree service and find-a-grave. My main interest is trying to eliminate all the many, many errors that have become "fact" about people named Mertz and Martz especially, plus a few others in my own family tree. But the problem is no one else ever wants to TALK. They don't want to hear all the "facts" that show that what they believe cannot be true, that they have mixed up two people of the same name, etc.

But it's not at all clear to me that this TALK feature is used by anyone else on WeRelate. Obviously I didn't check everyone profiled on WeRelate but I checked a few people I am interested in and know that the "Internet" generally has their facts wrong about them.

I checked John Kleckner (1750-1839), my ancestor. There's no TALK on his page, there should be. They have confused 2 or 3 different John Kleckners and merged them as one fellow. Their facts are all correct except some facts apply to John Kleckner who came to Hartley Township, Union County from New Jersey while other facts apply to John Kleckner who came to Mifflinburg, Union County, from Northampton County.

I checked Heinrich David Martz (1746-1822). (The Mertz name often became Martz when someone moved.) There's no TALK on his page, there should be. They merged a man named Heinrich Mertz who was baptized in Rockland Township 1 Jan 1750 and was born per that record 29 Jul 1749 -- so even their facts are misstated -- with a man named David Mertz (brother of my ancestor) who became David Martz when he moved to Northumberland County where he died in 1822. This composite person was invented by Allen Donald Tallman. With a great deal of effort, I got David fixed on find-a-grave but I have given up trying to get fixed the 500 Ancestry trees that have this composite man as if such a man existed.

I checked Johann Jacob Martz, again a merger of two people -- one was Heinrich's brother, the other was David's brother. No TALK. Ought to be.

Both these latter two were posted apparently by "Mlcd".

So your advice I take it would be for me to TALK on each of these people which would make clear to the world -- if anyone is paying attention -- that "Mlcd" wasn't a very thorough researcher, that "Mlcd" mostly just copied the errors of others with no real research to see if anything they were creating was accurate. I always try to contact such people directly and see if they can see the error of their ways. And not be so "public".

For now, I think I'll just sit tight and see what develops. I'm not sure WeRelate has sufficient critical mass or momentum that I should bother trying to correct all the problems. Am I wrong?

 .--Oakeymertz 22:35, 17 May 2019 (UTC)
Not all wrong, just being more involved than some other people.
I myself have entered about 21,000 people in my birth region - for the same reason as you, namely to stay away from just importing data that lie around on the internet. Best regards, Ron woepwoep 23:52, 17 May 2019 (UTC)
Besides the smallness of our user community, most people simply don't bother Talk'ing in the first place. If they have sources with authoritative evidence, and a page is unsourced and incorrect, they just fix it, and post their sources. It is not about the poster, it is about showing why one answer is right and others are wrong, with the goal that readers end up with the right answer. It is good to remember when working with wrong pages that somebody thinks it is right, and try to provide convincing evidence and analysis to show how it can be known what is right and what is wrong, not just for the poster, but also for the future reader who comes along thinking the same thing the poster thought. --Jrich 03:56, 18 May 2019 (UTC)


WeRelate excels when a number of contributors are interested in the same data and, through crowd sourcing, improve the quality of original data submissions. As Jrich says, people usually simply update what is there, providing sources or arguments for why it is better information. Talk pages are usually created when a new contributor comes along and thinks their data might be better but is not sure, or if they think something is wrong but are not sure how to fix it. Talk pages are also great for the kind of cross-person explanation that you provided on Rebecca Mertz's Talk page.

There are pockets of data (such as early New England) where I think WeRelate has the best data around, due both to crowd sourcing and the diligent work of a small group of contributors. Unfortunately, there are other areas where one contributor has uploaded a GEDCOM and no one has touched the data since, so all we get is what that one contributor had - and this ranges from excellent to garbage. A lot of garbage has been cleaned up by volunteers or removed by administrators, but a lot is still there.

I would encourage you to correct what you can, for the same reason you mentioned - if bad data is out there, it will keep getting copied. You can't do much about Ancestry Public Trees or RootsWeb WorldConnect trees, but you can fix WeRelate data. Even with a small user base here, I think its integration model (such that there aren't multiple versions of data for the same person) makes it an appealing source for others. And its format (sources, notes, narrative, talk page and links) makes it one of the best sites to explain common errors and how you have fixed them. For example, you can create separate pages for different people who are commonly merged together, and then link them with comments describing how you know they are separate individuals.

I am both a volunteer and an admin, and as such, I touch a lot of pages. I often don't have a depth of knowledge on pages I correct, so I might only make a small improvement without fixing bigger problems that are not immediately obvious. Occasionally I post questions on Talk pages, but before doing so, I check the activity of the contributor. (This is done by clicking their userid to get to their user page, and then clicking Contributions at the left.) If they haven't contributed for years, then they are unlikely to participate in a conversation, so I just update the page for the next person who might come along wanting to see/use the data (like you). In the case of the Mertz pages, I believe that I left the pages in better shape than they were when I found them, but obviously not perfect due to my limited research in the area.

I skimmed the Talk page you added for Rebecca Mertz (1) and it very nicely lays out your research. Thanks for that contribution. I would suggest that you add a note to her Person page as well, to expand on my note by indicating that you have a theory for who her father might be (and refer the reader to the Talk page for a more in-depth analysis). Feel free to replace/rewrite my comment as you see fit.

Thanks for your interest in WeRelate. I hope you decide to continue to improve the data here. Sorry for my slow response - I am dealing with the estate of a family member and not feeling all that sociable right now. But feel free to reach out - I'll get back to you eventually.--DataAnalyst 14:25, 18 May 2019 (UTC)

OK, I'll Take A More Active Role [20 May 2019]

So I believe based on the comments you (several of you) have given me that you are collectively trying to create something that maybe rises above the other similar things out there. And maybe WeRelate has some kind of management team or founders and you are one of them or in contact with them.

My niece married a man whose ancestry traces back to all those intermarried early New England families especially those from the Braintree/Milton, MA area. So I agree with you, WeRelate has really great, well sourced coverages of at least the people I know something about.

So for now, I think I will go fix the obvious errors I’m seeing on people of interest to me. And we’ll go from there.

Now I'm a newbie so you might think it quite presumptuous of me to give you my opinions on how better to do things but understand I am active on find-a-grave, Wiki Trees, and FamilySearch -- and I have strongly held opinions on what works and what doesn't, so call me presumptuous, here goes, I've been called worse.

So I used the Talk feature on the two Rebecca Mertz but on the latest problem I discovered, John Kleckner, instead I used the “Personal History” feature and posted something about the two John Kleckners that have been confused into one person on WeRelate. If you look up John Kleckner, you can read what I wrote and I'll use him as my example of what might work better and why I think so.

1.) The Facts of Disambiguation. I think every person on WeRelate should have a prominent narrative profile saying some very specific thing about this person that may differentiate this person from any other of the same or a similar name. Maybe they could be called the Anchor Facts.

The single biggest mistake made in genealogy, in my opinion, is people not thinking through that most names are not unique, even if we’re talking in the context of a geographic place and a specific timeframe. There were two adult John Kleckners in Union County, PA in the 1800-1830 period (and several more in other Pennsylvania counties). (As an aside, just to make this point, there were seven boys given the name Jacob Mertz born in Berks County, PA just in the one decade of the 1770’s. And three older Jacobs born there 1738-1755.)

The person who created John Kleckner, I think it is clear, was trying to create William Kleckner's father. Because William is the only descendant of John’s listed and then the tree branches out from William down many generations I suspect to whoever created it. Dwkiefer I guess.

But when I first looked at this John Kleckner, since almost all the posted facts pertain to a different John Kleckner than William's father, I really thought the obvious error was the name of John's wife. I hadn't yet noticed son William. So my first reaction was that I should change the name of John's wife and then I might have noticed the son and unattached him (I guess that can be done?) — but then, don't you see, I would be deleting the whole identity of the man Dwkiefer really wanted to profile, William's father. This kind of thing happens on FamilySearch all the time. People change enough of the facts about someone so the person morphs into someone else entirely and then it's a real mess. Just stating a different source and a different fact doesn’t accomplish anything, the starting point is which of several people of this name is this particular profile supposed to be?

Now DWkeifer may well have chosen to write his Anchor Facts of Disambiguation about John by only giving his birth and death date and burial in Mifflinburg (all of which pertain to the “other” John Kleckner) but it would be a place to start for someone else to come along (me) and say wait a minute that guy wasn’t William’s father.

So what I’m saying is TALK doesn’t get the job done because it is too hidden, you don’t see it and may not see that there is a TALK on this person. Personal History comes closer but I would put it up top, the first thing I see about the person and basically make it mandatory. Plus, I’d make it stand out.

2.) Now there's three surnames I watch really closely everywhere. Mertz (aka Martz), Hilbish (aka Hulpusch and Hollenbush, etc.) and Kleckner -- three ancestral families of mine where big mistakes have been made and keep getting propagated. Wiki has a really neat feature whereby I just list those names in my profile as ones I’m watching (they already know the alternate spellings) and I get a daily email summarizing the details of any changes to anyone of those names (and a few others I watch). From the email, I can one-click directly to the person to see the change that was made.

At WeRelate (as best I can tell), and at FamilySearch, I have to go to each and every person I want to keep an eye on and take some action to be notified. In your case there are not very many of any of those names so I could go "watch" all the existing ones but I still wouldn't know about new people who might get added.

Those are my two suggestions.

But I’ll also throw out a comment for your consideration. WeRelate and FamilySearch have a fully crowd sourced open system. Anyone can change anything at any time. Wiki has a designated profile manager but it still is a protocol where anyone can change anything, just the profile manager will get immediate notification and can easily just undo what was done, if they desire.

But the find-a-grave model is different. On find-a-grave, every memorial has an “owner” or someone who “maintains” it. Once a memorial is created, no one can change anything without the “owner’s" permission. It works great assuming the owner is willing to listen. So if some child is erroneously linked to the person, you make your case to the owner or “suggest” the appropriate edits, but they need approval(s) before any actual changes get made.

Now there are two back-up systems in place. If the problem is a simple thing like adding a birth date or linking a person to his/her spouse, if the “owner” takes no action in 21 days, the change just goes through.

And the second backup feature is having "people in charge", they call them the editors. If the “owner” is unresponsive or stubborn, I can make my case to the editors and they will step in and fix things.

The result in my opinion is that find-a-grave has the most accurate information out there and, perhaps more importantly, the least amount of total nonsense. Sure, there are some mistakes. A date is read wrong from a tombstone or a person is linked to someone they shouldn’t be linked to. But overall, it’s the best with the best chance of not devolving into a real mess.

And if you think about it, by the way, on find-a-grave the upfront Anchor Disambiguation profile is not really necessary since the memorial is specifically for a person buried in a very specific place with, let's say, a specific date (or year at least) of death. So there’s no confusion from the get-go of who we’re talking about.

So I know when WeRelate was founded, no doubt a lot of consideration was given as to whether to use the “open” model or the “owner” model and I suspect you might consider my two suggestions above but likely won’t change the model you use, which is why I made it a comment — food for thought — rather than a suggestion.

One question. Data Analyst said if there are two people who get confused with each other or might, they can be linked somehow. I couldn’t figure how I might do that. I’m talking about for example, John Kleckner. If I created the “other” John Kleckner — who was not related in any way to the existing one — how would I link them?--Oakeymertz 13:42, 19 May 2019 (UTC)

For linking pages, see Help on formatting: How do I create a link to another WeRelate page?. WeRelate also has a convention that prevents someone from merging 2 pages. See Help on merging: What to do when similar pages should not be merged. You can add the nomerge template to a Talk page manually as indicated on the Help page, or you can initiate a merge and select "Not a match", which automatically adds the nomerge template. The nomerge template can be manually removed so that a merge can go ahead, but the template is intended to at least make someone stop and think. I'd suggest adding notes after the nomerge template or referring the reader to the Person page for an explanation.--DataAnalyst 14:14, 20 May 2019 (UTC)
I know it's off-topic, but in response to the above statement, I'd counter that Find A Grave has reasonably accurate information if you only look at the pictures (assuming you can read the gravestone from the picture) and ignore the memorial page. No human record is ever going to be perfect, but memorial pages are known to report information contradicted by the actual gravestone [I found about 30 messages I have posted over the years to this effect, but some have been cleaned up since I posted, here's one where the age at death is misread, date of death is misread; memorial pages often contains personal research of the contributor, with no sources and not infrequently wrong [see Person:Reuben Hamilton (1) where the first memorial misreads the gravestone, and the second one, partially cleaned up now, originally reflected a source that was wrong (which, to its credit, it at least cited)]. Pages with no images are even worse, often assuming burial locations, etc. Unfortunately, of all the "primary sources", gravestones, to start with, are probably one of the least reliable. Many are erected by descendants after the fact, and have inexplicable errors. Age at death cannot be counted on. Colonial record keepers weren't very good about recording deaths, so gravestone can be extremely valuable, but one must be aware of the various pitfalls. --Jrich 16:24, 19 May 2019 (UTC)

I think we agree and have a similar viewpoint. I've found many many errors on find-a-grave over the years but I've gotten most of them cleaned up. And I've got someone to add a comment on one of those modern tombstones of some much older person that might say for example "his tombstone says he died in 1827 but he wrote is will in 1829, so 1829 is the better date." The point is the things I've gotten fixed for the most part have stayed fixed. Because the owner understood the fix. I've fixed errors on FamilySearch and inserted commentary (which almost no one ever reads) only to find someone else come along a month later and post the same nonsense I had just got rid of.

Great thoughts User:Oakeymertz
Whether one is right or wrong, doesn't matter as much as whether one is committed yes or no.
Thanks much for sharing.
woepwoep 10:42, 20 May 2019 (UTC)

Person:George Johnston (23) [2 June 2019]

Hi Janet

Many thanks for sorting this out. I'm going to add the parish because I saw it along with George, and the bit in the Gazetteer infers the family had been there for a number of generations.

My temptation is go on and add the Keith family who purchased the Caskiegen estate off the Johnstons and are well traced in Wikipedia.

/cheers, --Goldenoldie 15:12, 2 June 2019 (UTC)

Family:William Whitcomb and Dorothy Taylor (1) [6 July 2019]

Hi Janet Have you ever looked into this family? I just came across them due to the references to Essex. The birth and death places of the couple definitely look suspicious. Going back through William's line raises more question marks. Looks to me like a family born in the head of someone looking at One World Tree. What do you think?

regards, Pat --Goldenoldie 19:57, 5 July 2019 (UTC)

See here, for example. Apparently Hardwick, Shropshire, Gloucester, England, not Hardwick, Massachusetts. --Jrich 20:39, 5 July 2019 (UTC)

Hi, Pat
I don't think I've ever looked at this family. Obviously the place names are messed up. Even in the book Jrich linked to, there is an error in Dorothy's burial place (Hardwick, Massachusetts). It looks like the text was generated from a database and someone picked the wrong Hardwick for the burial. At any rate, I think it would be safe to change Dorothy's places to England. But it looks like the children might not all be from the same family. I can accept that maybe the parents were born in Shropshire and the children in London, but for some of the children to be born in Somerset, one in Essex and some in London seems a bit far-fetched. One World Tree was famous for conflating families, but it is hard to tell if it is One World Tree's fault this time, given that someone has published the tree this way. I think the book should be cited so at least people know to look there.--DataAnalyst 12:28, 6 July 2019 (UTC)

Dallan suggests ... [26 nov 2019]

See my Talk page Thx Ron--woepwoep 06:46, 26 November 2019 (UTC)

treviscoe, Cornwall [28 December 2019]

Hi I got your addition of Treviscoe. I shall add coords once I have a look at Google earth. The places in red for the wife in the family are directly South of Treviscoe, perhaps a mile or two. (source: UK road atlas). Forgive spelling please. Am writing on a tablet which is not reading my mind properly. Regards and happy New year. --Goldenoldie 10:09, 28 December 2019 (UTC)

Ory Haupert [23 March 2020]


Thanks for updating "Ory Haupert" and his siblings. After looking at your changes, I found a couple of other sources in my Legacy Program. I will get back to entering those "someday". I guess "Ory" was a nickname for Ora?

--White Creek 21:34, 23 March 2020 (UTC)

"I guess "Ory" was a nickname for Ora?" - I assume so--DataAnalyst 03:30, 24 March 2020 (UTC)

new user uploaded 2 gedcoms needing many edits [12 June 2020]

Hello Janet, New User 2BConnie has uploaded 2 gedcoms that contain many errors and lots of unuseable verbage that will need to be deleted manually. I am considering blocking this user from uploading anymore gedcoms. Do you have an opinion? --Susan Irish 00:01, 11 June 2020 (UTC)

I have an opinion. Yes. It is hard to tell what exactly happened between how her system stores sources and then formats those fields into a GEDCOM and exactly how WeRelate responds, but the net effect is definitely "unuseable verbage" that will simply need to be manually deleted. Citing a source like New England Historical and Genealogical Register with its 174 years of approx. 400 pages each year without giving a page number or article title, etc., is unuseable. It appears probably her data is simply a collection of other peoples GEDCOMS due to the numerous error messages and RINs found in the "unuseable verbage". Added alternate dates of the same value when specific dates already posted. Further, there has been no response to a posting on her talk page, any of the cleanup, or any of the corrections I have made. This is a poster child case for why GEDCOM upload should only be allowed to experienced users. --Jrich 02:48, 11 June 2020 (UTC)
Hi. I agree that she shouldn't be uploading any more GEDCOMs until issues are resolved. Some education might help, but given the state of this particular GEDCOM, it appears that maybe she should follow the practice other users have adopted of doing manual data entry and improving sources as she goes. Someone needs to tactfully suggest this. Is that something you can take on Susan? I have other irons in the fire right now and wouldn't be able to right away. Also, I see that she was allowed to upload data prior to 1750, which is supposed to be blocked for most users. I sent an email to Dallan about that. I'm not sure if the rules have changed. Thanks--DataAnalyst 16:22, 11 June 2020 (UTC)
At the moment the best I can do is to work at cleaning up some of the pages and adding sources where I can. I have never uploaded a GEDCOM nor participated in the GEDCOM review process so I do not understand how these really bad GEDCOMs are able to be uploaded, let alone 2 in a row. --Susan Irish 01:34, 12 June 2020 (UTC)

Number of person pages [2 October 2020]

Hello ! Can we change (update) this number (2,900,000 from 16 Aug 2018) ? ---> We have now 2,955,000)
Thanks !--Markus3 07:59, 24 June 2020 (UTC)

Hi. I was going to wait until we had 3,000,000, which will be another year or so. I'd rather not get into the 10,000s because a search result is misleading. It includes Talk pages. By my calculation, we have just over 2,947,000 Person pages, but if I post that, people might get confused.--DataAnalyst 15:55, 24 June 2020 (UTC)
Okay ! I forgot that the "Talk pages" had to be subtracted. That said, when I present Werelate to possible future French contributors and offer to participate, one of the many dissuasive arguments is that the progression of the files is far too slow. No update of the info for almost 2 years seems to them a neglect or numbness of the site. Marc ROUSSEL --Markus3 06:19, 25 June 2020 (UTC)
Okay. I updated the number of pages. It might still look like we are lagging in the count, because of search results. FYI - we hit 2,930,000 in Oct 2019 and 2,940,000 in May 2020. We've had an average growth of over 130 person pages a day over the last 2 weeks. We'd be growing faster if I weren't in the process of deleting pages for living individuals (a necessary task with an unfortunate impact on growth).--DataAnalyst 12:43, 25 June 2020 (UTC)
I should also mention that in addition to deleting pages for living individuals, I am updating pages so that I can avoid deleting them by showing that the person is deceased. Other volunteers are also adding value to the site by improving pages and merging duplicates. The volunteer base may be relatively small but is quite active in improving data.--DataAnalyst 12:47, 25 June 2020 (UTC)
Fine ! Thank you ! I had perfectly seen your important work of "cleaning" and updating. I also know that the number of volunteers is small. (.... for example, we are only two French-speaking contributors working on the French registers since spring 2013. ---> Without the regularity of the work of User: CTfrog, I think I would have given up Werelate). But the important thing is the reliability and credibility of the content. I would add that Werelate has the huge advantage of having a presentation and layout be clean and sober. The site is not invaded by garish colors, infantilizing gadgets like competing sites (WikiTree, Geni, etc.) which are real "gas factories" where everything mixes up. - --Markus3 07:15, 26 June 2020 (UTC)
"But the important thing is the reliability and credibility of the content." I agree with this. I think this is a value that WeRelate brings, at least on some pages, that I haven't seen in many places of bigger numbers. A small number of single-user trees can be found where the owner values quality, and implements it, but most multi-user sites have inconsistent quality and presumably are scared of implementing active quality control that might drive users away.
Why is WeRelate different? It is sort of an unspoken cultural attitude here. Some of it probably a result of the unified tree because one must share pages with others, and if one doesn't justify postings, they will probably be changed. Some of it is probably a reflection that the most active users have been here a long time. They have probably seen how others can contribute important things that they did not know, so are not happy with a view-only website. They may have at times branched out beyond just their personal tree and learned how to view things more objectively. They probably have been fooled often enough to have developed habits that tend towards good data.
I would like to see more features trying to encourage/educate people in this direction, as I think it is the only way for WeRelate to excel. The numbers game is lost. Software changes could encourage certain practices more. As an example, time-consuming popups that warn about lack of sources, providing pointers to educational help pages for those that don't know, and rewarding good practice with a streamlined process. But in the absence of programming resources, being active watchers and providing critical review of changes is the next best thing. --Jrich 21:19, 26 June 2020 (UTC)

adding persons as we speak :-) woepwoep 14:06, 25 June 2020 (UTC)

"include talk" checkbox implemented ... It's fine ! Thank you !
Une idée peut-être pour améliorer l'accès pratique (par des visiteurs occasionnels) à cette information sur le nombre de fiches "personne" ... mais seulement si ce n'est pas trop de travail de programmation. Est-il possible de récupérer ce nombre pour l'inclure automatiquement en bas de la page d'accueil ?
(google translate) --> Perhaps an idea to improve the practical access (by occasional visitors) to this information on the number of "person" files ... but only if it is not too much programming work. Is it possible to retrieve this number to automatically include it at the bottom of the home page? - Marc Roussel - --Markus3 07:36, 2 October 2020 (UTC)

Hi. You can add a suggestion to the Suggestions list. However, there are about 75 suggestions already, and I wouldn't prioritize this one at this time. I am updating the count manually every time it hits another 10,000 people.--DataAnalyst 15:09, 2 October 2020 (UTC)

WeRelate policy on living persons [26 July 2020]

Bonjour Janet, Je sais tout cela vraiment parfaitement depuis que j'ai découvert et testé Werelate (2008-2010) et y participe (2013). Le seul problème est le temps que prennent la consultation des données et leur saisie. Je travaille en particulier sur l'implantation géographique des patronymes, l'évolution des professions et l'exode rural au 19ème siècle. J'habite dans la région et depuis 30 ans j'ai visité aussi de nombreux cimetières et quelques mairies. J'ai pu parfois rencontrer certains habitants qui m'ont donné des informations rapides mais seulement orales. S'il te plait, ne détruis pas mes fiches ! Autre chose ! Peux-tu supprimer Place:Rubembré, Somme, France ? Merci !

Hello Janet, I know all this really perfectly since I discovered and tested Werelate (2008-2010) and participate in it (2013). The only problem is the time taken to view the data and enter it. I work in particular on the geographical implantation of surnames, the evolution of professions and the rural exodus in the 19th century. I live in the region and for 30 years I have also visited many cemeteries and some town halls. I was sometimes able to meet certain inhabitants who gave me quick information but only oral information. Please don't destroy my files! Something else ! Can you delete Place:Rubembré, Somme, France ? Thank you ! ---Markus3 16:10, 26 July 2020 (UTC)

Sandbox FTE replacement [26 August 2020]

Hi, Janet, I tried out the early code on sandbox.WR, even though I've never been much of an FTE user. I only noticed one anomaly, which turned out to probably be nothing. I was browsing various pages in the TestTree and clicking prev and next on the list. At one point, the page that had been displayed changed to a different one when I pressed prev, which I thought odd. Found I could repeat that if I navigated to Person:Olive Benedict (e.g. by a click on a Family:Charles Kilborn and Olive Benedict link), and then pressed prev. The Olive page would be replaced by a recently viewed page. I checked to see if Person:Olive wasn't on TestTree, but the "Trees" link in the sidebar said it was. Finally I noticed that Olive's sidebar had a "Watch" link instead of a "Unwatch" link. I don't think I had unwatched it. Anyway I turned on Watch, and Olive remained in view after a next or prev. So the behavior was more reasonable with that knowledge.

I assume the various <anglebracketed> things (and some & lt ; stuff) I saw was just scaffolding bits and was expected. So overall things look like they work, but as I said I'm not much of an FTE user. 23:58, 21 August 2020 (UTC)

I've been playing in the sandbox for an hour or two -- and Wow. Yes, your version looks a little different, not being Flash, but the functionality appears to be spot-on. Trying things out, I see it even disappears a name from the list on the left when you re-save the edited page to a different tree -- which is exactly what I want to be able to do. I.e., as I work my way down a list of a hundred or so new pages in the "TEMP" tree, the list gets shorter as I clean them up and reassign them to their permanent tree. The Flash version had ceased doing that particular thing a while back, so that's great! I would definitely have no problem using your version to get my work done. Thank you very much for doing this.

I guess it's just my psychology -- I'm word-oriented rather than graphically-oriented -- but I've always greatly preferred lists as a method for doing something. I've never had much use for all those fancy charts genealogy programs want to offer you, either. You say your coding skills are limited, but they're far beyond mine, anyway. I've kind of gotten away from the whole Flash-replacement discussion at Watercooler because I wasn't really following all the points that were being made. So, does it look like we're going to end up with a viable GEDCOM upload process, even if it's a more limited version thn what we had? --MikeTalk 09:13, 26 August 2020

Thanks for the feedback. I'm glad the list will do the trick. I'll get Dallan to implement it as soon as I fix up the formatting a bit and make sure it is thoroughly tested - maybe next week. As for GEDCOM, Dallan has committed to developing a replacement and plans to start in October. --DataAnalyst 12:52, 26 August 2020 (UTC)

Searching for families [30 September 2020]

I noticed Families has been added to the Search menu. This is very useful, as usually this is the easiest way to find a specific person. Thank you. --Jrich 18:34, 30 September 2020 (UTC)

You're welcome. I really wanted it myself, too.--DataAnalyst 18:45, 30 September 2020 (UTC)

former used website for Dutch geneology [1 October 2020]

As I get to see older recorded data, I noticed that many Frisian family entries carry the "Genlias" data When I get to work with the data of that particular family, I delete the "Genlias" entry and write the original version (as seen in "Tresoar"). The reason being that might end up like "Genlias" and we are left with no data at all. Sorry if these sentences are not correctly formulated. Kind regards --Beatrijs 02:24, 1 October 2020 (UTC)

[3 October 2020]

Hi Janet

I've got a problem with four Sources found in "What links here" for towns in Lancashire, England.

  • Source:Bispham (Fylde), Lancashire, England. Census Returns for Bispham, 1841-1891
  • Source:Bispham (Fylde), Lancashire, England. Parish Registers, 1599-1900
  • Source:Bispham (Fylde), Lancashire, England. Registers of the Parish Church of Bispham in the County of Lancaster
  • Source:Fishwick, Henry. History of the Parish of Bispham (Fylde), in the County of Lancaster

There are two parishes named Bispham in Lancashire, and from the original descriptions provided for these sources they could refer to either one. I have marked them as Bispham (Fylde) because that is the parish I came to first in a 2020 revision of descriptions of the parishes of Lancashire. Now I have moved down the county somewhat and am working on the area between Liverpool and Manchester and this is where Bispham (West Lancashire) is located.

I have added a note under "Usage tips" on each source, but I would far rather correct the titles if I could do so condidently. The sources probably come from the old Family History Library Catalog which probably has been updated since FamilySearch came into being. Have you any suggestions as to how I could go about this? I don't have any idea where the old catalog might now be found.

I am glad to see you are tackling problems that have been hiding in the "Suggestion Box" for many a year. I haven't used the copy ability you have added to sources on Person and Family pages yet, but, like you, I try to sort out other people's family trees from time to time, and this will be a wonderful tool to speed up the process. I have always kept a scratchpad software program on my screen, but even that can be time-consuming when there are 10 or so children.

Keep up the good work

Regards, Pat --Goldenoldie 12:08, 2 October 2020 (UTC)

Hi. I don't know how to find the old catalogue. I assume you know where to find the current Catalogue - which I searched for Bispham. I don't know if this is helpful at all, as I only searched but didn't look any more closely. I've been coding all day and my brain is numb! Take care.--DataAnalyst 23:28, 3 October 2020 (UTC)

Keffers [24 October 2020]

Hi Janet I see you have taken a break from coding. I discovered the Keffers in 2013 when I was taking a break from sorting out Ontario geography. Thay are not my family, but I was aware of Marian Keffer and her work with the Ontario Genealogical Society in its early days. I felt the Canadian branch of the family as presented in WR deserved a bit of "flesh on the bones" that early Canadian censuses might provide. It kept me busy for a couple of weeks, and taught me something about presentation of genealogies.

In the first half of the 1800s Markham-Vaughan area was very agricultural, with many families still living on the lots doled out to first settlers. My Arnold ancestors were among them, living at Lot 44 on the Markham side of Yonge Street just south of Richmond Hill. By tracing them I discovered that my great-great grandmother, Margaret (nee Phillips) had a sister, Mary Charlotte, married to George Quantz, living on Markham Concession 2, with a Lot number indicating that the two families lived perhaps within three miles of each other--something the sisters were probably glad of. (The friendship between the families went on into the 20th century according to a cousin of mine.) Then, in tracing the Keffers I discovered George Quantz standing up for 2 or 3 of his sisters when they married Keffer boys. It just shows how small the community was.

I hope you haven't found too many obvious errors in my Keffer contributions. It was a fairly early foray into serious genealogical searching.

/cheers, Pat --Goldenoldie 08:09, 24 October 2020 (UTC)

Hi, Pat
I stumbled across the Keffers in my never-ending quest to remove pages for living people. In this case, I was able to find death info for several people and thus preserve their pages. On to the next person with no birth date. Take care.--DataAnalyst 15:09, 24 October 2020 (UTC)

Spammers yesterday [3 November 2020]

Hello ! Can you block these users, plesase ? KellyeUnwin5, MarthaHarriet, WillardCurry, MariettaYne, AlbertinaMulvany - Thanks ! --Markus3 08:19, 3 November 2020 (UTC)

Done. Thanks for letting us know.--DataAnalyst 13:07, 3 November 2020 (UTC)

fte glitch? [4 November 2020]

I am posting here for your review because this is not really a problem, it just works funny. I noticed the following because I got dis-oriented navigating a family tree and saw this unexpected result. It probably is not a sequence of steps that would typically happen, hence not really a problem.

When I click on Family Tree on a Family page, there is a dot that represents the page I am looking at. If I click on the "Family" link of that dot, it opens the page I am looking at in the FTE subwindow. I end up looking at the Family page, and embedded inside the FTE subwindow, the same page is displayed.

If I click on the Family link for a different Family Page, it works as expected, opening the different page, replacing the page I was looking at.

Maybe this is intended behavior, but it seems like the link to the current Family page should either be inactive (maybe the dot for the current Family Page should have a different appearance, like a star or the kind of teardrop seen on maps?), or just cause a refresh (appears to be what happens when you click on the link for the current Person page when you invoke FTE from a Person page).

Here may offer a small tree that makes this relatively easy to see. It is basically one person with a Family page for the parents (this link) and another for his own marriage. If you click on the Family link for the parents in FTE, you should see what I describe. If you click on the Family link for his own marriage, you go to a different page. Once you are on his own marriage, that dot acts as I describe, while the dot for his parents takes you back to the original page.

Hope that is clear. --Jrich 16:28, 4 November 2020 (UTC)

That's just really weird. I doubt it is intended behavior. This tree functionality has existed for some time and I doubt my changes impacted this behavior. The code is quite complex and I don't know if I'd be able to spot the defect. I think Dallan might have to tackle this - but as you say, it might not be that critical. But maybe some day when I'm bored or needing a real challenge, I'll see if I can find the defect. Thanks for drawing it to my attention.--DataAnalyst 17:21, 4 November 2020 (UTC)

Up/date [5 November 2020]

hi Janet, i think there is something going wrong with the latest greatest up/date. i change okt for Oct and then okt is still written see for example Janna Bloemena thx Ron woepwoep 02:04, 5 November 2020 (UTC)

If you have your language setting set to Netherlands, it is displaying the date in Dutch. For me, it displays as 5 Oct 1823, which is how it is stored in the database. The changes means that WeRelate can read a date in another language, convert it to English for storage, but then also convert back to your language setting for display. Let me know if your language setting isn't Netherlands. Thanks--DataAnalyst 03:02, 5 November 2020 (UTC)
Ok got it. I have now set language to English so it displays the way i entered the month. Thanks !

Thanks [24 November 2020]

It is clear everybody is sending you bugs, etc. But I hope it is not discouraging, and thanks, it is so exciting to actually have a hope of seeing things fixed. It suggests a major reassessment of the viability of this site (not that I was planning on leaving but it is nice not to think one is walking up a dead end). Thank you for taking this on. --Jrich 02:52, 23 November 2020 (UTC)

You're welcome. I wasn't sure it would work out, but I have been enjoying the challenge. I, too, want to keep the site viable, given how many hours I have devoted to cleaning up and adding detail to pages.--DataAnalyst 15:16, 23 November 2020 (UTC)

I too am very happy with your efforts to make things better. Do let me know if i can be of any help, and how, for example by letting me know which pages to follow so that i am informed of your changes. Thanks Ron woepwoep 04:42, 24 November 2020 (UTC)

Hi. Thanks. The best page to watch is the WeRelate:Roadmap. Note that due to other commitments, I'm taking a short break from coding. I might do some in December, but it might be January before I get back into it.--DataAnalyst 14:53, 24 November 2020 (UTC)

110 years [10 December 2020]

Hi Janet,

I record people who are in the official registry ( so there is no reason for the 110 years limit on WR. I used to mark the death date as dot (.) but this no longer works. Can you help me find an alternative?

Thanks Ron woepwoep 06:27, 8 December 2020 (UTC)

example is Gerrit Abbink--woepwoep 06:28, 8 December 2020 (UTC)

Hi, Ron.

The official WeRelate policy is set at 110 years and does not make exceptions by country. If you can't find a death date, I would ask you to refrain from creating pages for these people until after 110 years have passed.

There is a valid reason for WeRelate's 110 year limit regardless of the publication policies of individual countries. While the information you are entering is publicly available, adding it to WeRelate might make it easier to find or make family relationships (e.g., siblings, nieces/nephews) easier to determine, adding to the risk of identity theft or fraud. It is the elderly who need the most protection, as they are often the most vulnerable. Dallan and the original advisors set the limit at 110 years (a fairly standard limit for genealogy sites, recognizing of course that a few people live even longer than that) and that will be enforced. (Of course, if you have or can find the death date, you are welcome to create the page.) - Janet --DataAnalyst 15:42, 9 December 2020 (UTC)

Thank you Janet.
I found that this registry ( also maintains standards
The following documents cannot be found online and cannot be viewed:
Birth certificates younger than 100 years
Marriage certificates and marital attachments under the age of 75
Death certificates younger than 50 years old
So there is the difference between 100 and 110 years.
I could not find a death record for Gerrit Abbink but since he was born in 1912 he might indeed still live.
Best regards, Ron.

Fehr Jacob John - 24.ged Imported Successfully [11 December 2020]

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 15:35, 11 December 2020 (UTC)

minor issue [19 December 2020]

I edited a page with a bad date, and properly saw a yellow warning message showing the previous format. It turns out, however, that I ended up deleting the whole fact for various reasons. The yellow warning message stayed on the page and the next fact moved up to take the place of the deleted one. It appeared to be connected to the remaining fact now (though comparison of the message makes it clear the dates don't agree). So not significant. and if these messages are going away this problem goes away. If they are staying though. the software may want to check if there is an attached warning when the Remove function is selected for a fact. Just a head up, since I suspect this is a rare case. --Jrich 06:24, 19 December 2020 (UTC)

Thanks - I noticed that myself the other day and wondered if it was worth fixing. I'll add it to my list.

Can I try the new reviewer? [19 December 2020]

Hi -

I've been slowing getting through a gedcom I uploaded on Dec. 5 - GroupIA.ged, I think is what it's called. Can I get a link to try the new reviewer?

Thanks! --Amelia 18:42, 19 December 2020 (UTC)

Link added to Amelia's talk page--DataAnalyst 20:45, 19 December 2020 (UTC)

Frances Munday record [21 December 2020]

Thanks for fixing up that record!

William Loughner--Loughner 16:07, 20 December 2020 (UTC)

You're welcome.--DataAnalyst 14:30, 21 December 2020 (UTC)

Frances Weymouth [21 December 2020]

I really resent your dropping of Sherrie Wright's name from this page. The only reason this page exists, is because Sherrie was a professional genealogist, who was a personal friend of Frances, and before both of them died, she found where her ancestry went back to a Lauer family from Chicago. If this treatment of data continues, why should I ever bother to add anymore data to WeRelate, or even keep my postings here?

--White Creek 22:22, 21 December 2020 (UTC)

Jrich's response on Frances Weymouth's Talk page explains my thought process as well. I would suggest that if you wish to cite someone who is not well known in genealogical circles, you should create a MySource page and give her credentials. Otherwise, the citation means nothing to anyone else.--DataAnalyst 01:50, 22 December 2020 (UTC)

Tweak copy/paste source function: [24 December 2020]


It took a while to get from the email advising me "amendments had been made" to finding your notes on the topic made today. Would it be possible to give us a link to the page where the amendments are instead of to the Introduction to Suggestions?

I had a chance to really put the copy-paste function to work about a week ago. As well as spreading the details of three census years through a family of ten, I also discovered it was useful in re-ordering an individual's sources into chronological order.

I am sure I will be using it again soon, but I am now back to improving place pages.

Hope you have a good Christmas despite whatever lockdown regulations you are coping with. --Goldenoldie 19:44, 24 December 2020 (UTC)

Hi, Pat
I suggest you watch the Roadmap page.
Happy Christmas to you, too. We have our daughter home with us, so that makes it a good Christmas in spite of restrictions.--DataAnalyst 20:03, 24 December 2020 (UTC)

East End of London [5 January 2021]

Nice to get rid of a place that was never really there.

/cheers, --Goldenoldie 20:42, 5 January 2021 (UTC)

Thank You! [18 January 2021]

Hi Janet,

This is just a note to thank you for steeping-up to the challenge of doing things for WeRelate that Dallan no longer has time and attention for!

Decades ago I worked in software support so I have a deep appreciation of what you are doing for the community. In the late 1970s I began migrating from software engineering into systems architecture and hardware engineering, though I have remained a power user of a lot of software tools. So if this were FORTRAN or Assembly or a hardware design language I could chip-in and help. As things stand all I can do is cheer you on from the sidelines. --Jhamstra 17:58, 18 January 2021 (UTC)

You're welcome. Gives me some variety in my retirement. --DataAnalyst 21:47, 18 January 2021 (UTC)

Changes to Selina Redding (27 Jan 2021) [29 January 2021]

Your changes to Selina Redding made me do some more researching on this family. The censuses for her parents and siblings have now been added for decades 1861-1881. Selina's sister Catherine was duplicated as Kate. Obviously, Richard lost the farm he inherited and took his family "down the road" and across the county border to Ashley Green. I have always taken an interest in this broad family because, in the late 1970's, one of the descendents was an immediate neighbour in the village I still live in. /cheers, --Goldenoldie 11:19, 29 January 2021 (UTC)

John Hicks of Hempstead [5 March 2021]

Thanks for adding the nomerge. I should have thought of that myself. It does give me the opportunity to echo the thanks for the work you're putting in to our benefit.--jaques1724 18:03, 5 March 2021 (UTC)

dateless marriages [21 March 2021]

I suspect you are working on this? See Person:Hannah Dow (4). I did an edit with several changes and it did not fix the issue. No marriage is shown to account for the blank marriage in the infobox. --Jrich 16:39, 21 March 2021 (UTC)

Yes, this is due to the change that was implemented last night. The fix is coded - Dallan will implement it when he has time (usually late in the day).--DataAnalyst 18:24, 21 March 2021 (UTC)
Fixed--DataAnalyst 21:35, 21 March 2021 (UTC)

Your Edit [30 April 2021]

Hi, I don’t know why you changed Raphael’s father. His father is Noah. Mars--Mars 22:37, 30 April 2021 (UTC)

Hi. Well, maybe I broke the family at the wrong place. Noah's father was Nacham, with a birth year of 1880. So there is an error in the lineage, and I guessed it was at Raphael, but maybe it is at Noah instead. If that is the case, you can fix this by merging the new parents of Raphael with Noah and his wife (let me know if you need help with this), but you also have to unlink Noah from his father. And then maybe you want to check the other children of Noah to make sure they are in the correct generation. Maybe Nacham was a son of Noah instead of the other way around. Do you have independent sources for this, because WikiTree (as cited) is clearly wrong.--DataAnalyst 22:43, 30 April 2021 (UTC)
Oh, I just noticed that you changed the data in WikiTree, to say Nacham was born about 1832. I have changed the data in WeRelate accordingly (including doing the merge I mentioned above). Please check to make sure the family is as you believe it should be. Thanks--DataAnalyst 22:56, 30 April 2021 (UTC)

Yes. I believe it is correct now.--Mars 23:15, 30 April 2021 (UTC)

Spam [10 May 2021]

Hello ! Please ... see RBI’s COVID-19 relief policies for MSME in India - --Markus3 14:31, 10 May 2021 (UTC)

Thanks, Markus. I deleted the page and blocked the user.--DataAnalyst 14:34, 10 May 2021 (UTC)

Dead link ? [16 May 2021]

Hello Janet ! Please, see this person page (and family) : Person:Désiré Coret (2) ... The references field is sending to "nothing" ! Is this "link/information" to fix, to remain or to remove ? - --Markus3 07:36, 16 May 2021 (UTC)

Your Edit of May 20, 2021 [21 May 2021]

Hello, Please tell me why you removed Michael and Zippe Shmushkovitzs' daughter Jeanne (Shmushkovitz) Moskowitz Dorfman from my tree. Mars--Mars 03:35, 21 May 2021 (UTC)

Hi. I was removing pages for people who might be living. Based on the birth date of her grandfather, it is possible she was born within the last 110 years. On 4 May, I added this message to her page: "Hi. This person could have been born in the last 110 years. If you have more information on when she lived, could you please enter it. Same for her descendants. Otherwise, their pages will have to be deleted to ensure that WeRelate doesn't have pages for living individuals. Thanks." I thought that 2 weeks was sufficient notice for you to respond. If you have a death date for her, or a birth date prior to 1912 (with a source), I can restore the page and you can add that information.--DataAnalyst 12:55, 21 May 2021 (UTC)

Help fixing a Source page renaming error [30 May 2021]

Hi DA - Could you take a look at the history of this Source page and let me know what you think would be the best way to repair the renaming error that was done last summer? I don't believe that it is as simple as just removing the "redirect", since the content was already moved over, but I can't remember exactly how best to handle it. I haven't done one in so long, and I don't want to mess it up. :)
Thank you, --cos1776 18:58, 30 May 2021 (UTC)

Hi. I copied all the data back into the original page (expect the publication date which wasn't known anyway) and deleted the renamed page. Nothing linked to the renamed page so all we lost was a bit of history of how the page was originally created by WeRelate agents. I don't see a problem with that.--DataAnalyst 19:34, 30 May 2021 (UTC)
Looks good. Thank you. --cos1776 20:09, 30 May 2021 (UTC)

Mistake on Dirk Arnoldus De Beer [6 June 2021]

Good Day,

I accidentally uploaded a personal narrative/diary onto the incorrect Dirk De Beer. I have uploaded it to the correct Dirk (who lived during the World War II), but now there is a duplication. Could you please help me to delete the image on the incorrect Dirk Arnoldus De Beer?

Many thanks!--KrissyD 18:38, 5 June 2021 (UTC)

Hi. Based on the other images in the page for Dirk De Beer (2) (1923-2011), I assume he is the correct one for this image, and you want to delete the image file for Dirk De Beer (3) (1890-1966). Please confirm and I will delete the image file.--DataAnalyst 18:50, 5 June 2021 (UTC)

Hi there, you’re correct, thanks. Please do go ahead and delete the picture on Dirk Arnoldus De Beer (Dirk De Beer (3)).

Thanks so much!--KrissyD 17:26, 6 June 2021 (UTC)

Done. You're welcome.--DataAnalyst 17:35, 6 June 2021 (UTC)

Living People [10 June 2021]

Thank you for your message. I will try to find DODs for people posted but, if not, feel free to delete per the standards. Thank you for your contribution to this site. rc--Rebekah Carlisle 17:56, 10 June 2021 (UTC)

Duplicate family pages? [10 July 2021]

I stumbled on these two family pages; which I believe to be duplicate. If you agree; perhaps you can merge. I don't know how. 20:10, 10 July 2021 (UTC)

Done. Thanks for pointing this out. Another user you can ask to merge duplicates is Gayle Knott; he monitors and merges duplicates.--DataAnalyst 20:22, 10 July 2021 (UTC) - OneWorldTree [14 July 2021]

Hello, Janet ! I'm trying to verify some person pages (France, Les Biards (Manche), 1680-1740). The initial contributor is no more activ and his sources are of poor quality. I found the original records on the "Archives Départementales". May I remove all these bad and approximative sources ( ? ---> family Theberge or Teberge. - Thanks ! Marc Roussel ---Markus3 14:08, 14 July 2021 (UTC)

Yes, where you have better sources.--DataAnalyst 14:22, 14 July 2021 (UTC)
Ok - Merci ! --Markus3 14:28, 14 July 2021 (UTC)
Hello - Markus directed me to this question. I agree with Janet's answer above. While we're on the topic of these types of "sources", I thought we should also discuss the recent removal of the note "not considered a reliable source" in the title field of a couple of these sources about a week or two ago ( Public Member Trees, etc.). I notice that Markus' source above still has a note in the title. I have been traveling, so I did not bring it up at the time, but I disagree with the removal of these notes. There is some history there on their origin. If I recall correctly, we added notes like these a few years back after years of discussion on the site and within the Overview Committee about how to encourage folks to provide better source citations and discourage so much straight copying and pasting of online trees without the underlying sources. I thought it provided a good warning to readers that the information on that WR page still needed better proof. What are your thoughts on their use? --cos1776 15:08, 14 July 2021 (UTC)
I have mixed feelings about Ancestry Public Trees. For older info, I agree that they are unreliable. However, for the 20th and 21st centuries, they are actually reasonably reliable - in fact, I find them more reliable than some of the WeRelate records I'm trying to find death dates for. In some cases, they are the only place you can find a death date (because someone from the family has posted it) - the official records either aren't public yet or not transcribed online yet. If you want to reinstate the warning, I'd reword it to reflect this reality. Maybe encourage people to replace the source with primary records when available.
As for OneWorldTree - it is even more complicated. It often reflects solid research and some trees or parts of trees are accurate. However, the automated merging was a disaster and you can't always tell when records were inappropriately merged, conflating individuals. Maybe a caution specific to that problem (as well as cautioning about older records) is more appropriate than just a general condemnation of its unreliability.--DataAnalyst 15:19, 14 July 2021 (UTC)
Oh, and you are probably already aware that I add Ancestry Public Trees as a source quite often as I am cleaning up pages for potentially living individuals. Consider it an assembly-line process - the priority is to get death dates now; better sources can be added later. By adding links to Ancestry Public Trees, the better sources are often easily available for adding later.
I have much, much stronger feelings that Cos on this. I don't believe adding unreliable data based on a bad source is an improvement so I don't believe an assembly line process using a bad source makes WeRelate better. Leave the bad posting as it was, the quality of the page will inform readers exactly how reliable it is. Clean it up and you will fool readers into thinking someone cared about the page. Few of these sources tell how they arrive at their conclusions and without sources the data is worthless. If the person is well-known perhaps there is wide agreement on their facts and those who copy the first source they find are likely to get the right answer. But it is exactly the hard cases where these types of sources are going to substitute wild and misleading guesses, identify the wrong person, and of course, they present this speculation as facts because they can't stand saying unknown. Unsourced data can't be verified, can't be argued against by someone who doubts it, or analyzed when competing sources arise. If those sources do provide information on where they get their information, that is what is important, not the data. While we want to know the data, it does no good to know something if we can't tell that it is the right data. (Recent data is possibly more likely to be correct since universal education means people have written records possibly compiled with first- and secod-hand input, and as a side-effect of privacy concerns, the fact that there is less "official" data available to check against it. But at the same time, people tend to exhibit more ownership of their grandparents, etc., and assume they don't need to provide proof, instead of looking at it from a reader's standpoint. Before about 1900, however, in general, those sources are abysmal, a waste of time, and a distraction.) --Jrich 16:42, 14 July 2021 (UTC)

Changing parent names [21 July 2021]

Thank you. It is fixed.--Mars 13:13, 21 July 2021 (UTC)

"Family:Thomas Dossett and Elizabeth Aldridge (1)" [26 July 2021]

I note your addition of a christening date for the son of this couple. Omitting an event year is an error that the original contributor (who has brought us thousands of entries) does a great deal. Frustrating. Many of the entries occurred in places very close to where I live (hence my interest), but the info has been published as booklets for individual parishes by the local family history society and, frankly, I can't afford them. If a census might help, I often seek help from Ancestry.

Another topic. If a placename is edited by using a phrase in brackets, the capitalized words in brackets get changed to lower case. I quite often try to distinguish one placename from another by its location, i.e. "Smalltown (near Largetown), county, country". These always end up "Smalltown (near largetown), county, country". Is there any change you could make to the program to stop this from happening?

Many thanks, --Goldenoldie 11:43, 26 July 2021 (UTC)

French place : Rouen --> Canteleu [26 July 2021]

Hello ! Please, excuse my very bad english (I must use GoogleTraduction). I continue to try cleaning the places of the records of France. I come back to a big problem noticed as soon as I officially arrived on Werelate (April 2013). This concerns an abusive and systematic automatic transformation : Rouen (large city) -> Canteleu (small locality). Can you explain to me the reason of this modification (especially appeared during a "merging", I think). Does this still occur ? Here are some examples :

The correction work will be important :

- Thanks - --Markus3 16:05, 26 July 2021 (UTC)

Hi. This is a support question. Please post it to the Support page (on the Help menu). Dallan might know the answer to this question - I don't.--DataAnalyst 17:39, 26 July 2021 (UTC)

No place, no date [31 August 2021]

Hello ! Please, see Family:Russell Rowley and Helen Rocher (1) - --Markus3 08:16, 31 August 2021 (UTC)

Thanks. The contributor hasn't been active in years, so I deleted the pages since they might be living.--DataAnalyst 12:45, 31 August 2021 (UTC)

German placenaming problem [2 September 2021]

Hi Janet

I have written to Ron and explained how I go about these problems.

Basically I redirect all small places into the parishes they are part of. Parishes are the basis for making register entries whether the parishes are church-based or civil. In North America I would use townships and incorporated towns and cities.

/cheers, --Goldenoldie 15:25, 1 September 2021 (UTC)

Thanks - Janet
Thank you both you superstars !!!
woepwoep 02:55, 2 September 2021 (UTC)

Edits to page [5 September 2021]


I noticed you made some changes to the page and was wondering if you could let me know why Alexander Brown has been removed? Is this just due to the lack of sources? Alexander was my Grandfather’s brother.

Thank you

Gordon--Gmcgough 21:16, 5 September 2021 (UTC)

Hi. WeRelate doesn't allow pages for anyone born in the last 110 years unless there is a valid death date. Since there wasn't one, I deleted the page. If you have a valid death date, the page can be restored and you can enter the death date (with source). You might need my help to restore the page - if you have a death date and need help, please let me know. Or you can just create a new page.--DataAnalyst 22:49, 5 September 2021 (UTC)

J Vollema deleted by you yesterday [19 September 2021]

Should read Dirkje Vollema, marriage details are okay. I reentered all details. Regards and have a nice day --Beatrijs 03:07, 19 September 2021 (UTC)

Thanks, Beatrijs.--DataAnalyst 12:50, 19 September 2021 (UTC)

Thanks for cleaning up pages I added [16 October 2021]

Not sure if I've said this before, but thanks very much for cleaning up pages I added, especially ones who may be living. I'll try to be more careful not to add living people in future!--jocelyn_K_B 08:21, 16 October 2021 (UTC)

You're welcome.--DataAnalyst 12:39, 16 October 2

writing "fixed" behind the corrected data [9 November 2021]

Hallo Janet. I have a problem indicating the word "fixed". Is there a special way to do that? Thanks --Beatrijs 21:54, 9 November 2021 (UTC)

Hi. I'm not sure exactly what problem you are having, but if it is that "fixed" doesn't show up on the same line, be sure to put it before the "<br>", which indicates a line break.
If that's not the problem, let me know what exactly the issue is. Thanks--DataAnalyst 22:08, 9 November 2021 (UTC)

Child born before parents [12 November 2021]

Hi Janet,

I found this entry [Johanna Teppers] where the parents were born after the child.

Maybe this calls for yet another algorithm to improve quality?

Thanks, Ron woepwoep 05:31, 12 November 2021 (UTC)

You're right. I already have a program that identifies this type of problem. However, there are thousands of pages that look like they are attached to the wrong parents (as Johanna was until I fixed her page this morning) when the real problem is that one of the pages has a date typo (e.g., 1869 when it should be 1769). The first thing to do is to fix the typos so that the report of problems between generations is more accurate and more manageable. If I remember correctly, the last time I ran the report it listed more than 50,000 problems that suggest an incorrect relationship. I suspect that number will drop significantly once we get all the "events out of order" problems fixed.
I and a few other volunteers have been fixing "events out of order" at the rate of about 50 pages a week. There are over 1600 pages left to fix, although only about 400 pages have discrepancies of more than 10 years. So maybe by January or February it will be worth running the report of inter-generational date problems.
You can help with fixing typos. Go to page WeRelate:Data_Quality_Tasks/Events_out_of_order, read the instructions (not all problems are typos and some problems take more research and work to fix than others), and then click on the link to get to the list of pages with problems. I will update the list later today.--DataAnalyst 14:42, 12 November 2021 (UTC)

Somerset and Devon BMB records [15 December 2021]

Hi Janet

I'm glad you think this kind of note is helpful. And thanks, also, for your Christmas greetings.

I've been working on a parish by parish re-edit of Somerset since September. A huge county with far too many parishes (average size in 2011 census about 200 people!) Got to the final tidying up today. Another day or two and it will be complete. Yippee!

The county has yielded too many people who were married before they were born, etc. Mostly before 1500.

/cheers, and Merry Christmas to you.

Pat (--Goldenoldie 21:37, 15 December 2021 (UTC))

Proofreading of surname list needed [19 December 2021]

Hello - I've filled the surname list gap you identified for Source:Biographical Record of Whiteside County, Illinois. Thanks. --ceyockey 18:59, 19 December 2021 (UTC)

P.S. I'm in my third decade in IT now, currently as a business analyst.

Hi. Good to "meet" you and glad that you decided to stick around. The sources need work and I'm glad someone is active on that.
I retired from IT about 2 years ago - just in time for COVID to keep me at home pretty much all the time - so glad I don't have to go to a workplace and wear a mask all day! But I know that most of my former colleagues started working from home shortly after the pandemic was declared. I have lots of time now to fix WeRelate data and learn some new things so that I can enhance it.--DataAnalyst 19:37, 19 December 2021 (UTC)

Request to add century check [18 January 2022]

hi Janet,

is it possible that you add a basic check to adding a person or family page, for example that entry gives an error when death arrives before birth ( wrong century ) ?

thx Ron woepwoep 15:38, 18 January 2022 (UTC)

Hi. I added that check a little while ago, but decided not to prevent the page from being saved when this occurs. The way that the edit function works, you only get the message when you select "Show preview" or when you re-edit the page. I'm considering changing it so that you can't save the page if there is an event more than 5 years before the birth, but I have to be careful, because there are legitimate cases where there are conflicting sources saying the birth was one year and the baptism the year before.--DataAnalyst 15:42, 18 January 2022 (UTC)

A place in Oise, France [29 January 2022]

Hello ! I have a problem with Person:Abel Navarre (1). I don't understand ... This place exists : Place:Moulin-sous-Touvent, Oise, France. Thanks ! - --Markus3 09:42, 29 January 2022 (UTC)

I see that it has to do with capitalization. WeRelate is changing the "sous" to "Sous" on the person page. I don't know why, but I will be doing other work on place pages next month and should have a chance to figure out why. I'm afraid you'll have to wait for a solution.--DataAnalyst 12:47, 29 January 2022 (UTC)
OK - Merci ! ---Markus3 13:10, 29 January 2022 (UTC)

How to assert that a person was born before their parents were married? [19 February 2022]

See for example Anton. On his birth certificate it says "Opmerking: Wettiging en erkenning" which means "Note: Legitimation and Recognition"

Looking for a template or some other solution to assert that the child was born before the parents got married, so your excellent report will pick it up and not throw an error.

thx Ron woepwoep 08:07, 3 February 2022 (UTC)

I've been thinking along the same lines. I need more time to think about this in the context of other requirements, but right now I'm working on a different priority. In the meantime, you'll have to keep track of which records you've already checked so you can go back and add the new template once it is developed.--DataAnalyst 12:39, 3 February 2022 (UTC)
i encountered a family where 8 children were born before the parents agreed to marry and acknowledge the children.
a solution would be greatly appreciated
thx Ron woepwoep 21:49, 4 February 2022 (UTC)
This is the family.
Can you please re-run the report and publish the results on my talk page?
Thanks, Ron woepwoep 07:02, 13 February 2022 (UTC)
Hi, Ron. I'll do the new report tomorrow. The file I use for reporting was created before your latest changes, so I want to wait for the next one.--DataAnalyst 14:48, 13 February 2022 (UTC)
So I have a rather different take on this whole topic. I would maintain that marriage is a cultural/religious institution (I am married for almost 48 years now). There are societies where children are married. There are societies where nobody is married. The only consistency check that makes sense for marriage dates is whether both spouses were alive.
Regarding birth dates, as long as the ages of the parents were biologically feasible we should not try to enforce consistency checks. It so happens that I was biologically capable of procreation before my 12th birthday (though it would have been a serious blunder). It so happens that there is at least one record of a girl giving birth before her 10th birthday. There are millions of unmarried teenage parents. I would suggest that if the mother was at least 10 and the father at least 11 there should be no reason to flag a potential inconsistency. Why create special templates to assert facts that may be uncommon in our culture but not uncommon in other times or places? FYI - Scholars estimate that the Virgin Mary was about 14 to 15 when she gave birth, regardless of whether it was a miracle. There are historical records of princes royal siring offspring by their mid teens (in or out of wedlock). There are historical records of girls being married (or not) and having children in their early teens. Ditto for women in their 60s and men who were centenarians. I see little benefit to what you are trying to do here.
The foregoing does not mean that in reconstructing family histories, one should ignore the pragmatics of marrying and raising families when trying to resolve discrepancies among sources. I have done this when reconstructing my Newton family lineage. But trying to automate these checks can itself be fraught with errors. If it was biologically possible then sometime somewhere it probably happened. --Jhamstra 23:48, 4 February 2022 (UTC)
No enforcement is being suggested. Just a report to help users find and correct typos and other errors. The template Ron is waiting for would allow the user to specify that the situation is, in fact, not an error and thus should no longer be reported (just like the nomerge template prevents potential duplicates from continuing to be reported). If and when this report is operationalized, I'll take more care with the terminology. I usually use the term anomaly rather than error.--DataAnalyst 17:26, 5 February 2022 (UTC)
@Janet just a suggestion. Can you add a template without a body? The body could be implementated at a later time. It is just abou t the signal that the person born is indeed a child from the parents later acknowledging the child. Thx Ron woepwoep 22:36, 8 February 2022 (UTC)
OK - I've created a template for you to try out. Note that it expects you to enter both the date you verified the data and your user id. My expectation is that the template would be placed in the description field of the birth event - but that could change as this functionality matures. See Person:Johanna Ludema (1) for an example of usage.--DataAnalyst 23:35, 8 February 2022 (UTC)
I agree with Jhamstra. The report should be changed to check age of parents when child is born; not compare marriage to birth dates; then no template needed. There is NO reason to HIGHLIGHT this situation with a template. 17:26, 12 February 2022 (UTC)

I don't agree that this shouldn't be reported. The report identifies situations where the family construction could be incorrect - children attributed to the incorrect marriage - which encourages research to fix records. There are also situations where one of the dates is incorrect - I just fixed a marriage date (Family:Hubert Baker and Kathryn Mabus (1)) that was off by a decade, which I wouldn't have noticed without the report. There are certainly many situations in which children were actually born before the parents were married, but probably even more where the data is incorrect. And if the data is incorrect, it might be the child's birth date that is wrong, which is why I'm checking in the first place - to monitor for potentially living people.

As for whether or not there should be a template - it was requested so that the report could exclude verified situations, but it also answers a question (and could save a lot of time) for the next researcher who comes along and thinks the children might be in the wrong marriage. Of course, this should really be addressed with sources and notes, which should be added regardless of a template. This might not be necessary for cultures where birth before the parents' marriage was not uncommon, but that's not the majority of WeRelate data.--DataAnalyst 18:38, 12 February 2022 (UTC)

Hopefully usage of template will not be "required" when this situation is properly documented with sources. However; if the template is "required" to reduce number of items on your report; then how about this -- the template is added to person to be excluded from your report -- but the template is enclosed in HTML comment so the situation is not actually visibly reported on the person page -- will your report still recognize the template is there? I hereby make a request for this feature. 15:40, 14 February 2022 (UTC)
That's a possibility, but I don't plan to determine the long-term solution for at least another couple of months. For now, while Woepwoep is working through his issues, it is probably easier for him if the template is visible. Woepwoep asked me to give him his results from my report, but it is not ready for general use yet (not even Beta testing).--DataAnalyst 16:45, 16 February 2022 (UTC)
The template helps me to find out if there are errors. Two findings so far:
One is that most if not all records mention some Dutch word like Erkenning or Geecht or Wettiging.
Two is that in most cases where the mother or father is younger than 13 or died a year earlier than the child was born, it is because i use the word ABT to specify a yet unknown birth date of either parent. In most cases this is ABT correct, user repaired one or two from ABT to EST, perhaps that is better syntax, i don't know.
Best regards, Ron woepwoep 06:20, 19 February 2022 (UTC)
When marriage date is known and age of partner is given, then use Abt. When marriage date is known, but age is not given, then make an educated guess (perhaps 25 years) and use Est. 13:36, 19 February 2022 (UTC)
Thanks for this pointer. Please do not hesitate to inform me further. I am not unwilling to learn, just ignorant of principles like the one you just taught me. Thanks much, Ron woepwoep 14:17, 19 February 2022 (UTC)
Robert Charles Anderson, in The Great Migration series, used the thumb rule that in the absence of any clarifying data, during the American Colonial period, men were estimated to have married at 25, women at 20. This would obviously vary depending on geographic area and time period of the marriage.--jaques1724 23:10, 19 February 2022 (UTC)

2 points [12 May 2022]

Hi Janet !

1) Are these "user pages" to be deleted (spammers ?) : User:Laticiagibson, User:Pamcompany, User:Digitalmarketingagency

2) The home page is to be updated (total person pages --> more as 3011000

Thanks - Merci ! - --Markus3 16:56, 7 March 2022 (UTC)

Done. Thanks, Marc--DataAnalyst 17:44, 7 March 2022 (UTC)
Hello, Janet ! A new spammer ---> User:GourmetTradingCo - --Markus3 06:18, 12 May 2022 (UTC)
One more ---> User:Instauaevisa - --Markus3 08:38, 12 May 2022 (UTC)
Done--DataAnalyst 12:20, 12 May 2022 (UTC)

Thanks for the typo fix in year of birth [7 March 2022] --ceyockey 01:36, 8 March 2022 (UTC)

Elizabeth Parkhurst [11 March 2022]

I understand you are cleaning up data, and I appreciate the motivation, but if good sources are not used, it is not clear anything better is being produced.

This is an ambiguous case, but as a general rule, I seriously doubt all reports of people of extreme age unless there is a contemporary record. You cited [4], not exactly a quality source. It claims to have two sources for the death date. One is the History of Martha's Vineyard by Banks, which says [5] "The date of her death is unknown." The other source is Find A Grave which has no image but says "Massachusetts, Town Death Records, 1620-1850, Elizabeth Merrey died 28 Jan 1732 and was buried in Tisbury." The VRs of Tisbury say the lady who died this date was age 36 so clearly a different person, and obviously it is not the same date that the memorial page shows. So how is this relevant? Yet no source for the 1727 date is given, it is simply asserted with no gravestone image to prove it. So we are left wondering where did that 1727 date come from? Further, Joseph's son Samuel d. 6 Oct 1727 (Tisbury VRs, p. 232)!!!!!!

I could probably follow around some of the people doing similar cleanup and fix things on every page they touch after they are done, because they are looking at sloppy pages done with sloppy research and they are doing corrections that don't require any sources or any thought, and so leave all the mistakes, just prettified. But at least badly incorrect pages are obvious, such as Elizabeth being given the death date of Joseph's first wife, a date prior to her second marriage, which makes it clear work is needed on that page. --Jrich 22:52, 9 March 2022 (UTC)

P.S. Dukes County deed Vol. 1, p. 141 mentions Elizabeth as Joseph's now wife, in 1689. Apparently their probate records were lost. This is the latest mention I found of her in my quick search. --Jrich 22:58, 9 March 2022 (UTC)
Please @Jrich have mercy. woepwoep 01:07, 10 March 2022 (UTC)
If there is a specific complaint, please make it. I think you can check the points made and see that I just stated what I found. I may have erred in identifying the two sources cited, it actually appears one was the Find a Grave memorial, and the other was an index of the Find a Grave memorial, i.e., the same source twice, but I don't use that website very often due to its lack of consistent quality and so didn't understand correctly. They did not cite Banks as a source for the death date, they just cited him for other data, and ignored what he said about the death date.
This wasn't meant to be a complaint about a single bad transaction that many people could and would have made. This was a discussion about a general issue that I see developing in the approach to fixing lists of problems. It also wasn't meant to be particularly judgmental, since 95+% people would have made the same error too (though I believe I am dealing with someone not in the 95% group, and so I may have been a little more detailed in my counter-points because this issue was somewhat subtle). But having myself at various times while at WeRelate adopted the goal of fixing this type of error, or that type of error, I know that one gets overwhelmed by the numbers of errors that exist, and in a desire to make progress, one often takes shortcuts, figuring half a result is better than what is there. Yet, I am trying to show, it may not be. The primary goal has to be: to be as correct as possible, and nothing else. That is my idea of data quality. So, again, not to be judgmental, but to illustrate how the research was hurried, the great age claimed in this case should demand good sources. Relying on a source that gives sources without trying to confirm what evidence those sources give is trusting a un-vetted poster. Also I suppose, not respecting Jacobus' rule to study a whole family though that is very time-consuming. Sometimes the evidence allows you to take shortcuts. Here pursuing the cited sources still yielded no concrete evidence that the death date was correct, just assertions on the Internet. Learning more about the family presented a fact that suggests confusion at work.
We are here to present data for future readers and if mature, it should let future readers know why the data is thought to be true, not just that we copied it from the Internet or in a book. That is, after all, probably exactly what the original poster probably did. We need to do better than that to cleanup pages. As a person whose work at WeRelate is primarily to correct bad genealogy, I would actually prefer pages be horrible and obviously wrong, than to be half-way cleaned up and yet still wrong. Perhaps it would sufficient, instead of clearing items off various error reports, to simply flag the bad pages, until somebody that can do a deep dive bothers to research them. That would also allow people that want something to investigate to easily find useful things to pursue. --Jrich 03:44, 10 March 2022 (UTC)
Thanks for your comments. I didn't notice her age until I had saved the page, at which point I was also skeptical of the death place. I promptly went to check at Find A Grave, which happened to be down at the time. I checked the NEHGR article cited for her christening date (Oct 1914), which at least confirmed that Elizabeth Parkhurst, the daughter of George Parkhurst, was also the wife of Joseph Merry. At that point, I was called away and didn't have a chance to follow up for the remainder of the day. But thanks for reminding me of unfinished business because it might have fallen off my radar by this morning, and thanks also for discovering the source of the 1727 date, which saves me a bit of work. I've found many many cases where a date that originally had a qualifier (e.g., "before") got the qualifier dropped somewhere along the line, which might have happened here (or it may have just been sloppy data entry). I'm going to simply remove the death info with a comment that hopefully will discourage others from adding it back.--DataAnalyst 12:42, 10 March 2022 (UTC)
Perfect. I didn't mean to start a big fuss and apologize if overly direct. --Jrich 17:00, 10 March 2022 (UTC)
Dear @Jrich, i have no complaint over your work here at WR. On the contrary, you explain in your post here that your standards are sky-high.
WR is about collaborating people. People make mistakes. Your post here is for educational purposes, i understand this and thank you for doing so.
Mercy is not about being right, it is about having patience.
I asked the teacher to have mercy.
Best regards, Ron woepwoep 04:17, 11 March 2022 (UTC)

Incorrect use of alt_fact - question mark? [16 March 2022]

Hi - I've responded at Person talk:Mary Stewart (140) as it's a "local" query - until it's not :-) . Regards --ceyockey 00:58, 17 March 2022 (UTC)

P.S. I notice there isn't an analog of wikipedia:Ping and it's variants and synonyms here on WeRelate ... unless there is and I've not run across it (I did go looking through Category:Communications templates briefly to no avail).

Good Catch [19 March 2022]

Thanks for catching that I had the wrong generation of Klaas van der Valk. I might have noticed for myself except I transitioned to working on my Ancestry tree because the AlleFriezen search engine was down. The irony is that a marriage connected to the wrong generation of Klaas van der Valk is what caught my eye and got me working on this family in the first place. And this means I still don't know whether Klaas yemes van der Valk had a first wife. --pkeegstra 13:42, 19 March 2022 (UTC)

You're welcome. This came up in a report I run offline checking for intergenerational date anomalies. Next step will be to make the results available through the Wiki, but that might take another few months since Dallan and I are working on something else right now. And I sure know what it is like to fix one thing and make a new mistake :) --DataAnalyst 14:38, 19 March 2022 (UTC)

Oops! [28 March 2022]

Well this is at least the second time you have caught one of my dates entered in the wrong century. This is a bit embarrassing. Seriously, thanks for cleaning up some of our little messes. --Jhamstra 01:59, 26 March 2022 (UTC)

You're welcome.--DataAnalyst 12:31, 26 March 2022 (UTC)
Nice! So these reports by Janet are an asset? woepwoep 20:56, 26 March 2022 (UTC)
They are definitely an asset. I've had a few of my wrong centuries fixed too. Usually it's the death date because all the other dates you have typed into a page are from an earlier century. I think earlier discussion was on fixing those errors. Just to give an overly simple example: page has no sources, birth in 1900s, death in 1800s, nothing else. Wrong to guess which date is correct. Maybe a typo, maybe interchanged, maybe both wrong, from different people, etc. Needs work to find a reliable source. Sometimes easy, sometimes not. I know most users are inactive, but flag the pages (perhaps add a template that puts them into a category) and those of us that are active can help. At a minimum, if the act of flagging an error were to notify those watching the page, I am sure everybody would welcome the chance to clean up our own errors. --Jrich 22:03, 26 March 2022 (UTC)
Thx @Jrich. I was seeking an answer from an expert so we can record this (FAQ). My own approach, for the region that i feel responsible for and capable of, in fact, that i was born into and chose to represent, is to not only lookup the error for the person or family page, but to use the error page as an anchor to review the whole family, from marriage to birth of children, their marriages, their deaths, and then sometimes even one or more of the ancestor lines of their parents and some spouses of the children. Which is mostly adding new information. woepwoep 00:33, 28 March 2022 (UTC)
Interesting to see the unexpected discussion tiggered by my simple Thank You note. In the cases where Janet's script caught my century errors, other facts and sources on the page made the typo and the correct century glaringly (embarrassingly) obvious. In these cases it is less work to correct the century than to flag it for someone else to come back and fix it later. --Jhamstra 04:18, 28 March 2022 (UTC)

Help:Place pages has been changed (1 Apr 2022) [1 April 2022]

Hi Janet

I've been looking through the FAQ that was reproduced following your answer with regard to the timeout error. As you know I do a lot of work on places for WeRelate, mostly for places from the UK.

Early on I realized there were articles in Wikipedia that needed some alterations to fit with the needs of family historians and genealogists. However, Wikipedia usually provides a format that is tempting to follow. For this reason I always head my text with the sentence:

the following text is based on an article in [[wikipedia:---|Wikipedia]] and use the {{wikipedia-notice|---}} at the end of the page.

The Wikipedia author may be dealing solely with present-day facts, while we try to base our facts around the place hierarchy that was in use in 1900. In the UK there were major changes in 1974 (including counties changing their names or combining with each other) and since then "unitary authorities" have come into fashion replacing the historic and earlier administrative counties altogether. Naturally, our users will depend on sources written at an earlier time and provide different placenames. I do my best to discuss these changes on the place pages and fill in the "Alt names", "Located in", "Also located in" (for county changes) and "See also" (for places between the county and the specific parish). The Description field on Person pages is also useful here, particularly for phrases like "of London".

English counties are divided and then subdivided into a fantastic number of places. I have tried to reduce this by making a parish the smallest of places discussed. Sources were produced at the parish level so hamlets, chapelries, settlements, etc. are treated with a #redirect[[Place:their parish, etc]]. If the subordinate places have some importance, a paragraph is devoted to them within the article.

Places that are redirected (hamlets, etc, as well as variations in spelling of the parish) appear under "Alt names" automatically. (I wish the word "source" did not always come up in this field. It does not always fit the remainder of the explanation.) You won't like this one, but I have removed hyphens from all placenames with redirects--they get in the way and take time to correct, e.g. "St. Martin's-in-the-Fields" (which was a parish as well as just a church).

I gather "Research tips" into a template and copy the template for each parish within a county (usually).

I don't know whether you will like or loathe the way I have been tackling places over the past 5 or 6 years. I am now working again on the North Riding of Yorkshire--one of the very first areas I worked on--amazing what I have learned and what I have found where to learn during that time! I am pretty well housebound because of having to care for a mentally disabled daughter and my own arthritis, but WR keeps my 82 year old brain alive!

Regards, Pat --Goldenoldie 11:50, 1 April 2022 (UTC)

New Data Quality Issues pages [18 May 2022]

Hi Janet

I have realized I didn't thank you for looking at the problem with lists that do not go up to the end of the alphabet. Life has been very hectic lately and computer sessions have changed from hours to minutes. But the washing is now out on the line and my disabled daughter has had her breakfast and the morning visit from the carer. So, before, I get to work on regular place descriptions for WR, thanks a lot.

--Goldenoldie 11:20, 18 May 2022 (UTC)

You're very welcome. I'm glad you reported the problem when you did - it helped me decide on next steps and I'm glad to have solved the problem. Thanks for all you do for WeRelate as well, and take care.--DataAnalyst 12:47, 18 May 2022 (UTC)

Removing Sources needed template [19 May 2022]

I'm curious re: this recent edit. I understand that you are implementing a recent round of style conventions, but why remove the sources needed template on a page with no sources? I recall a lot of back and forth when the template was first introduced, but I thought the resulting outcome was in favor of using it. Has that changed?
Thanks, --cos1776 18:13, 18 May 2022 (UTC)

There were comments some time ago about the template being overused and therefore not useful. It sounded to me like others have given up on bothering using the list of pages that the template is on, because there is too much noise. I think they had hoped the template would be used for situations in which people were claiming facts that might be disputed. I missed the initial discussion, so I don't know what the idea was at the time, but I can see that no one has followed up on the many pages on which you have added the template, so it does seem consistent with the idea that no one bothers using the list anymore.
It is possible through reporting to discover pages without sources (or only FTW and GED sources), and some day I will likely do that and post a list.--DataAnalyst 18:20, 18 May 2022 (UTC)
I thought the purpose of the template was two-fold. There was the list it generates, which I agree is not used as the originators had hoped. But, if I recall, there was also the anticipated benefit of adding a "sign" on the page itself to hopefully encourage the original poster or other readers to improve the quality of the page. I don't think this has worked out quite as well as intended either, but there might be value in showing readers that someone has flagged the page for improvement. I'm ok either way (use it or not), but if it is no longer allowed and is being removed, there should be some announcement or guidance to that effect. Otherwise, I think we are just going in circles. --cos1776 18:59, 18 May 2022 (UTC)
"there should be some announcement or guidance to that effect". I think this is a minimum, would prefer to see a discussion first. It the template is true and the page hasn't changed, then I see no reason for its removal. Depending on how peripheral a page is to my current effort, I may find sources, or I may mark it this way so I can quickly get back to what I was doing. In terms of reporting, I might actually wish its presence was reported to users to give them feedback how collaborative they are being. --Jrich 21:42, 18 May 2022 (UTC)

So, I guess I overstepped in removing the template. My understanding was that the liberal use of the template, especially on pages with a single watcher who left WeRelate years ago, meant that the value of the template was significantly diluted. Of course, now that users can filter "What Links Here" to their watchlist, using the template as Jrich mentioned, as a reminder to come back and add sources, makes sense. I'll stop removing the template.--DataAnalyst 02:07, 19 May 2022 (UTC)

I think you misunderstood me. I should probably stay silent here, but I use it to remind other people, not me. Yes potentially the category is a place to go to find good pages to clean up. But I use it to cut down on my frustration when certain users had/have a habit of creating pages with no sources, or less often, to flag pages as questionable that I don't care to spend time investigating enough to feel I can use the Questionable template. For people that appear to be trying most of the time to do good work, I will usually try to do research. But in general, using no sources is the antithesis of collaborating: you are not helping anybody understand how you got to the data you posted, you are forcing them to guess at and redo all your research just to return to the data that is there. And that's assuming the data is right, while no sources is one of the best predictors it will probably be wrong.
I also note that wikipedia does something similar when their pages appear underdocumented: wikipedia:Template:Unreferenced and wikipedia:Template:Unreferenced section. --Jrich 03:20, 19 May 2022 (UTC)
  • Personally, I think that some 'references needed' template should be added by a bot to any and all pages lacking any Sources. I am not thinking that a blurb on the so-tagged page needs to be added; people who add unsourced material are unlikely to take it upon themselves to seek out and add sources. Further, anyone visiting the page will see immediately that there are no sources. The tagging should be more for content cleanup operations in my opinion. --ceyockey 02:12, 20 May 2022 (UTC)
There are two types of people that don't add sources. One group are those that don't realize. Some of these will benefit from having it indicated that it is desired that sources are added. These are the ones I want to reach. Some will throw up their hands and leave. If they aren't using sources, every page they add just makes more work for those that care about data quality. The second group are the incorrigibles. They will ignore it. But my experience is that without feedback, none of these people will change. So it all comes down to whether you value pages with no sources... I personally have spent too much time on pages where I can't even identify who the page is talking about because there is so little detail to conclusively match them to records with the same name. I can find records, but I can't tell if the same name means I found the person. --Jrich 02:42, 20 May 2022 (UTC)

Why here ? [5 June 2022]

Hello ! Is this really useful ? --> MySource:Wobbitt/Source (8) --> MySource:Wobbitt/Source (6) - --Markus3 07:35, 5 June 2022 (UTC)

No. I've removed links to the sources. I suspect they exist because marriages didn't use to show up on the person page unless the marriage event on the family page had data or a source, so the user added a source (maybe before a proper source was found). Now that marriages show up regardless of whether or not there is any data or source, this source is no longer required.--DataAnalyst 12:32, 5 June 2022 (UTC)

New Albany [18 June 2022]

I saw a change to Kraft-Graceland Memorial Park in New Albany from cemetery to city. I question the change. It seems a true city should not have a cemetery name. Can you provide a reason for the change?--Stoney7path 01:29, 19 June 2022 (UTC)

You're right - a city shouldn't have the name of a cemetery. Since this is the page for the city, I removed the alt name that reflected the cemetery and created a separate page for the cemetery, as per WeRelate standards.--DataAnalyst 01:37, 19 June 2022 (UTC)

Renaming function [16 July 2022]

Hello Janet ! It's impossible for me to rename places, when they are (since page's creation) in a bad "département". Please see "Le Cannet" --> Alpes-Maritimes / Var ! --> [[Category:Speedy Delete]] ... and the problem with Place:Saint-Benoîr-du-Sault, Indre, France and Place:Nancy, Moselle, France

Thanks ! ----Markus3 09:15, 16 July 2022 (UTC)

I think I got this all fixed (deleted/redirected pages).--DataAnalyst 13:40, 16 July 2022 (UTC)
Ok - Merci / Thanks - --Markus3 16:50, 16 July 2022 (UTC)

Minor edit needed to home page, I think [16 July 2022]

Hello, Janet. On the WeRelate home page, in the Featured page section, I think there is a little problem in the third sentence which looks like an incomplete edit. Are you the person I should bring this to the attention of? Thanks.--Julie Kelts 20:08, 16 July 2022 (UTC)

Hi, Julie. I don't look after that section, but I passed your comment on to User:Delijim who does. If you check under Volunteer and click on the link for Selecting featured pages, you'll see that he is the administrator in charge of that function. Thanks for pointing this out.--DataAnalyst 20:26, 16 July 2022 (UTC)

A girl "Petit" with a father "Payet" [22 July 2022]

Hello ! There is a problem with this family Family:Charles Delisle and Marguerite Petit (1) ... The site Francogene knows these persons : ... But WeRelate gives (I mean) bad parents for Marguerite Petit. His father is not "Petit" but "Payet".
And when she is born in 1623, she cannot have a baby in 1632 (I have verified this birth in November 2013 and also this morning !- Marc R. --Markus3 09:22, 22 July 2022 (UTC)

The problem has origin in a bad "merging" : ---> - --Markus3 09:39, 22 July 2022 (UTC)
And it looks like you fixed it. Thanks--DataAnalyst 18:50, 22 July 2022 (UTC)

re: Your Message on My Talk Page [31 July 2022]


Thanks for your input on my questions to Susan Irish.

I do know that name/location/date fields have standards, but didn't know if cleanup on "GEDCOM junk" had any stated guidelines. Since I didn't know that the various numbers (RIN, APIS, MH, etc.) were from my GEDCOM imports, I hadn't removed them.

As I work here, I will consider any unfamiliar data as "GEDCOM junk" that can be removed.

Thanks again to you and Susan for your input and assistance.


--Rwbdragon 20:03, 31 July 2022 (UTC)


Problem saving the page [2 August 2022]

Found a page Person:James Fraley (6) where I think the facts after death are preventing the ability to save the page. I came across this page (and now all of the other pages from this 2020 gedcom... sigh), because the user (or the gedcom reviewer) created all new Source pages for almost every citation on every Person page. That's one of the problems, but as you can see, there are others. Another one is an issue with the dates. They did a very common thing, which is to cite child marriage and death records when they name the parents. Sometimes these record dates fell after the death of the parent. Is it correct to guess that these dates after death are causing the saving problem with the new date checking routine? Thanks, --cos1776 23:17, 2 August 2022 (UTC)

Yes. Nothing wrong with citing children's records as sources, but they shouldn't create facts/events from them. Looks like a lot of work if they did this throughout their GEDCOM, but the facts/events that are not part of their own life should all be deleted.--DataAnalyst 23:21, 2 August 2022 (UTC)

The additional argument to defer template [9 August 2022]

I assume you know it doesn't have to be there. If missing it should use a default value like "Issues reported at WeRelate->Data Quality Issues". Many templates do use default values (.e.g. vrtype). Although ideal, it seems like a waste of time adding it. Fix the template first, and from then on, will be handled right. I have done a couple hundred already and I see you're only on the A's in your list... --Jrich 23:55, 8 August 2022 (UTC)

Yeah - I'm not an expert on templates. Do you know the syntax for a default value?--DataAnalyst 01:52, 9 August 2022 (UTC)
That's why I mentioned vrtype. You can edit without saving to see the code. The first argument defaults to "born" by embedding this: {{{1|born}}}. If argument 1 isn't there, "born" is used. I am sure there are many more elaborate examples. --Jrich 03:03, 9 August 2022 (UTC)
Oops - didn't look closely enough at your first message. I've added the default, but I'll probably still update the rest of the usages of the template, because I've created a list and streamlined the process. Thanks, though.
BTW - the change to automate this will likely go into production this weekend, along with several other refinements.--DataAnalyst 19:14, 9 August 2022 (UTC)

deleted family [10 August 2022]

hi Janet,

I am looking at

The obituary of Antonius says he is a weduwnaar of Doortje so this means she died before him.

Can you undo the delete pls?

Thx Ron woepwoep 06:32, 9 August 2022 (UTC)

Same goes for 06:33, 9 August 2022 (UTC)

Done (for both). Note that undelete doesn't restore watchers, so you'll have to watch the pages again.--DataAnalyst 12:53, 9 August 2022 (UTC)
Thank you Janet. woepwoep 22:11, 9 August 2022 (UTC)

Jonas Hinchliffe [25 August 2022]

Hi Janet

Thanks so much for solving my "whale" of a problem. I was very glad to see it sorted when I woke up this morning (7 hour time difference between us, I think).

Your query about the birth dates. That was caused by leaving in extraneous material while I inspected the baptismal sources. Actually, I think there is a third Jonas Hinchliffe!

You once mentioned the difficulties you were trying to fix in JustAlf's contributions. I think Dsrodgers34 is of the same ilk. He quotes the sources for each individual without ever looking at the microfilm images, and therefore misses a lot of clues. For example, Jonas H (3) had a sister Mary who was still living at home after she was married and was listed by both married and maiden names in her parents' list of children. I got that one fixed.

In looking for sources in this part of Yorkshire I found Source:England. Non-Conformist and Non-Parochial Registers, 1567-1970 in Ancestry. One of the church collections included is that of Holmfirth Wesleyan Methodist Chapel where all the baptisms and burials from 1790 up to 1840 are listed in one volume and every microfilm image from the volume is available online. This area south of Huddersfield was a perfect example of the progress of the Industrial Revolution in spinning and weaving trades through 2 or 3 generations. I am slowly copying all the Hinchliffe baptisms (and burials) included. I don't see many user's comments for sources, but this time I decided to make one. Perhaps you might consider putting it forward for a month's "Featured Page".

Thanks again, Pat...--Goldenoldie 10:06, 24 August 2022 (UTC)

Thanks for your work on this. And interesting comments on the source page. I've nominated it for a Featured Page.--DataAnalyst 12:58, 25 August 2022 (UTC)

Dorothy_Clarke rename? [26 August 2022]

You renamed Person:Dorothy_Clarke_(16) to Person:Dorothy Clark (13). Her 1913 birth registration has surname spelled Clarke not Clark. Same for 1920 Census and 1938 Marriage. See 9HR9-WZM? for sources. Does WeRelate allow an 'undo' of this rename; or is a new rename now required? 03:35, 26 August 2022 (UTC)

Another rename is required. Sorry about that, but no other sources were on the page and her gravestone says Clark.--DataAnalyst 12:26, 26 August 2022 (UTC)

Quebec [19 October 2022]

Hello Janet ! Please, see Person:Jacques Duguay (1). I spend 3 full days to search his birth ! All sites give the same "bad info".

I have seen the records of the 3 places "Semur" in France. Nothing between 1635 and 1650 ! This surname is total unknown ! We need very serious sources ! Is it possible for you to access to the authentic original records (not transcriptions) ? --> his 2 marriages and death ? - Thanks ! --Markus3 15:35, 17 October 2022 (UTC)

I've looked up the images of his Quebec records. If I read them correctly, Semur en Aussoy is the birth place of his mother or possibly both his parents (Catherine de Lobret and Michel Dugay), but not Jacques himself. His parents are of the parish of Notre Dame - and there is a Notre Dame parish in Trois-Riviere, so I assume that is where they were living by 1672. If you send me your email address (by WeRelate email), I'll send you an email. Or I can do my best to transcribe the relevant passages. Let me know.--DataAnalyst 16:19, 17 October 2022 (UTC)
My email : - --Markus3 16:30, 17 October 2022 (UTC)
Hello ! Je n'ai pas encore trouvé la solution mais je continue à croire qu'il ne s'agit pas de Semur-en-Auxois. J'ai soupçonné un autre lieu à cause de "Dolle", cité dans l'un des actes ! J'ai survolé un peu Dole (dans le Jura), etc ... mais j'ai voulu privilégier "Dol-de-Bretagne", forcément plus logique à cause de la proximité géographique de la grande majorité des gens ayant émigré vers le Canada. Et je pense être arrivé à trouver quelques indices très intéressants : il y a plusieurs Dugué, etc ... à Dol-de-Bretagne à cette époque :
Je continuerai à enquêter demain ! - --Markus3 16:31, 19 October 2022 (UTC)
Did you get the emails I sent you? BTW: I was unable to find a baptism record for Jacques in Trois-Rivieres, Quebec.--DataAnalyst 16:34, 19 October 2022 (UTC)
Yes (for the emails) C'est sur l'un de tes 3 documents que j'ai eu confirmation de "Dolle" (que j'avais déjà repéré sur la page de Wikitree). Je me demandais initialement si ce n'était pas un titre (de propriété ou de "nouvelle noblesse") ... Thanks ... - --Markus3 16:49, 19 October 2022 (UTC)