WeRelate talk:Place patrol


Volunteering [29 September 2015]


I have been involved in the Australian pages and would like to continue to be. Thanks.


Hi Andrew, great! I will add your name to the main patrol page noting that you would like to focus on Australian pages. --Jennifer (JBS66) 18:07, 13 August 2012 (EDT)

Hi, Can I help with British places - England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland (N&S). Thanks Colin Madge

Thanks! I'll add your name to the project page. --Jennifer (JBS66) 17:29, 25 August 2012 (EDT)

Please count me in for US Midwestern and Mid-Atlantic states.

(I hope we can find someone for Germany. I think right now at least in northwestern Germany there's a mish-mash of 1900-based and post WWII place heierarchy.)

--Pkeegstra 19:57, 8 September 2012 (EDT)

Thank you! And yes, I hope we can find someone for Germany as well. Due to all of the changes to German places over the past 100 years it's probably the most difficult country to get straight. Hopefully someone with some German knowledge will offer their assistance.--Dallan 20:08, 14 September 2012 (EDT)

goldenoldie 15:30, 9 October 2012 (EDT)

I've been slow to volunteer to do Ontario places, but I wanted to finish the first run of sorting out the Place pages for southern Ontario before doing so. Otherwise it would be one of those projects that gets left "almost finished". I might feel comfortable doing the Maritime Provinces too, but Western Canadian Provinces use a different municipal structure and I am not sufficiently familiar with it to want to touch the entries, unless the error is quite simple.

I should be able to work with UK pages, seeing as that's where I live, but my British "sources" knowledge is not as good as it might be. Colin, I'll be glad to give a second opinion when you need it.

A question: Are pages we ought to sort out directed to us by some bot, or do we have to find them for ourselves?

Others may have noticed the great number of references to Place:Godo, Anpachi, Gifu, Japan, caused by people writing "Do" for "ditto" when referring back from a later census to an earlier one when the family never moved. I suppose this is a problem you are all familiar with, but it sure got a giggle out of me.

Hi Goldenoldie, thank you for offering to assist with this patrol! I will add your name on the main page for Ontario, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, PEI, and the United Kingdom.
Primarily, the place patrol is responsible for monitoring recent changes to place pages and making sure the edits conform to WeRelate's standards. You can go to Admin>Recent changes, then choose Place from the Namespace drop-down and press Go. That will filter the recent edits to show just new and edited Place pages. Then, it's a matter of checking these edits (by pressing the diff link if it is an edit, or click the Place page name for new places). --Jennifer (JBS66) 13:08, 13 October 2012 (EDT)

I would like to volunteer for Place patrol. My personal research areas are mid-Atlantic through the Midwest, but I see that there is a volunteer already assigned to those areas. Is there a need for a 2nd volunteer for these areas? Or is there another area I could help with in the United States? I am fairly new to WeRelate, but I believe I have a fair grasp of the location / place guidelines, and am always eager to learn more. Thank you.--RWMeyer 01:03, 29 September 2015 (UTC)

Welcome! Having additional coverage doesn't hurt. The top of my wishlist is someone who knows Eastern Europe and can help us figure out how to apply the "1900 Rule" where the top-level entities from 1900 not only no longer exist, but in many cases have been rearranged multiple times since 1900. --pkeegstra 10:36, 29 September 2015 (UTC)

Problematic place: Wales, England [22 November 2012]

I happened to notice a couple of usages of "Wales, England" in event place fields, which stood out since of course Wales is distinct from England. Some Americans don't know that, though, and end up appending ", England" to Wales to indicate where this odd place is located. (They are probably using "England" as a synonym for them British islands.) I wasn't particularly surprised until I saw that WeRelate had a Place:Wales, England, and that it actually redirected to Place:Wales, Yorkshire, England!

This is a problem that needs fixing, I think. Most of the usages of "Wales, England" are probably meant to refer to the region/country of 3,000,000 rather than the Yorkshire village of 6,000. A spot check shows some clear cases (Person:Edward Edwards (10), Source:Mathias Family Ancestry in Nebraska and Wales) and many likely cases (Person:Mary Owens (4), Person:Geoffrey De Bohun (2), Person:Phoebe Rice (1), Person:Ynyr Gwent (1), Person:Maria Thomas (20), Person:Edward Owen (10), etc.). There are also cases which look like someone accidentally accepted a system suggestion that the intended "Wales, England" was in Yorkshire, but maybe not too much can be done about that.

Perhaps Place:Wales, England should be changed to redirect to Place:Wales. I don't really know how things work, but maybe instead Place:Wales, England could be a sort of "disambiguation" page that pointed out the problem and pointed to the two possible places. There are also cases where the page text is "Wales, England" but the underlying wikilink goes to Place:Wales, Yorkshire, England; I would hope that those could be changed also. --Robert.shaw 17:21, 21 August 2012 (EDT)

Good catch. I've redirected Place:Wales, England to Place:Wales. To make future "Wales, England" places link to Place:Wales, I've added Place:England as an "also located in" place for Wales. I know this isn't correct, but it tells the place-matcher that it's ok to link "Wales, England" to Place:Wales instead of Place:Wales, Yorkshire, England. This won't fix the pages that are already linking to the wrong Wales though; we'll either have to visit those pages one by one and re-save them to update the link, or wait for someone to write a "bot" to automatically update the links.--Dallan 11:05, 26 August 2012 (EDT)

Places in Monmouthshire ought to be inspected with care. The county is supposed to be in Wales but some people will say it is/was in England. Wikipedia puts it as follows:

The second Laws in Wales Act of 1542 enumerated the counties of Wales and excluded Monmouthshire – This led to ambiguity as to whether the county was part of Wales or England.

The dispute went on until 1974! But, really, it ought to be in Wales. --goldenoldie 10:34, 22 November 2012 (EST)

Places with broken / incorrect links [25 November 2012]


Is it possible to do a search for places with broken / incorrect names etc to clear up.

I can imagine there are a few, but if I knew how to find them I would help to clear them and put corrections in place

eg Place:Gwynned, North Wales, England

Thanks--Colin Madge 08:21, 22 November 2012 (EST)

Hi Colin, do you mean red-links on pages like this Person:Gregory Boon (1)?
Well, there is a Special Page for Wanted Pages. However, this can be difficult to use since it is flooded with things like descriptions in place fields.
Another way that I use, is to see "what links here" from a known red-link. For example, you know that Place:Gwynned, North Wales, England is red-linked. So, from that empty place page, click "what links here" and you can fix all of the pages that call for that (incorrect) place. I find it's easiest to fix the Person pages first - then the Family pages (because, often, the Family pages are on the list because of a reference on a Person page). One more tip might be to do a search for "Wales, England" (or other popular error). Then, you can focus on your area of interest when trying to locate these errors. --Jennifer (JBS66) 09:00, 23 November 2012 (EST)

Thanks - will have a look and make some changes--Colin Madge 13:59, 23 November 2012 (EST)

Jennifer said "Well, there is a Special Page for Wanted Pages. However, this can be difficult to use since it is flooded with things like descriptions in place fields."

What fun! I am proceeding with housecleaning the problems of [[Place:Mara, Ontario, Ontario, Canada]] and the villages and cemeteries inside it. Each one has 57 different varities of inconsistencies. --goldenoldie 04:15, 25 November 2012 (EST)

I noticed yesterday that Colin was redirecting some of the red-linked places like Colchester South Tp, Essex, Ontario, Canada > Colchester, Essex, Ontario, Canada

  • Should this be redirected to Place:Colchester South, Essex, Ontario, Canada instead?
  • I recall that some time ago, Dallan had cautioned me against doing this for red-linked placed in the Netherlands. Back in 2009 he said in part "Please don't set up redirects for all of these pages. That would be a lot of work, and the new abbreviations make the redirects unnecessary going forward...In the next few months (early Spring) I'm going to write a program to re-match all of the places on existing person and family pages". That process did not happen. Maybe we need to add this as a Suggestion? --Jennifer (JBS66) 06:28, 25 November 2012 (EST)

Colcehster South, Essex, Ontario, Canada would have been the correct redirect. Colchester [municipality] did not replace Colchester South (and a few other places) until 1999. This is noted on the pages for Colchester South, Colchester and Essex [county]. --goldenoldie 08:48, 25 November 2012 (EST)

Ok, thanks, I adjusted that redirect to point to Place:Colchester South, Essex, Ontario, Canada --Jennifer (JBS66) 09:02, 25 November 2012 (EST)

Goldenoldie, I noticed that you added a couple of alt names to Place:Mara, Ontario, Ontario, Canada. When adding alt names, you don't want to add the full hierarchy, only the part of the alt name that corresponds to that place page. So, for Mara, you could add Mara Twp and for Ontario County you can add Ontario Co. - but you don't want to add they whole Mara Twp., Ontario Co., Ontario under Mara. --Jennifer (JBS66) 06:47, 25 November 2012 (EST)

Thanks, I'll adjust the place pages. A bit of new learning happening. --goldenoldie 08:48, 25 November 2012 (EST)

Slap on the wrist

Will not touch anything with Ontario in title.

Colin--Colin Madge 15:01, 25 November 2012 (EST)

Redirects [4 June 2017]

I am not sure creating redirects is the best approach to fixing place page red-links. One recent example is redirecting Place:Halifax to Place:Halifax, Yorkshire, England. However, there are other Halifax's in the world - Nova Scotia, Virginia, etc. Wikipedia handles this by creating disambiguation pages such as WP:Halifax. However, disambiguation pages cause problems for the place matching software. I am going to bring this up as a point to the Overview Committee to see what is the best approach in dealing with this. For now, I would suggest not creating redirects solely for the purpose of cleaning up the red-linked Wanted Pages. --Jennifer (JBS66) 16:31, 27 November 2012 (EST)

And in fact I have also seen pages which were not redirects and which look like disambiguation pages or intentionally ambiguous places to manage ambiguity in the source (e.g. under Ohio, United States). In my opinion that is not consistent with the WR view of a coherent valid place hierarchy either. --Pkeegstra 14:37, 28 November 2012 (EST)
You mean like this place? It appears to me the reasoning for this is a bit outdated. WR is not handling this type of problem via redirects, but also-located in places instead. --Jennifer (JBS66) 14:49, 28 November 2012 (EST)
OK. That wasn't what I thought. I thought there were three different Fostorias in different parts of Ohio. The issue rather is that Fostoria is one of those cities which spans multiple counties (like Holland, MI). So I assume the question is how to allow allow those who know the part of the city in which an event took place to specify that but also to allow a county-agnostic definition when that specificity is not available. Is that a fair summary? I'll do some thinking about that. --Pkeegstra 16:56, 28 November 2012 (EST)
That is how I understand it. There is a place like this in Friesland, Rottevalle. It was located in the gemeenten of Smallingerland, Achtkarspelen, and Tietjerksteradeel. We chose to title Rottevalle within the gemeente where it was located in to the greater percentage. Then, we listed the other 2 gemeente as also-located in places. If a GEDCOM is imported with Rottevalle being contained in any one of the 3 gemeente - the place will link to the proper page. This is not very different from users wanting a place title to exactly match their place at the time of an event. Piped descriptions would be used to indicate the place at the time of the event, but the link would point to a common place page. --Jennifer (JBS66) 17:50, 28 November 2012 (EST)
I think that's how it works in Holland, Michigan too. The only county specified for it is Ottawa, but it has an "also located in" for Allegan. And as you said, people who really care can use a place pipe. So I think we don't need the Fostoria disambiguation page. --Pkeegstra 19:07, 28 November 2012 (EST)

I may be guilty of wrongly linking Places in redirects. I will stop amending these places until someone suggests away of getting the "rubbish" out of WeRelate.

They majority of this has been uploaded via a Gedcoms and the contributor has done nothing !! They have sat here for at least 3 years(2008/2009). Over to the committee - can a bot clean up ? - I am only trying to help and don't see many others helping just criticizing.--Colin Madge 14:53, 28 November 2012 (EST)

Colin, I wasn't singling you out specifically, and it is great that you are willing to help out! I did add this as an agenda item for the Overview Committee, so that may generate additional ideas. The way that I've been cleaning up Netherlands red-linked places is this: I find a page with a red-linked place (in your case it might be Family:William White and Ann Thomas (1). This page yields 3 different places that could use fixing. I open the red-linked place in another browser window, then click on "what links here". From there, I can work on the Person pages, then the Family pages to fix those specific places. When doing this, I inevitably come up to other red-links from the same user where I again open the "what links here" in another browser window. I realize this method may be more work than you intended. The Special Wanted Pages list that you and other users are working from will eventually prove to be unhelpful to find red-linked places because it has a display limit of 1000 pages. --Jennifer (JBS66) 18:11, 28 November 2012 (EST)

Thanks for the clarity - I appreciate that redirects is not the solution to everything but I am finding it fustrating to amend someones data who last used the site in 2008. Uploaded the gedcom and has not been seen since.--Colin Madge 13:30, 29 November 2012 (EST)

I should be able to help you out with this worthy task once I get done with some cleanup on the Colony of Connecticut and the top-level places in United States and Ohio. --Pkeegstra 14:12, 29 November 2012 (EST)

I'm glad to see the button is pushed on the cache of "Wanted places" every week. I've been working on a group in one particular geographical area and amongst the other changes Place:St Columbkille's Cem., Uptergrove, Ontario Co. Canada West ‎has gone down from 336 to 89! This week I have made a list of the ones I've been working on so I can see the progress next Sunday.

But I have been wondering about a couple of entries in the list that seem perfectly plausible: Place:At Sea and Place:Atlantic Ocean. I've found both in census records. What's the policy on these?

How about if every keen WR member removed 5 Place:UNKNOWN, 2 Place:Farmer and 1 Place:Blacksmith every day? Would we get somewhere? --goldenoldie 04:32, 3 December 2012 (EST)

Please don't omit from your list of places to be removed Place:US Navy, United States just because it's not red. I've never seen a policy for specific bodies of water, but I think there's a logical distinction between a specific body of water and "at sea". I would put specific ships in the same category as the latter, since a ship is mobile, and I would say all of those belong in the free-text field, not the place field. Shall we set a policy on specific bodies of water? --Pkeegstra 06:06, 3 December 2012 (EST)
Place:UNKNOWN is complete. I would suggest Place:Unknown in its place.--Khaentlahn 13:02, 15 May 2013 (EDT)
Follow up: we're still at this task in 2017! Slow, but steady progress, and the incoming bad Place links via GEDCOM have been drastically reduced, so we may eventually catch up. Place:Blacksmith is now clear, so I unlinked it (and several others) from the discussions above to allow the pages to clear completely from the Wanted pages list. --cos1776 17:36, 4 June 2017 (UTC)

Another problematic place: Ireland [23 June 2015]

This week I've been fixing up places and cemeteries based around Place:Mara, Ontario, Ontario, Canada--all contributed by one person who probably never inspected his/her contribution to WR after completing it.

Many "tops of trees" for this lot arrived in Mara from Ireland in the first half of the 19th century and for many the county of origin was known. These birthplace are given as, for instance, "Co. Cork" or "Co. Tyrone". Because of the way our place database has been set up, adding Ireland to the county brings up "County Cork, Republic of Ireland" or "County Tyrone, Northern Ireland", respectively, obliging a second correction to bring the place back to Ireland, the country from which they came.

Ireland did not split until 1922. Shouldn't it therefore be the primary place in our database rather than the two entities that it split into? And, because all three places are top-tier places, doesn't the change have to be made by an administrator?

I also notice that only one or two of the counties of the Republic have the "Co." abbreviation in their list of "Alternate names". (The Northern Irish counties have "Co" because it is a recognized Post Office expression.) I will now add "Co." to the Republic lot so that this most common way of expressing a birthplace can be recognized by our software.

One other problem. Tipperary split into North Tipperary and South Tipperary in 1898. It's really going to take a lot of geographical knowledge to know how to put those ancestors in their proper place. <sad smile>
--goldenoldie 05:35, 1 December 2012 (EST)

I had assumed that our approach for Ireland was to use the 1900 structure but overlay it on the modern national realities. Does that make sense, in that the 1900 counties split neatly between Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland? (A pure 1900 approach would leave the poor Irish stuck forever in pre-Independence status.) Since it's only two years out, let's discuss whether we can come up with a solution for Tipperary. Maybe keep all 3, but agree that all subsidiary places are defined in North Tipperary or South Tipperary and "also located in" Tipperary?
Along those lines, I did find something amusing. In the old cemetery in Half Moon Bay, CA, all of the burials of which long predated Irish independence, the tombstones of the immigrants from Ireland made sure you knew that that's precisely where they were from (not the UK). --Pkeegstra 07:17, 1 December 2012 (EST)

Because ancestors occurred in the past rather than in the present I would prefer to overlay the modern national realities on the former structure--the opposite philosophy to yours. "Located in Ireland from year [blank] to 1922" followed by "Also located in: Republic of Ireland|1922|" indicates there was a change in the 20th century. There could still be WR pages for the Republic and for Northern Ireland expressing the change on the opposite lines. What arrangement has been used for other countries whose status and names have changed in the 20th century, e.g. the Austro-Hungarian Empire, Russia/USSR/Russia-again, Israel, and former colonial regimes in Africa?

Tipperary's 1898 split is a fly in the ointment. (I didn't know there was a North and South Tipperary till this morning.) I think I noticed that the box "Located in Republic of Ireland from year ...." was empty for Tipperary but filled in for other counties. Perhaps putting 1922 there might help (even if it isn't exactly right).

I tend to dislike the simple "child" and "parent" explanation in the "See also" box. One needs a date and a few facts about the parentage. Working through the Ontario counties and their changes in municipal structure between 1970 and 2006 (every county was different), I got into a routine and filled in the before and after arrangements for each place page. Took a while, but it makes an easy reference for someone wondering where to look for vital statistics when today's municipalities are different from those that were used when their ancestor was hatched, matched or dispatched.

Your experience with Half Moon Bay is no surprise to me. People always considered they lived in Scotland or Ireland or Wales or England. Occasionally they might think "Britain" but Great Britain was only England, Wales and Scotland. Ireland was always a separate island. Great Britain and Ireland was a mouthful (and would have taken a lot of chipping on a tombstone). The United Kingdom is a modern idiom (came in either in 1922 when Ireland broke away, or in 1931 when the Commonwealth replaced the Empire).

--goldenoldie 10:09, 1 December 2012 (EST)

The one I'm dreading having to try to get a high-level consensus on is western Poland. But you're right, almost all of Eastern Europe is in the same boat. Anyways, it looks like what I described is the existing practice for Ireland and what you described is what someone starting from the "1900 Rule" would devise. I'd offer to discuss this at the Overview Committee (n.b. Klaas is our formal liason), but it sounds like Dallan has handed this issue over to the Place Patrol. So what do we (i.e. the Place Patrol) think? --Pkeegstra 12:33, 1 December 2012 (EST)

Buck-passing seems to be the name of the game. Anyone else want to join the discussion? --goldenoldie 12:07, 1 December 2012 (EST)

Goldenoldie, this isn't about passing the buck. Pkeegstra was just stating a fact that consulting the Overview Committee is not necessary, the members of this patrol can decide on this ourselves. My vote would be to follow the recommendations of Goldenoldie.
There were a couple of past discussions that I'll note here just for reference.
  • This one suggested place names should include the Parish
  • This one suggested place names should not include the Parish.
What would be your recommendation for hierarchy structure? --Jennifer (JBS66) 16:11, 1 December 2012 (EST)
I'm perfectly willing to help implement moving the counties to a unified Ireland top-level domain (the pure "1900 rule" solution) if that is the consensus.
Just looking at those two post pointers from Jennifer and a couple of Ireland county articles in Wikipedia, it looks to me like the townland is an extremely fine-grained level of structure. Does anyone have a feel for how that compares with our finest level of granularity in other countries? I'm guessing that the bottom line from Genearchivist's suggestion is that if we say we won't go down to a level finer than the town, then since the towns are unambiguous in each county, we can get away with a three-level heierarchy. If we want to be precise to the townland we need either the parish or the barony as well to prevent ambiguity. --Pkeegstra 18:53, 1 December 2012 (EST)

My own experience (perhaps I should say genealogicial exposure) to Ireland is very slight, so I don't want to get involved in the hierarchical structure problem. However, on Saturday I added the Wikipedia sections on structure to each of the Republic of Ireland counties, so the names of the baronies and in some cases the townlands and/or the parishes are now at the fingertips of users. I hope this will be useful.

I am glad to hear that you, Jennifer, consider holding on to the 1900-rule for Ireland. Many North Americans know their ancestors came from a specific county and also are sufficiently aware of 20th-century history to know that they did not come from places named either the Republic of Ireland or Northern Ireland. It is a welcoming gesture to new faces not to turn the red light on (i.e. the place name turning red) when they enter the birthplace of their furthest back known ancestor. Only ten years ago it was much harder to trace Irish ancestors than it is today. It is not an easy part of genealogy to get to grips with.

Sorry about the buck-passing comment. I saw the message just as I was about to leave the computer to provide for the needs of my present-day family and was tempted to say something quickly.--goldenoldie 08:37, 3 December 2012 (EST)

For what it's worth, I looked at my transcriptions of tombstones in New Jersey with Irish places of birth and more than 90% of them, when they give something more specific than a county, give a parish (presumably the civil parish) as the place of birth, not the townland.--Acurley 18:00, 18 October 2014 (UTC)

What about using the 1901 Census (so acknowleding the 1900 rule) and use 'Townland, Civil Parish, County, Ireland', or 'Civil Parish, County, Ireland'?--Acurley 14:20, 8 December 2014 (UTC)

It doesn't appear there has been much traction on this issue. Since most research will be done pre-independence, most place references would need to be piped to display the accurate name of the place where the event occurred (plain old Ireland instead of the Republic). But since I have not had to deal with the Irish sources (I'm only looking at some of the Peers), I don't know if there is any advantage in keeping them in the current structure.

Also, could we drop the word "County"? We don't include that in the U.S. places even though it is a part of the official name. -Moverton 18:43, 23 June 2015 (UTC)

The official Irish census site uses Townland, Civil Parish [strictly speaking DED, but this is usually a civil parish], County. The enumerator's abstract page has ten possible subdivisions of a county, but they chose Townland and Civil Parish for the index. Thus you have: Census Years 1901 Limerick [county] Mahoonagh [civil parish] Curragh [townland]. It gets a little complicated when it is a question of a city, but the cities really don't cause confusion. The townland page could list the other civil divisions of which the townland is a part.--Acurley 01:16, 24 June 2015 (UTC)

Disambiguation pages [3 December 2012]

The software uses the place pages internally as a database for matching gedcom's and other places. I worry that if we create new disambiguation pages for places, that could make it more difficult for the software to match the real place pages -- it might match the disambiguation pages instead. How do we feel about leaving places that are ambiguous as red links?--Dallan 14:06, 3 December 2012 (EST)

I would say to put the link at the level which is unambiguous in the place box and the rest in the free text box. For "Halifax", that would be everything in the text box, but for "Mill, Ohio" that would be "Mill" in the text box and Ohio, United States in the place box. Does this make sense? (I agree that disambiguation pages clutter up our heierarchy and are a departure from the design philosophy that place pages represent an unified heirarchy of well-defined places. --Pkeegstra 14:39, 3 December 2012 (EST)
I like that idea.--Dallan 15:20, 3 December 2012 (EST)

History of the 1900 rule [3 December 2012]

When I created the place pages initially, I had data from FamilySearch's Family History Libary Catalog (FHLC), the Getty Thesaurus of Geographic Place Names, and a bunch of places extracted from Wikipedia. About 50% of the places in the FHLC were not in either of the other two sources, so I used that as my reference point, and tried to merge the other two datasets into the FHLC dataset as best I could. I discovered that the FHLC dataset generally chooses a particular year for its place hierarchy, though the year chosen varies by country. I couldn't find any resource where they said which year was used for each country, so I had to determine the year based upon the data. If you go to the country's homepage, the year chosen for the jurisdictional hierarchy is listed in the "How places are organized" section (at least it is for the major countries). In general, the year chosen by FHLC was in the early 1900's (France was an exception unfortunately -- its year is in the 1960's). In order to have a simple rule for WeRelate, I started asking people to title places according to the hierarchy they appeared under in 1900 - hence the 1900 rule. Do all places follow this rule? No, because the FHLC did not religiously follow this rule, and I wasn't expert enough to correct them. I corrected a few place hierarchies to follow this rule when I knew how to fix them, but I'm still not an expert in place history, which is why I'm turning this over to people like you who know a lot more about place history than I do.--Dallan 14:06, 3 December 2012 (EST)

One particularly challenging place is Germany, where the FHLC lists some places twice -- once as they were in 1900 and again under the modern state of Thuringen. (I note this on Place:Germany.) Also, Eastern Europe is a bit of a mess, with some places duplicated under several countries: Hungary, Romania, etc. The best resource I could find to try to sort things out was Statoids, but it's far from complete; there are probably better country-specific websites out there.--Dallan 14:12, 3 December 2012 (EST)
I think we can allow the local experts for a country to resynchronize the 1900 rule and clearly state so on the top-level page for that heierarchy (which is sometimes, e.g. UK and Ireland, not exactly a country). e.g. I believe the Indonesia experts are using the structure immediately after independence as their baseline, and not some Dutch colonial heirarchy. I think the fundamental principle is that for every country we use a fixed and specified timeframe as early in the 20th century as makes sense, and not a continuously moving target. Do we agree with this? (I know some people don't like it, because it forces anachronisms like West Virginia place pages on events before 1863 and United States place pages on most colonial events.) --Pkeegstra 14:52, 3 December 2012 (EST)
I know some people want to make the place page titles agree with their current jurisdictional hierarchy. But keeping up with all of the hierarchy changes going on in Europe would be challenging. If we pick a specific year (even a different year for each country), we at least have a stable target.--Dallan 15:20, 3 December 2012 (EST)

Possibility of re-running place matching [7 December 2012]

As an alternative to manually editing a bunch of old pages with red links, I could write something so the system would automatically try to match red-linked places against the latest place database and edit the pages to turn red links into blue ones when it found a match. Would that be useful?--Dallan 14:06, 3 December 2012 (EST)

Currently, the GEDCOM matcher uses the user's defined country to help better match places. My concern with having a program automatically re-match red-linked places, is, for example, that places such as Amsterdam (in the NL) will redirect to Place:Amsterdam, Saskatchewan, Canada. This is what currently happens when a user enters only Amsterdam and saves the page. We could be introducing errors onto pages for the sake of removing red-links. --Jennifer (JBS66) 14:17, 3 December 2012 (EST)
Good point.--Dallan 15:20, 3 December 2012 (EST)

Places like Amsterdam and Halifax are always going to cause trouble, so I go along with Jennifer in hesitating to install an all-over tweak to software. But could we give you groups of red-inked places all from the same country (or even from the same state or province) to work with, and then it would be on to the next set of problem places?

There are three places in England--all situated practically at my doorstep--that are phrased with the town in UPPERCASE and no commas between the town, the county and "England". This lot will be a special case because of the lacking commas no matter what. (There may be more than three but these are ones I have seen in the top 1000).

--goldenoldie 16:32, 3 December 2012 (EST)

How about targetting Place :Unknown, Place : Farmer, Place : ?, Place : Y,

More targeted approach Thanks--Colin Madge 13:14, 4 December 2012 (EST)

Ok, so suppose we had a way to automatically-correct pages with specific texts in the place field; ie, automatically fix every page that linked to Place:Unknown. How should we edit those places to correct them -- move the text to the description field? What if we had a Special page where you could specify three things: the current text in a place field, the edited text to go into the place field, and the text to move into the description field, and this would cause the system to edit all pages containing that text and make the replacement?--Dallan 10:08, 7 December 2012 (EST)

This looks good, but we must allow for blank fields in the finished article, i.e. farmer goes into Description and Place stays blank. --goldenoldie 12:11, 7 December 2012 (EST)

Churches as Places - what is the rule? [22 November 2022]

I know you should not have a church as a place - St Marys, Chepstow.Chepstow in Wales the place. But you can have ,for example, a cemetery as a place , which is also a church. Lots of examples in England, Scotland, Wales etc.

Gedcoms uploaded for marriages/christenings/baptistisms etc - have had churches . Should these be amended ? to the place name and the chuch added seperate.--Colin Madge 12:39, 4 December 2012 (EST)

You are correct, churches should not have their own place page. If there is a cemetery by the same name, that can be added. Information such as name of church a person was married in, hospital one was born in, etc should be placed in the event's description field. --Jennifer (JBS66) 19:51, 6 December 2012 (EST)

I understand (and agree with) the rule about not creating churches. So what do we do with the following existing Place pages?:

The first 3 of these places have been used as burial places - which would be comparable to using a cemetery page. At least one has also been used as a marriage place, which is not consistent with the level of detail of marriage place for most couples.

I can see the argument for keeping them to be used as a burial place (for people who were buried in the actual church, not the cemetery). However, to do so, we have a place type called "Place of worship", which has seemed to encourage some users to create other places of worship. If we're going to keep the place type, we need to monitor for new Place pages being inappropriately created for places of worship. (I just deleted a couple and another couple need to be deleted once references are updated.)

My preference would be to delete these pages and remove the type "Place of worship", since our guidelines are quite clear on not creating Place pages for churches. People buried in the church would have to be updated to say they were buried in the town (with the church name in the description field).


BTW: The rule/guideline should be updated to "do not create Place pages for places of worship (e.g., churches, Quaker meeting houses, synagogues, mosques). A couple of the new Place pages I just deleted were for mosques, and I suspect that Quakers might not consider their meeting houses to be churches. I can make this change once we have a resolution to the question above.

--DataAnalyst 16:03, 30 October 2022 (UTC)

Here are some more probable Quaker meeting pages to be removed once links are resolved. I am slowly working on this.
(list updated) ----cos1776 21:12, 22 November 2022 (UTC)

Invernesshire [5 December 2012]

Every time the true Scot in me sees the "County of Inverness" spelled as above it niggles. Because there are actually 3 s's, the spelling is Inverness-shire.
It has places within it, so I cannot make the alteration myself. Please fix.
--goldenoldie 09:08, 5 December 2012 (EST)

Fixed. If the page metadata is to be believed, Webster's Geographical Dictionary actually spells it as in the message topic. --Pkeegstra 10:47, 5 December 2012 (EST)
Wikipedia spells internationally better than Webster's, and Wikipedia spells it Inverness-shire. We could never use Webster's Dictionary in Canada when I was growing up. Honour, colour and labour are all spelled with a "u" north of the border.

--goldenoldie 12:01, 5 December 2012 (EST)

Yes, when I wrote the change summary I explicitly cited Wikipedia. --Pkeegstra 13:46, 5 December 2012 (EST)

Newfoundland [9 December 2012]

In sorting out red-inked places, I just found a family living in Newfoundland before it joined Canada as Place:Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada in 1949.

Newfoundland is an alternate placename for Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada, but can we put it in as a place in itself? I have at least one new community to add and I may find others.

Just to save you running to other sources: From 1583 to 1907 Newfoundland's formal name was the Colony of Newfoundland and between 1907 and 1949 it was the Dominion of Newfoundland. Labrador was a part of Newfoundland during that time, but there was little population outside the native people until the mid 20th century. (Mother country: Great Britain, of course)

--goldenoldie 05:07, 9 December 2012 (EST)

I think the Oversight Committee agreed that places like Newfoundland before confederation would be top-level entities (i.e. not defined under "Kingdom of England"). I concur that the "1900 rule" solution is appropriate in this case. --Pkeegstra 07:21, 9 December 2012 (EST)

New France [25 December 2012]

As things stand WR does not recognize Quebec as a place until 1791 when the Constitutional Act separated the Province of Quebec into Upper Canada (current southern Ontario) and Lower Canada (current southern Quebec). It was well-settled by French speaking people during the 17th century and was a colony of France, known as New France (along with all the rest of France's North American holdings) until 1763.

In 1763 it was taken over by the British who named it "The Province of Quebec" and considered it one of their standard colonies until 1791.

New France was a very well organized territory. Roman Catholic Church records are available for descendants wishing to do their genealogy. I think it deserves to be added to our places.

We will need "The Province of Quebec" to cover 1763-1791 as well.

New France is a pretty good explanation.

Incidently, how does one present a French acute accent without cutting and pasting? --goldenoldie 15:38, 17 December 2012 (EST)

Are the Province of Quebec and New France similar enough that we can use the same page for them both? --Pkeegstra 17:56, 18 December 2012 (EST)
For some reason that I can't figure out, I did not have e-mail advice of your reply, so I did not see it until the following topic was added in the past 12 or so hours.

New France and the 1763-1791 regime were different in that they had different sovereign states running them. Technically, New France included the lands along the Mississippi as well as Quebec. After 1763 the ordinary French-speaking people of Quebec and their government treated each other with a fair amount of distrust.

User:RDMoffat and I have been discussing this on our talk pages. The "Contained In" box is the problem. I was wondering if we could use a supplementary page for Great Britain (or England before 1703), France, Germany, the Netherlands, and others that could be used as the top hierarchical page for their colonies abroad, but would be separate from the top layer of their place within their internal territory. I haven't examined how the Netherlands--Indonesia situation is being handled, but the users must have come to some conclusions.

I am holding off introducing a family to WR until the Quebec before 1791 gets sorted. Can't have them living somewhere that doesn't exist.
--goldenoldie 03:04, 22 December 2012 (EST)

The pattern for existing dependent states like Bermuda is to make them top-level entities, and that was endorsed by the Oversight Committee for historical colonies also (where they could not be unified with existing entities, e.g. Colony of Connecticut). So either New France should be a top-level entity or the 5 constituent entities which were called colonies (and were administered separately) ought to be top-level entities. (i.e. Canada, Acadia, Hudson Bay, Newfoundland (Plaisance), and Louisiana.) Given that it is defined as a top-level entity, if the area included by New France and the Province of Quebec was essentially equivalent, I don't see why they can't be unified. (I also believe that we should eventually unify Alsace and Elsass for similar reasons....) --Pkeegstra 09:34, 22 December 2012 (EST)
My priority is to be able to refer to Quebec as New France without it being red-inked if I am referring to an event that took place before 1763, just as I can use Upper Canada or Canada West for Ontario at the moment. If the five areas were administered separately, then they should each be top-level entities. Some of these historical facts have passed me by till now--hadn't heard of Elsass (but I've been to Alsace more than once).

Seasons greetings
--goldenoldie 16:02, 22 December 2012 (EST)

Seasons Greetings also to you. I'll try to get them defined this week. I think I'll make all six top-level entities with "also located in" pointers from the five administrative colonies to "New France". --Pkeegstra 12:02, 24 December 2012 (EST)
OK, I've defined Nouvelle-France with four subcolonies. I have not yet defined the three districts for Canada, Nouvelle-France. --Pkeegstra 18:20, 25 December 2012 (EST)

Watts twp, Perry, PA [24 December 2012]

For some reason Place:Watts, Perry, Pennsylvania, United States doesn't exist. Here's the WP page. --Robert.shaw 21:37, 21 December 2012 (EST)

Added. All the townships in Perry County are now defined, and have coordinates specified. --Pkeegstra 14:43, 24 December 2012 (EST)

Place "types" [4 January 2013]

Is there a provision for places named by other cultures or religions separate from the normal geographic designation? My question concerns Native American place names and Quaker place names. Concerning a specific example, there is a Quaker area called Chichester, Chester county, Pennsylvania, which does not correspond to modern geographic locations, but in many Quaker resources, this is how they referenced this part of Pennsylvania. Is there a Type when creating a new place that handles these?--Khaentlahn 22:09, 22 December 2012 (EST)

If events are defined in terms of these places WeRelate needs to accommodate them somehow, even if they can't be identified with the place heirarchy already defined. How to do this will need to be discussed. For now, these could be handled like ambiguous places, for which the recommended way to handle is to specify the enclosing entity to the finest granularity possible in the place box and put the rest in the free-text "description" box. e.g. Mill City, Ohio would get "Ohio, United States" in the place box and "Mill City" in the description box. --Pkeegstra 12:12, 24 December 2012 (EST)
I would suggest that the first step in getting something like this implemented is a catchy name for the place type which would be used to identify it. Any ideas? --Pkeegstra 18:22, 25 December 2012 (EST)
Catchy name? I don't know that I have one, but at least for the Quakers, they were all defined by their monthly meetings (MM, as I've seen it commonly referenced), therefore "Quaker MM" might perhaps be usable. It is a reference to how they chose to recognize their area of interest, since the modern society's idea of community and naming practices for months of the year was unacceptable to them. (I apologize for the delay in response, I didn't have the page watched and lost where I posted this.)--Khaentlahn 20:08, 4 January 2013 (EST)

>Is there a provision for places named by other cultures or religions separate from the normal geographic designation?

I have been tempted to call them "settlements". --goldenoldie 04:35, 2 January 2013 (EST)

Is that what these are? My impression of the concept under discussion was that it involved, say, a collection of settlements from a specific subculture that that subculture recognized as regionally related (which regional relationship did not follow the majority political heirarchy). (A single settlement could be located in the hierarchy where it had the most overlap, just like we do with cities which span counties.) --Pkeegstra 06:26, 2 January 2013 (EST)
It was just a suggestion. --goldenoldie 07:37, 2 January 2013 (EST)

Atlantic Ocean and "At Sea" [7 January 2013]

Not common places of birth and death (and marriage for that matter), but they did happen.
From "Wanted Places":

  • Place:At sea ‎(154 links)
  • Place:At Sea ‎(380 links)
  • Place:Atlantic Ocean ‎(67 links)

Could we give them a Place Page or two?

"Place:At sea during the crossing to France ‎(69 links)" deals with a specific unfortunate sea voyage in 1759.
--goldenoldie 04:32, 2 January 2013 (EST)

People who died in a specific ill-fated voyage sounds like a candidate for a category. I'm not sure if our existing category hierarchy has a slot for it. Maybe ill-fated migrations as a subcategory of migrations in general? (If WeRelate doesn't already have the roster of the Scott Antarctic Expedition, that could also be a subcategory of "ill-fated voyages" and perhaps a contest.) --Pkeegstra 15:46, 7 January 2013 (EST)
The 1759 tragedy was a group of people escaping from Acadia back to France just as the British took it over. There may be another category for these people given the circumstances. I must admit I never thought of Acadia when I saw the description in "Wanted Places". It was quite well documented on the couple of Person Pages I looked at out of curiosity.--goldenoldie 16:54, 7 January 2013 (EST)
Since "at sea" and even specific bodies of water are rather locationally ill-defined, my own preference would be to put them in the text box (with the ship name, if known). But I could certainly be convinced otherwise by a specific proposal. One idea would be to have a page "at sea" and the specifics (body of water and ship name) in the text box. --Pkeegstra 06:17, 2 January 2013 (EST)
Usually "at sea" and "Atlantic Ocean" are found on censuses where the enumerator has a fairly limited space to fill and often a directive to keep the location to a very general location. For 1871 census and after in Canada--the province or another country was all that was allowed. When looking at a family, the "at sea" birth is the marker for the migration year for the lot of them.

I go along with your suggestion of an "at sea" page with more details if known in the description box.--goldenoldie 07:50, 2 January 2013 (EST)

OK, I'll create a page like that first thing tomorrow (Thursday, 3 Jan), so anyone else with an opinion has a bit of time to comment. --Pkeegstra 11:12, 2 January 2013 (EST)
OK, it didn't happen on the third, but there is now a place At Sea. --Pkeegstra 13:49, 5 January 2013 (EST)

Place:Carpenter [7 January 2013]

Quite relervant for the time of year - Joseph and all that !!

Can any thing be done to delete from places ??--Colin Madge 12:39, 5 January 2013 (EST)

To the best of my knowledge, this will go away after "Carpenter" is removed from the Place field on the pages linked to that place page.--Khaentlahn 13:01, 5 January 2013 (EST)

Cannot anything be done automatically ?? To save some poor person deleting 1,351 manually ?? Colin

Dallan had an idea for a tool which would automate the process. I believe it was still in the concept phase. --Pkeegstra 14:45, 7 January 2013 (EST)

Can't remember how many "carpenters" there are, but there are 1351 "farmers" and all sorts of other places of this ilk!

See "Possibility of re-running place matching [7 December 2012]" on Place Patrol and a few articles preceding. --goldenoldie 13:58, 5 January 2013 (EST)

Wanted pages [10 February 2013]

Could the red-linked Wanted pages be reorder on a seperate page, but botton up rather than Top down.Smaller ones at the top.

Might be alot of quick wins.

--Colin Madge 12:29, 9 February 2013 (EST)

Place:Hungary [5 mrt 2013]

See on Place:Hungary
Prior to World War I, Hungary was divided into 64 counties (according to Statoids) or 71 counties (according to Wikipedia). After World War I, the old counties were abolished and Hungary was divided into 19 counties. At WeRelate the pre-WWI counties are called "former counties" and the post-WWI counties are called "counties".
The standard at WeRelate is to title Hungarian place pages according to their former county when the former county is known, with also-located-in links to the modern county when it is known.

I understand from this that Hungary is classified according to the 1900 standard.

As Place:Kassa, Abauj-Torna, Hungary

But the cities that after 1920 no longer lie in Hungary, got on WeRelate also a location in the country today.

As Place:Košice, Košice, Slovensko, Czechoslovakia

With the result that a city is listed twice.
I think these places should be merged and this to the situation of 1900.
I see this correctly? Greetings,--Lidewij 10:45, 2 March 2013 (EST)

On the page “Eastern European Place Renaming” is written “a place to organize ideas”.
Many Eastern Europeans in the 19th century emigrated to America. The old names I think therefore a good idea.
My idea is: one village merge by clicking the 'Hungarian' page with some information to put very clearly the different names with dates when this name is used. The Slovak name / page is a redirect created. The redirects are provided with an appropriate category so that these names in the category in green text to find.
When all the villages of the region are moved and the regional page is empty, the region name / Region also a redirect to be made.
On the Hungarian page is a schematic with all the places in two languages.
It seems to me a good idea of ​​the first villages twice to exist. It is first important to the villages of geo and provide the same villages with each other by means of a link. When that is done (and then we have a few years later) only of the villages, a village making. Otherwise you will have many years of a mess.--Lidewij 08:53, 5 March 2013 (EST)

Veel Oost Europeanen zijn in de 19e eeuw geëmigreerd naar Amerika. De oude namen vind ik dan ook een goed idee.
Mijn idee is: dorp voor dorp samenvoegen door op de ‘Hongaarse’ pagina enige informatie te zetten met heel duidelijk de verschillende namen met data wanneer men deze naam gebruikte. De Slowaakse naam / pagina wordt een redirect gemaakt. De doorverwijzigingen worden voorzien van een de juiste categorie zodat deze namen in de categorie in groene tekst te vinden zijn.
Wanneer alle dorpen van de streek zijn verplaatst en de gewest pagina leeg is, kan van de streeknaam / het gewest ook een doorverwijzing gemaakt worden.
Op de Hongaarse pagina wordt een schema gemaakt met alle plaatsen in twee talen.
Het lijkt mij een goed idee de dorpen eerst tweemaal te laten bestaan. Het is eerst van belang de dorpen van een geo te voorzien en de zelfde dorpen met elkaar te verbinden door middel van een link. Wanneer dat gedaan is ( en dan zijn we wel een paar jaar verder) pas van de dorpen, een dorp maken. Anders heb je vele jaren een rommeltje. Groet. --Lidewij 08:53, 5 March 2013 (EST)

Place:Gömör, Hungary [5 mrt 2013]

There is a problem by Place:Gömör, Hungary should be renamed to Place:Gömör-Kishont, Hungary (the places must move along), but there is already a Place:Gömör-Kishont, Hungary. I have not moved, so you can see the old situation. Administrators have the right tool to fix this. Groet, --Lidewij 07:24, 3 March 2013 (EST)

Regarding Place:Gömör, Hungary, I renamed that to Place:Gömör-Kishont, Hungary. The places listed under that page should be renamed automatically during the evening. --Jennifer (JBS66) 06:14, 5 March 2013 (EST)
Jennifer, dankjewel.--Lidewij 07:56, 5 March 2013 (EST)

Place description list [3 March 2013]

Could the place description "Borough" be revised to "Borough, burgh"?

Scotland uses burgh instead of town or municipality. This addition would allow the quick identification.

The Scots even had "police burghs" and "royal burghs" and "burghs of barony"--I am still getting my head around the varying definitions. All were dispensed with in 1975 by the Local Government (Scotland) Act 1973 although they are still used in descriptive material. --goldenoldie 09:29, 3 March 2013 (EST)

Places in France ... an horror ! [15 apr 2013]

It's a very big problem ! What a lot of errors ! The information from Getty "inhabited place" is very ridiculos ! All is mixed up and confused ! Old communes with alt names, etc ... Only one terrible example : Place:Amiens, Somme, France ... "Inhabited place" + "Marche-Allowarde" (it is an existing/current commune, not near Amiens but near Roye, in the department Somme) + "Petit-Saint-Jean" (only an old parish of Amiens ... why the other parts and parishes of Amiens are not given ?)

The number of departments has also changed (region of Paris + Corse) since some years ! Why was the date "in the 1960's" taken and adopted as reference ? Amicalement - Marc ROUSSEL - --Markus3 11:16, 12 April 2013 (EDT)

March-Allowarde and Petit-Saint-Jean as alt-names on Amiens are mistakes that happened with the automated bot. You can remove these. The reason they were added as alt-names is because the Family History Library Catalog says underneath references "Use for" (see the previous FHLC link). This only meant some of the records for Marche-Allowarde could be found in Amiens.
The reason for 1965 was "The year 1965 is chosen because it is the year used by the Family History Library Catalog". The "1900 rule" is a general guide. The reasoning is that people researching family ancestry are going to reference archive material for historical places (or an historical arrangement of places). An example is the place Wirdum in the Netherlands. Wirdum was in Leeuwarderadeel until 1944. The people that I am searching for, and entering into WR, lived in Wirdum when it was a part of Leeuwarderadeel. This is the 'historical' location. We can indicate that Wirdum is now in Leeuwarden by adding that as an 'also located in' place. But the page TITLE would reflect the historical location. WR needed to choose a very general year - so 1900 was chosen. This year does not work for all countries (Place:Indonesia for instance). --Jennifer (JBS66) 12:03, 12 April 2013 (EDT)
Jennifer (JBS66), I'm not sure I understand everything (my english is so poor and GoogleTranslator is always very stupid). We need to see each practical case. Amicalement - Marc ROUSSEL - --Markus3 14:57, 12 April 2013 (EDT)
Practical example: Place:Rambouillet, Yvelines, France. I think this is wrong - the title should be Rambouillet, Seine-et-Oise, France. Rambouillet was in the département of Seine-et-Oise historically, not Yvelines. It appears many of the places in Seine-et-Oise are titled incorrectly because Getty was used instead of FHLC.
Another mistake: Place:Seine-et-Oise, Île-de-France, France. If WR removed all of the regions, why does the title contain Île-de-France? --Jennifer (JBS66) 09:37, 13 April 2013 (EDT)
Rambouillet (Commune), Yvelines (Department 78) , France. Sorry, Number 78 was formerly assigned to Seine-et-Oise. --what date ? Lidewij 09:58, 13 April 2013 (EDT)
"Yvelines was created from the western part of the defunct department of Seine-et-Oise on 1 January 1968 in accordance with a law passed on 10 January 1964 and a décret d'application (a decree specifying how a law should be enforced) from 26 February 1965." --Jennifer (JBS66) 10:09, 13 April 2013 (EDT)
I must go now, more tomorrow --Lidewij 10:15, 13 April 2013 (EDT)

Places in France [15 April 2013]

Marc the hierarchy of the places in France, is incalculable. Yugoslavia and Poland are much more difficult. The place of 1900 is a priority.
At Special:Whatlinkshere, all personal events that have occurred on this geographical location Sometimes stand under a redirect.

In 1900, France was divided into political municipalities. France is divided into political municipalities from ± 1790. The name of the municipalities is usually the name of the main place of/in the municipality. The municipalities are the basis of WeRelate. From 1790 notes/acts of birth, were married and death in those municipalities. The names of the political communities are important for the genealogist. For the separation of church and state administration (± 1790) was carried out by the parishes and notary services. The situation for 1790/1900 I usually try to take in the description. It is important that one understands faster the info in werelate, the place wording in official acts/records. So when former municipalities, it is important to note the dates.

For the Netherlands, the names, municipality, former municipality, city, village, neighborhood, hamlet, etc. For France, I think that should. We should discuss what needed. Groet,--Lidewij 05:48, 15 April 2013 (EDT)

  1. "Special:Whatlinkshere" as tool ? It is not practical to search or find a place/date ! Better is to create and "play" with categories !
  2. "The place of 1900 is a priority." ... Sorry, I am not at all convinced, but I am cautious in my opinion ... My English level is really low, and I must finally understand better how the website works and why these choices were made.
  3. For the moment, I do not understand the "Anglo-Saxon" distinctions you do with "community", etc. ... the word used administratively in France is "commune". For the most extreme cases, the municipality created in 1790 took the name of the parish, except for (large) cities of course.
  4. You wrote "political communities" ... the term does not exist. This is not "political", but administrative !
  5. Yes of course. It is important and necessary to note the dates, but not like that, I think. The place itself did not change in 1790. It is only the adminsitrative organization which changed. And the people who wrote, and the "official place" where the registers were kept.
  6. I resume ... we have a big problem of vocabulary !
Amicalement - Marc ROUSSEL - --Markus3 14:39, 15 April 2013 (EDT)
An example : Place:Agnières, Somme, France. I read now : "Located in Somme, France (1790 - 1972)"
For me, it means : Before 1790 was Agnières not in France ... Where ? After 1972, it is in France no more ... where ? Such a presentation, such a formulation is (for me) problematic and illogical.
I read too : "Also located in Hescamps, Somme, France (1972 - )" ! In France, we say "rattaché à ... en 1972", or "réuni à ... en 1972" or "absorbé par ... en 1972".
Marc ROUSSEL - --Markus3 15:55, 15 April 2013 (EDT)

Marc, I also make use of translation tools. 45 to 50 years ago, I have learned three languages ​​at school.(fr,De,En) I'm dyslexic, and instead focus on what languages ​​less important.
WhatLinksHere is a great tool for me to see which families and which sources are listed on certain locations. What Links Here I use sometimes as a control agent. I use the categories, but for other data Whatlinkshere. This kind of feature in other pedigree programs better. Anloo, Drenthe
Netherlands was around 1800, part of France, which the Netherlands has the same public system as France. With genealogy you have to do with acts civil registry of those municipalities, that when it is useful to know which municipalities in which period there were in a particular region.
Of course, were the locations inhabited and generally with the same name. It's not about the existence of the place or the name, but the existence of the administrative council. 1972 Agnières eliminated. Agnières went with three other municipality in a newly created municipality Hescamps. Groet, Lidewij 17:57, 15 April 2013 (EDT)

Perhaps it would help if someone explained what the hierarchy of France is for these place pages. When I look at Agnières, I see that it is both a village and a municipality. Should that be divided into two different pages since one still exists and the other does not? (Agnières, Somme, France for the municipality, and Agnières, Agnières, Somme, France for the village?) -Moverton 18:17, 15 April 2013 (EDT)

"Type" for places [15 April 2013]

Moved from here

Where can I find all the offered possiblities for "Type" on the place pages ? For example, I don't know if "ancient city" is correct for a village that was a "commune" until 1972. The village exists today, with the houses and people, but it "joins" an other little village to make a new place for the administration. Does it perhaps mean "abandoned or destroyed locality" ? Thanks ! Amicalement - Marc ROUSSEL - --Markus3 15:48, 12 April 2013 (EDT)

The place types are here: MediaWiki:Place types. Only users with admin rights can edit it. If you suggest additions/changes to that page, you can leave a message on its talk page. --Jennifer (JBS66) 16:57, 12 April 2013 (EDT)
Fine ! I will have some questions in a few days ! Amicalement - Marc ROUSSEL - --Markus3 01:22, 15 April 2013 (EDT)
One first question ! See Place:Le Bois-de-Cise, Somme, France. I choosed "village", but this does not appear in the list/column on the right in this page Place:Somme, France. Amicalement - Marc ROUSSEL - --Markus3 04:10, 15 April 2013 (EDT)
Place:Le Bois-de-Cise, Somme, France stays in "inhabited place" ! This village ist "habited". Marc ROUSSEL - --Markus3 04:15, 15 April 2013 (EDT)
I think it's better consultation about the places in France, moving to WeRelate talk:Place patrol --Lidewij 04:51, 15 April 2013 (EDT)
OK. Marc ROUSSEL - --Markus3 13:51, 15 April 2013 (EDT)

Marc - Please can I check - "Inhabited" means "habité"; "Inhabité" - "Un-inhabited". See http://fr.wiktionary.org/wiki/uninhabited#Anglais AndrewRT 14:37, 15 April 2013 (EDT)

Yes, indeed ! I am sorry ! But ... Marc ROUSSEL - --Markus3 15:18, 15 April 2013 (EDT)

City, Town, Village, Community, City or Town, Town or Village, and Inhabited place are all "grouped together" under the heading Inhabited Place in the right column. --Jennifer (JBS66) 15:28, 15 April 2013 (EDT)

Places for farms [5 August 2013]

Could anyone here help with this query please? AndrewRT 14:48, 5 August 2013 (EDT)

Gotlands, Gotland, Sweden [8 September 2013]

In response to this support question, I was trying to rename Gotlands, Gotland, Sweden to Gotland, Sweden. I received a "Deletion required" message, and I'm wondering if this is the proper approach. --Jennifer (JBS66) 16:20, 8 September 2013 (EDT)

Volunteer for Cemeteries in Canada [18 October 2014]

I'm willing to help out by reviewing cemetery pages in Canada.--RGMoffat 19:22, 23 September 2014 (UTC)

Shortly after volunteering I learned i need to have major surgery before the end of the month. Not sure when I will be up to speed again. Rick--RGMoffat 18:24, 18 October 2014 (UTC)

Welcome! We'll add you to the list and you can do whatever you can. --pkeegstra 20:40, 18 October 2014 (UTC)

Quoting from Wikipedia [31 May 2016]

It's great to have a source from which we can copy a paragraph or two describing a place or its history, but we ought to remember that Wikipedia descriptions are written by volunteers like ourselves. They may be experts in their fields, but they may not be experts in expressing themselves. I just came across this sentence in Mortlake which is on the River Thames in London, England.

"The annual Boat Race between the rowing teams of Oxford and Cambridge Universities finishes at Mortlake every April."

The Boat Race is one of those big events in the British sporting calendar, just like the Superbowl in American football or The Masters in golf. For that reason it deserves a quick mention in Wikipedia if not necessarily in WeRelate. But it is a one-afternoon event and ending the sentence "every April" infers it takes place over a period of a few days at least. (Not only that, but this year it was in late March.) The facts might be better expressed as follows:

"The annual Boat Race between the rowing teams of Oxford and Cambridge Universities is held early in spring and the finishing line is at Mortlake."

Some Wikipedia writers string an awful lot of sentences together like this. They also talk about villages or towns when they really mean the area defined by the local administration boundaries--which might incorporate an area beyond the built-up centre. This leaves the WeRelate user whose predecessors lived on farms in a quandary--just where did they live? What church did they travel to for a baptism or where did they report a birth to civil authorities? How was their address defined in a census?

Another problem with Wikipedia (and here my experience with their British section is really showing) is their incessant discussions of places as found in the Domesday Book (of 1086). The writers are reporting history and that's all very good, but we are looking at genealogy. Very few of us are tracing our own lines back to the 11th century (complete with sources, don't forget). It can take several paragraphs of a Wikipedia history section to get down to what occurred in the 18th and 19th centuries--the stuff that may give us a clue as to why our forebears were in the place to begin with--particularly if their parents spent their lives somewhere else. Then, when Wikipedia does get to the 19th century it covers a murder that reached the national press, leaving us without a clue as to how the rest of the population earned their living (or didn't). If that is what you find in a Wikipedia history section, it's not worth repeating. WeRelate users need only a short review of a place's history (with links to where they can find more). However, if the Wikipedia writer traces the lord of the manor through two or more generations, or mentions someone who made a scientific discovery, or authored a famous book--that could be clues to someone's genealogical questing--and worth quoting.

For these reasons I decided a long time ago that quoting Wikipedia verbatim is not always a good policy. All the same I want to give credit where credit was due. My introduction to a semi-quoted piece from Wikipedia is :the text in this section is based on an article in Wikipedia and the credit template {{wikipedia-notice|---}} remains at the bottom of our WeRelate page.

We should use {{moreinfo wikipedia|---}} more. It is possible to add a sentence to this template indicating what part of an article has a really meaty bit which is worth a read if not a duplication in WeRelate.--Goldenoldie 07:08, 26 May 2016 (UTC)

These are good points. I responded on my talk page, but I will respond here as well to give the discussion more visibility. Perhaps instead of quoting Wikipedia, should we have the computer remove the Wikipedia text and replace it with a moreinfo template that simply links the WeRelate page to the Wikipedia page? What do people think about this?--Dallan 01:20, 29 May 2016 (UTC)

Sounds good to me.--SkippyG 01:33, 31 May 2016 (UTC)

That does seem a better method.--Rhian 07:25, 31 May 2016 (UTC)

Committee Roll Call & Update [2 December 2016]

Hello - I am in the process of updating the information on the status of our admin structure and maintenance committees. The members of this committee are currently listed as:

  • Rmg, Liason to the Overview Committee
  • JBS66
  • Klaas
  • Andrew
  • Pkeegstra
  • RWMeyer
  • Goldenoldie
  • RBMoffat
  • SkippyG

Please respond here to let us know that you are still active on this committee and whether or not you wish to continue in this capacity.

To help us quantify the work that is being done, please include a brief list of the tasks that you perform most frequently and an estimate of the average amount of time per month that you currently spend on these tasks.

Also, this committee is in need of a new Liason. Would one of you be willing to step into that role?
Thank you in advance for your help, --cos1776 22:34, 16 October 2016 (UTC)

[response moved here from User talk:Cos1776:] Hi. Count me in as willing to be on the committee, but circumstances do not permit me to chair it. regards, --Goldenoldie 18:10, 17 October 2016 (UTC)
I'd like to remain on this committee. Among other things, when I see someone looking for a township in MI, IN, IL, IA I'll do the whole set of townships for the county in question and perhaps some of its neighbors. --pkeegstra 09:56, 19 October 2016 (UTC)

I 'm still willing to work on cemeteries in Ontario, and as time permits, the rest of Canada. PS , I think I am the RBMoffat above, but the second initial is G. Rick. --RGMoffat 20:13, 2 December 2016 (UTC)

Thank you, Rick, and sorry for the typo in your name. I will update the page. --cos1776 21:19, 2 December 2016 (UTC)

I'd love to add my name. I've done a lot in Ohio & Pennsylvania, New York, Michigan, adding twps, cemeteries, etc. and New England, also. Neal --SkippyG 21:26, 2 December 2016 (UTC)

Thank you, Neal. Please go ahead and update the page, so that you can describe those areas in whichever way you think best (or leave them off, if you'd prefer).
BTW - way to go, Place Patrol! :) How can we transmit your enthusiasm to some of the other patrols? --cos1776 22:03, 2 December 2016 (UTC)

Likely easier to describe the sources at my disposal: more than a dozen Ohio county histories, several Pennsylvania county histories, a fairly well-stocked library Genealogy Dept. in the first seat of the Ohio Connecticut Western Reserve a few blocks away. Also, I have numerous friends who are still active genealogical librarians, Ohio & elsewhere, willing to scour their records with mild nudging. I also visit The Archives here where all the early records of incorporation are housed for the Western Reserve, which includes all the present day counties of the aforesaid. Neal--SkippyG 23:40, 2 December 2016 (UTC)

Strange place page [7 March 2017]

Place:Marriage of Samuel to Martha Upham in Malden, Massachusetts, United States

Would someone on Place Patrol please look at the above page created by a relatively new contributor. Just came home from a short hospital stay, and I'm not ready to tackle this one. Neal--SkippyG 19:23, 7 March 2017 (UTC)

Thanks Neal. I left a message for the original poster a few days ago and was giving him a chance to respond. --cos1776 21:55, 7 March 2017 (UTC)
Follow up: Fixed. Another message left for original poster. --cos1776 22:59, 7 March 2017 (UTC)

Found Suspect Place Pages [14 March 2017]

Since I don't normally review place names unless they are Townships or Cemeteries, I ran across a few that I'm pretty sure need to be deleted, but I thought it would be better to bring them here and let the experts handle them.

Place:Bergstrom AFB, Travis, Texas, United States
Place:Villa Siesta Retirement Village, Travis, Texas, United States

Thank you!--khaentlahn 22:48, 13 March 2017 (UTC)

I wouldn't exactly call these suspect pages, but pages made by someone who hasn't read through the place patrol instructions as carefully as they might. I know there are plans to revise/rewrite our instructions, but I haven't seen any recent changes.
One thing we ought to emphasize is the use of the description box adjacent to the placename box. The placename box is for names of places in our database, the description box is for any additional material such as a street address, a farm name in a rural area, the baptismal church, the words "probably" or "possibly", etc. The second of these examples should certainly be rejigged so that Travis is the first word in the place box; the first one is dependent on how large and important the air force base is/was. And is Travis a county or a town? --Goldenoldie 09:53, 14 March 2017 (UTC)
Looks like "military base" is an actual category, so that page should be fine. Not sure about retirement communities, but if it functions as a place for the post office, we should probably accept it. --pkeegstra 10:42, 14 March 2017 (UTC)

Use of Rhode Island Cemetery Designation Numbers as WR Placenames [13 May 2017]

I received the following note from cos1776 last week advising that there were close to 100 pages in the "Wanted Category" page under the Surname-in-Place heading of "Category:Knight in Historical Cemetery." Rather than highlight this maintenance issue as a future WeRelate Crowdsourcing Challenge as suggested, I thought it might be more appropriately handled as a Data Quality Improvement maintenance task or as a WeRelate:Place patrol issue.

While doing old GEDCOM page cleanup the other week, I came across a series of pages uploaded in 2008 and hardly touched since that might make for an interesting crowdsourcing project. Basically, it looks like the contributor has done a fair amount of research for some of his people, but the citations are not in our standard format, so pretty much all pages need attention and sources. One part of the project is particularly interesting, however. For burial entries, he refers to all cemeteries by the index number assigned to them by the Rhode Island Historical Cemetery Commission. (Ex. Person:Caroline Knight (69) is buried in PV005, aka Find A Grave: Grace Church Cemetery, for which a WR page does not yet exist. So the task has several parts:

  1. Create WR cemetery pages for these RI cemeteries. I highly recommend including the full index number in the alternate name field as well to allow them to be found via search or matched, if entered by index number in the future. Also, the RIHCC site has a wealth of historical information on each cemetery that FAG does not, so our pages should include links to both external sites and perhaps some of the historical info as well.
  2. Update all existing cemetery place entries from this user (and maybe others) to link to the correct WR cemetery page. Some of the people pages to fix can be found in Wanted Category:Knight in Historical Cemetery, so fixing them clears out this bad category as well.

I did some of these. Here's an example of a page I've updated, Person:Annie Knight (55). This particular page could use some more sources, vitals, censuses, etc., but it demonstrates how stopping at FAG for her burial info without looking at the cemetery record at RIHCC would have caused you to miss the additional info such as cause of death, lead on birthplace, etc. The historical cemetery pages would make an interesting project on their own, but integrating those with existing Person page cleanup and bad Category cleanup gets us a three-fer! :)
What do you think? --cos1776 15:28, 8 May 2017 (UTC)

I noticed the same a couple months ago while cleaning-up the "Wanted Category" page, and actually editing a couple of them. So I know exactly what you are talking about. But it seemed pretty convoluted and too "high maintenance" for the time I've had available. I was going to do a few of them at a time, creating corrective links for the various abbreviated cemetery locations to ease the edit process, but just haven't made time for it yet.
I think that such a maintenance chore would be better added to the Data Quality Improvement maintenance page. Next month I could replace the current Brick Walls link on the main page with a link to the maintenance project specifically identifying what needs to be done to the convoluted RI cemetery links. --BobC 19:22, 9 May 2017 (UTC)

In the past week progress has been made. At this point there are fewer than 50 of the Rhode Island Historical Cemetery Commission designation number placenames remaining (User:Cos1776 and I quite a few many of the placenames), but we could use further attention in correcting the remaining placename entries. As a cross-reference, the RI designation numbers can be searched at this RIHCC Cemetery Code search page.

In addition to the updated page mentioned by User:Cos1776 above, examples of some of the pages I recently corrected are Person:Andrew Knight (41), Person:Florence Knight (61), Person:George Knight (228), and Person:Mary Knight (492).

Thanks for your attention and assistance. --BobC 16:38, 13 May 2017 (UTC)

Wanted pages [2 July 2017]

The discussion above, dealing with Rhode Island cemeteries, contained several comments that dealt with place pages and editing in general--and pointed me to some interesting pages of WR that I never knew about.

But it also led me to take another look at Admin>Special pages>Wanted Pages, a list, for the most part, of incorrectly named places and sources. At present there are 1000 places in the list with the number of links to a page descending from almost 4,000 to 46. Thankfully, the quantities at the top of the list have decreased since I first joined WR in 2012. But there is still a lot to do.

However, could many of the Wanted Pages could disappear with cautious use of #redirect? As a trial, I took Place:St. Stephen, N.B. Canada, checked out its county in New Brunswick with Wikipedia, redirected it to Place:St. Stephen, Charlotte, New Brunswick, Canada, and removed a wanted place with 178 links. The redirect is now listed in the "What links here" list for St. Stephen in Charlotte County along with all the Persons for which it was used, and one could work from there to improve the work of User:Elainep which is highly detailed (if Alfred Price is anything to go by).

How many other places could be removed from the current list with a redirect? I noticed "Place:Birmingham, Warwickshire", "Place:Philadelphia", and "Place:Indiana USA". All these might still be red-linked on the Person pages, but the person pages might be found more easily in "Search". Many others might need a fair bit of extra checking by someone who knows German and Germany, or Quebec and its geography. One of the entries was "Auschwitz". These 60 people really deserve a tidying of their pages.

But, is redirecting a good idea? I'd like some comments, please. --Goldenoldie 09:50, 17 May 2017 (UT)

Thanks for bringing up the issue. I see others have joined in correcting, editing and redirecting some of those links. I think the redirect method is appropriate for incomplete place page names or for page links where places are named differently.
But, related to the above posting, there are multiple Wanted Pages for various inappropriate place names, such as Place:Unknown ‎(3,734 links), Place:Farmer ‎(840 links), Place:See Notes ‎(717 links), Place:? ‎(686 links), Place:- ‎(284 links), Place:Social Security ‎(224 links), Place:See Note Page ‎(181 [now 0 -cos1776] links), Place:Died Young ‎(168 [now 0 -cos1776] links), Place:Deceased ‎(166 links), Place:Young ‎(160 [in process of being reduced -cos1776] links), Place:() ‎(149 [now 0 -cos1776] links), Place:Carpenter ‎(133 links), Place:2nd wife ‎(129 links), and Place:Semlak At Time Of Marriage ‎(129 links).
In my opinion it does little good in redirecting these to some "unknown" or "incomplete" page, or even in deleting most of these entries, because these and other erroneous versions seem to just keep reappearing in new GEDCOM downloads. It might be better to prohibit such entries when made or prior to download/upload with auto-advisory notices, such as an auto error message every time one of these are entered. Since the above list has the greatest number of links, those could be easily caught that way. As unique new ones appear, they could be corrected individually with careful screening at time of entry or data improvement reviews.
Perhaps someone with more advanced programming experience could opine on this subject. --BobC 16:32, 23 May 2017 (UTC)
How much checking of GEDCOMs is done manually? Could "the inspector" point out a few repetitive errors to potential users and tell them to correct their work with "find and replace" and resubmit the GEDCOM? And/or take a look at our place structure for the country in question and revise accordingly. Just a thought.
One error in programming I have discovered while correcting placenames in other people's family trees. If a Person is listed as him/herself and also as half a Family, and red links are turned blue both for the Person's details and the marriage place, the couple remain in the "What links here" list for the red-linked place, despite having perfectly clean entries. --Goldenoldie 20:42, 23 May 2017 (UTC)
I apologize for this delayed response. I have been away and wanted to both think this through some more and run some tests when I returned. Basically redirecting here works just the way it was intended for common wikis, and I think it would be a fine solution for us if our site didn't have some of the customized features that it does, or we were able to change those features more easily.
For example - When you create a redirect, you are not updating any of the text that was originally entered. So, sticking with Goldenoldie's example above, this means that all of the people affected by the redirect of Place:St. Stephen, N.B. Canada still have that same text string entered in their Place fields. It has not been replaced by or amended with the correct text string (Place:St. Stephen, Charlotte, New Brunswick, Canada), as would have been done during the place matching part of the GEDCOM review process. [The page will remain in this state until the next time it is opened.] This means that the "canned" Search for Surname in Place in the left menu of the Person and Family pages no longer works [will also not work] properly [until the page has been opened]. If you look at Person:Alfred Price (3) and click on "Price in St. Stephen" in the left menu, you will see that his page does not get returned. This is because the parameters for that search feature have been customized. They are pre-set to capture the redirect and to search for "Exact matches only". Since Alfred's page was not actually edited, the search engine can no longer find it using the pre-set parameters. For comparison, look at Person:Alfred Price (1) for whom the Place links were manually fixed. His Surname in Place feature still works, because his page was actually edited.
This could be solved with a change in code for that feature. Our hurdle today is that programming changes are still hard to get done. It is easy enough to manually change the parameters to search successfully for these types of situations, but it is certainly not obvious that you would have to do so. Since we are currently locked into the pre-populated search link, and it is prominently displayed on each Person and Family page, we need to keep it in working order. Therefore, I think redirecting these Place pages is not a good [the preferred] solution right now.
Please note updates to paragraph above. --cos1776 14:53, 28 June 2017 (UTC)
While testing, I completed a number of these types of Place page redirects, so I am responsible for many of the strike-thrus that you see on the Wanted pages list this week. I originally thought that it was a good solution and that the redirect would update the text in each data field (as it does when you Rename Person or Family pages). I gave it a few days, in case it was time-sensitive, but it has been several days now with no further updates, so I will go back and undo the changes I made before this weekend when the list gets refreshed.
Regarding the other types of Wanted pages, as BobC pointed out, sometimes a link is just plain bad, and a redirect wouldn't make sense anyway, because we don't want a page like that to exist in the first place. Most of these links date to the early days when there was no Place and Source matching during upload and the quality standards were lower. It is frustrating that so many pages like this were created when we now know how easy it is to prevent. The solution right now is still page-by-page manual editing to correct all bad links. It can be accomplished slightly faster by re-uploading a scrubbed file, but there are other pitfalls to consider when doing that. One bit of bright news is that the total number of links affected counts both affected Person and Family pages, so the actual number of pages to edit is usually smaller.
As far as these errors continuing to come in via new GEDCOMs, I can say that the problem has been greatly reduced over the last year for general uploads. It will never be completely solved without better control over the upload process, either manually or via software. Unfortunately, for many years, many reviewers let in pretty much anything that passed the "Warnings" test, which doesn't include quality standards for Places or Sources. Anyone with admin rights can review and upload files without oversight, so unless you just happen to be watching the review queue in real time, you may never know that a file had gone thru the cycle or who was responsible for letting it in. Not all reviewers are careful or willing to take the time necessary to ensure that the data is clean or that most Places and Sources are matched. I can only speak for myself when I say that I am one of the careful reviewers and that I do spend (probably too much) time fixing these types of bad links before the data enters our database. I have tried in the past to ask new users to do it themselves, but understandably most times the learning curve is too steep, and they get discouraged. Anything we can do to encourage them to stick around an be productive contributors is a good thing, so I have taken to providing a lot of help for the first upload. --cos1776 16:00, 24 May 2017 (UTC)

I'd like to thank both BobC and cos1776 for taking the time to consider the redirect question. I have aired this problem before and had no feedback. I appreciate knowing more about how these errors occurred and how difficult it might be to put them to rights.

With the "St. Stephen" question I only outlined the first step of my attempts to improve these entries. Once the original red-linked entries are joined together into a "blue-linked place", I can go through them one by one moving them to the proper placename. But I am careful not to do the first redirect for a group that I do not have the time or the motivation to correct in a 24-hour period.

I agree that the "Place:Unknown", "Place:Farmer", etc, are a different kettle of fish. The good news is that since 2012 the number of "Place:Farmer" entries has dropped by a couple of thousand. Someone has been helping WR by carrying out what must have been a very boring task.

Regards, --Goldenoldie 10:04, 28 May 2017 (UTC)

Follow-up: "Place:See Note Page" is now free of links and will go away. I removed the links to these pages in our discussions above as well, so that those links will not prevent the undesired pages from going away. I am also still working to clear the Places referred to above that had been redirected. This will take some time, but I did capture them from last week's Wanted pages list, so I have a checklist to go by. --cos1776 22:21, 2 June 2017 (UTC)
Place:() is clear. --cos1776 13:05, 3 June 2017 (UTC)

When I first raised this topic 2-3 weeks ago the top 1000 of the Wanted List included places and sources wanted down to 46 uses. The score is now 45 uses, and looking through the individual entries at the bottom of the pile I spied some awfully simple corrections. However, I am wondering where "Werth" is. My curiosity may get the better of me soon, but improving New Brunswick, Canada, has priority at the moment. I notice St. Basile, NB, is a high red-link. --Goldenoldie 14:20, 3 June 2017 (UTC)

I have been working with Wanted pages again. "School Teacher" was made a "place" and then each of its 45 entries was removed to the Description Box. Various other red-linked places in these entries were tidied up along the way. "School Teacher" is now awaiting speedy delete.

Then I tackled Havre-Aubert, Isle de la Madeleine Quebec. Part of its problem was a missing comma, but this is compounded by its lack of French accented characters. Place:Havre-Aubert, Îles-de-la-Madeleine, Québec, Canada is in our list, so the one without the comma and accents has been redirected there, but I did not make any changes to the 157 individual entries. There may be errors amongst the natives of this surprisingly highly populated place, but knowledge of French-Canadian genealogy is not one of my strong points.

Lastly I looked at Wanted place:Kortrijk. WR lists two Kortrijks--one in Belgium, one in the Netherlands. Would one of our Dutch contingent like to check these out?

This note is just to show the variety of problems that can appear on the Wanted Pages List.

/cheers, --Goldenoldie 14:40, 23 June 2017 (UTC)

Follow up: the page "Place:School Teacher" has been deleted. Please note that there is no need to create a page in order to link it to Speedy Delete. Once the links are resolved, the title will no longer appear on the Wanted pages list, and the task is complete! If the page gets mistakenly created, anyone with admin rights can delete it once the links are resolved. Thanks again to everyone who is working on this task. --cos1776 20:06, 23 June 2017 (UTC)

Happy Sunday morning! I am very glad to report that there has been a significant dent in the Wanted pages list since last week. As my kids say, "I'd like to give a big shout out to" everyone who has really stepped it up this week to tackle that list. A couple of tips when you are working on these:

  • The best way to resolve the bad links is to update the text on each linking page, so that it points directly to the correct page.
  • A redirect can be used, but it is not the preferred choice, because it does not update each linking page to point directly to the correct page. It points to the page you are redirecting. If you feel you must redirect, please remember to resolve any double redirects that you may be creating. Our wiki software does not follow double redirects all the way through which creates "slow, unpleasant experiences for the reader, waste(s) server resources, and make(s) the navigational structure of the site confusing." (Wikipedia gives a good overview on why you should not leave double redirects behind)
  • For ambiguous places, please do not guess at the location, unless you are really sure that it will apply to all of the linked pages. Many times you can browse some connected pages to determine the most probable location, but when in doubt, leave it alone. It is not helping to link to the wrong page. We might want to consider flagging these to say that at least one person has already examined them and is unable to determine where exactly the original poster meant. We could also decide how to handle them going forward. Do we want to move them up to a larger known jurisdiction if possible, or leave them as unknowns?
  • If you are editing individual pages, please be aware that this site uses an auto-matching program to make a best guess for the places entered. Many of these older pages pre-date the installation of the auto-match, so it only gets applied to them the next time they are edited. When you make your edits, please take an extra second or two to not only make sure that your edits are correct, but also that any auto-matching edits that get applied will be correct. The program is very good, but not perfect.

The next couple of weeks should continue to see dramatic improvements in cleaning up old bad place links. Eventually, I can imagine that this will only need to be monitored every few weeks or so for the rogue bad apple that slips in. Thanks again, --cos1776 14:38, 2 July 2017 (UTC)

Towns and Townships [23 June 2017]

Hi Place Patrol members, I'm currently checking places in Ohio and surrounding states, making sure townships and other locations are accurate. County pages using the township designation are all listed in a section named "Township", whereas states (ie New York) using the equivalent "Town" do not have a separate listing, and are lumped into the "Inhabited Places" category. Thoughts ? Should the "Town" category be added to County pages ? Neal--SkippyG 15:10, 12 June 2017 (UTC)

It varies from state to state, but in the states I'm familiar with based on the 1790 land law townships are an unique class of space-filling jurisdiction and populated place => village => town => city forms a continuum (which is not space-filling). So at least for those states it makes sense to me to distinguish townships from populated places etc. --pkeegstra 18:26, 12 June 2017 (UTC)
City, town and village have always been grouped together under inhabited places, but hamlets, settlements, communities, parishes, and boroughs and burg(h)s come out separately. Go figure. There are a lot of changes I would really like to make in the way Contained Places are presented, but that's a programming problem.
The definition of these terms varies with the country in which they are located, and, anywhere, one place can increase or reduce in size over time. I prefer to work with the type of administration--and whether a specific type of municipal administration holds documents we genealogists might like to inspect.
Explaining to our users that "town" in one state is equivalent to "township" in another will be quite a problem.
/cheers, --Goldenoldie 18:48, 12 June 2017 (UTC) (Pat)

I'll add a thought or two. Though both "township" and "town" may not be equivalent, both can contain villages, hamlets, boroughs, cities, etc. Especially in the early formation of counties, the "Town" may be the only identification of an area, before any village, etc. comes into being. Also, particularly in New England, a village is often of the same name as the town: a list of towns would be an easy survey of the county, and discourage selecting an Inhabited place over a Town.--SkippyG 21:55, 12 June 2017 (UTC)

Indeed, you both are right; the New England towns which act as containers for villages look a lot like Northwest Territory townships. How to implement that in a system which imposes the same list criteria for all place pages is the challenge. Maybe no different types of places should be listed together. --pkeegstra 10:31, 13 June 2017 (UTC)

Keeping in mind, all the concerns, etc. expressed, instead of creating a category "Towns" on each County page, is there any objection to adding "(town)" in those US states where applicable, without removing them from "Inhabited Place" ? I'm not absolutely sure what administrative or genealogical value "Towns" served in NE, but as far as "Townships" are concerned in Ohio, in the 1800s several special state census, and the oversee of some Vital Records experiments (1854-55) & 1865 were often conducted by Township Trustees mostly in the rural areas. Now these Trustees are primarily concerned with road & signage maintenance, snow removal, township buildings and public cemeteries. I've also seen "Town meetings" records in New York state, determining boundaries, conducting farm surveys, population surveys (w/o names), etc.Neal --SkippyG 16:44, 13 June 2017 (UTC)

Right now the policy in the 1790 land law jurisdictions is that if the same name occurs as a populated place/village/city and a township, the township gets the extra designation '(township)'. (But if there is no ambiguity the designation is not added.) It makes perfect sense to do the same for towns in states where towns serve the same function. So in states where it is applicable, to break ambiguity (but not if unambiguous) the town gets the specifier '(town)'. I believe there are places where that has already been done, e.g. Oyster Bay (town). (Of course, that doesn't guide the eye to those entries on the combined list which are towns though unambiguous.) --pkeegstra 10:35, 14 June 2017 (UTC)

Taking in all the discussion above, I plan on continuing to survey the states with "townships", adding (township) where needed to distinguish from an Inhabited Place, village, etc. I've also begun to do the same for states where "town" is a similar designation, only adding (town) to distinguish from other identically named places within the county (this occurs often in Township states, not as often in Town states). If I had my wish, I'd still like to see a "Town" category on the applicable County page. And...would like to see a small notice on the Main page when a policy is adopted or amended, linked to the change. This could apply to a statement re: township vs. town; most likely would apply to committees other than Place Patrol, but could serve as "educating" contributors. Neal--SkippyG 16:42, 23 June 2017 (UTC)

To redirect or not to redirect - that is the question [28 June 2017]

I have learned something interesting over the last couple of days that has caused me to rethink my position on whether or not redirecting incorrect Place page titles to correct Place page titles is a good solution for us to update old incorrect and unlinked Place entries. As a result, I updated some of my previous comments in the Wanted pages section above. While it is true that a redirect will not immediately update the original text entered in the Place field, it appears that it will eventually update the text the next time the page is opened and closed. This will happen regardless of whether or not any editing is done or the page is actively saved. (Ex. I opened and closed Person:Silas Collins (1) without doing anything else, and now the text in his birth Place field is updated to reflect the redirect and his left menu "Surname in Place" search works.)

So, now we know that redirecting does have the potential to eventually put the preferred data into the Place field with a pipe, in addition to creating a working link. That is good. But it also means that pages that receive no attention (of which there are many) will remain in a sort of limbo and not be browsable by the Place intended until someone or something opens them. One could argue that they are that way now, so redirecting is doing no harm, but it also means that the old text is still what is displayed. Sometimes this is no big deal, but sometimes it leaves the reader with incomplete or misleading information.

My thinking on this now is that the best way to fix a bad link is still to edit it directly. That is still the cleanest way. This can be done in batches, as long as you are sure that each change you are making is appropriate. It is more informative and helpful to our readers to replace something like "Saugatuck, MI" with "Saugatuck, Allegan, Michigan, United States", instead of leaving "Saugatuck, MI" there with a hidden redirect.

The next best method is to use the redirect, as long as you are sure that

  1. it applies to each page in the "What links here" list (extremely important),
  2. the text you are leaving on each page is meaningful, and
  3. you understand that those linked pages will still remain hidden from the "Surname in Place" feature until the next time they are individually opened which could be years from now or never.

I would very much like to hear some feedback on this, especially if I am missing something. If you think we should implement a policy one way or the other on the use of redirect with Place names, please weigh in. There has been a lot of redirecting going on lately as there has been a burst of energy directed at the Wanted pages list. I think the enthusiasm is great and the attention is much appreciated. Let's make sure that we are all on the same page and are very clear about what we think is best when it comes to handling these old bad place links within the context of our current program. Thanks, --cos1776 14:53, 28 June 2017 (UTC)

I've been using redirect lately in the Midwest. If the list of "What Links.." is short, I've tried changing the place before I redirect. I haven't encountered a long list yet. The stickiest situation I've encountered is when a dependent cemetery and the township where it was located were BOTH incorrect, with about a dozen burials in the cemetery. That required some time.--SkippyG 15:48, 28 June 2017 (UTC)

Your note encouraged me to do a bit more redirecting this evening. You will now see lines through places in Quebec, Nova Scotia, and one in England. There are a lot of places which, in their correct form, are in our database; it is only necessary to add a comma and/or the country to include these people in the place where they ought to be. I usually check the county list before making the redirect.

The red-linked places in Québec have usually been described as in "Quebec" by anglophones who didn't see the need for an acute accent (or didn't know where to find it on their keyboards). I have now added Quebec, Canada as an alternate name for Québec, Canada. Just to make more confusion for us with limited knowledge of French, Québec is a city and a county as well as a province. I have been chasing around looking for acute-accented "e's" to copy and paste for 2-3 hours. We also decided to use Saint and Sainte rather that the usual "St".

Then there is the more serious problem of Acadia which has been declared a county of Quebec in WeRelate. Acadia was located geographically in Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick. Some users have contributed a great many Acadians to our database. We must give some thought to where these people really ought to be. If you don't know the history of Acadia, read the Wikipedia article.--Goldenoldie 21:55, 28 June 2017 (UTC)

Samuel Waggoner (9) [1 July 2017]

Hi fellow Place Patrollers,

I tried correcting places on the page for Samuel Waggoner. I keep getting a message that the corrections can not be processed, possibly because the page is jammed with sources, etc. Could someone take a look and advise ? This is beyond my skill set. Neal--SkippyG 16:07, 29 June 2017 (UTC)

Samuel Waggoner

Thanks for the response, Goldenoldie. I tried copying a chunk of Property references, then trying to delete those on his page, hoping it would free-up the edit process. Nope, not allowed. I'm considering creating another Samuel Waggoner page, then reconfiguring all the sources, notes (most link to place pages, seemingly for an unknown purpose, and My Source references for publications already in the WR catalogue) and dates with links simply marked "Other" w/o explanation.....then deleting everything and redirecting. If someone has another "method", please speak up, otherwise I'll talk to everyone in late July or early August...maybe {;>)--SkippyG 00:51, 30 June 2017 (UTC)

I can see the problem. The information provider certainly wanted to tell us a lot. Would it be possible to rework all the property deals into a list that could be put into "Personal Details"? Then maybe add another paragraph of offices held? Etc? I would do this outside WR and then do a bulk delete when you are ready to replace all the current sources with the Personal Details material. It's a lot of work, but it might improve the use of computer memory. There are bound to be other suggestions.

Good luck, --Goldenoldie 18:22, 29 June 2017 (UTC)

I did give it a quick go earlier today and found the same issues as you did. I tried just changing one place - no luck. Tried just opening and closing the page - same thing. So there is definitely something fishy going on with that page. I can't spend too much time on it right now, but I agree with your approach. It isn't going to hurt anything if you create a new page for him and then merge the two (if it will let you - I'm not sure about that). If it doesn't work, then you are no worse off than when you started, except for the lost time. Either way, please report back, so we know how it turned out and if something else needs to be done. Good Luck, --cos1776 01:05, 30 June 2017 (UTC)

I'm going to create the new page for Samuel Waggoner and place the basics (bmd) in for tonight, and tackle the rest tomorrow. If I can pull the rest of the info, delete that info from the original and merge, great. If not, I don't believe I can even do a Speedy Delete. Cross that bridge when I come to it.....--SkippyG 01:48, 30 June 2017 (UTC)

Could an admin try deleting Samuel Waggoner (9) ? I've created a new page Samuel Waggoner (10), and saved some details to be added after a little more digging. #redirect and Speedy Delete did not work. Thanks Neal--SkippyG 06:17, 1 July 2017 (UTC)

Glad to see you've handled it this far. regards, --Goldenoldie 06:28, 1 July 2017 (UTC)

Follow up: I thought about this a bit and elected to merge instead of delete in order to keep the history. It went through with no issues. Good work Neal! --cos1776 16:16, 1 July 2017 (UTC)

Thanks, everyone, for all help/suggestions, especially the unspoken reassurance that cleaning up this page was not impossible. As I said, I have more to add from the list I created, once I find backup for some of the statements made on the original page. I believe I can access the Deeds on my next trip to my local library, and retrieve quotes from the histories mentioned. Also, I have a few Census records to look at and cite for a better "take" of Samuel, wife & children, many of whom have Est December birthdates; odd. Happy Saturday...Neal--SkippyG 16:53, 1 July 2017 (UTC)

Something fishy in Denmark [22 August 2017]

Hi Patrol!
fyi - Denmark is going to need some focused attention to get it back on course ... It would appear that in 2012-2013, some well-intentioned (I'm sure) users took it upon themselves to remake the place hierarchy for many Danish places:

From: (the agreed upon 3-part) town/village/parish/hundred, county, Denmark - Ex. Place:Bested, Thisted, Denmark
To: town/village/parish + descriptor, hundred, county, Denmark - Ex. Place:Bedsted Sogn, Hassing herred, Thisted, Denmark

These 2 pages are duplicates for the same location, and you can see this same pattern repeated for several Danish counties. It looks like this was done with a combination of renaming and duplicating existing place pages. I'm not sure how extensive the problem is.

I can understand (sort of) why this happened, since the instructions posted for titling places in Denmark are not adequately explained and the existing hierarchy was not finished (i.e. the parishes should all have been "Also located in" their appropriate hundred). It is very unfortunate that the users did not run this by the patrol or the watercooler first before proceeding, as that would have saved us all a lot of time. Undoing and cleaning this up and adequately documenting the preferred titling method to prevent this from happening again is going to be a big task, but it will make a big difference in ensuring that the Person pages are being linked to the correct locations. Would any members of the patrol (or others) be interested in taking on this cleanup project for Denmark? Regards, --cos1776 14:45, 22 August 2017 (UTC)