I’m a little late in starting but I’ve decided I’m going to partake in Amy Johnson Crow’s family history writing exercise “52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks”. Seeing as writing about my ancestors always seems so daunting, I hope that doing it weekly on a different member of my family that maybe, just maybe, I’ll feel more comfortable.
Week 1’s topic is “A Fresh Start”. I’m going to be super generic and talk about myself – I’m going through a fresh start in my genealogical journey as I am going through all my people and making sure they belong and that I have the documents I need for them, and that I have the full information for each ancestor.
For example on New Year’s Eve, I discovered in my Legacy software all the people who I have just a year down for their birth date or death date – all their reminders came up on December 31. And it wasn’t just a few I had, it was for 134 dates!
In some ways I stand by the dates, something is better than nothing, so when I see a child who shows up on a Census or two and all I have is that random year of birth that’s given, I use it with a hope of someday finding additional information such as a month or an actual day to go with it.
I also ran a potential problem report and was fortunate it was only a page in length. I’ve fixed most of these mistakes as one person had a death date before their birth date (I typed 1930 for their birth instead of 1830 – an easily fixed typographical error, but an error nonetheless).
Going more in-depth and trying to find out what I don’t know is going to make me a better family historian. We all deserve a fresh start every now and then – and mine has begun, even with this challenge, as it will allow me to get to know my ancestors even better.
If you are interested in doing your own writing journey, 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks is where you can sign up and see the listing of all the prompts for this year’s challenge.
7 thoughts on “Week 1: A Fresh Start”
Do you like Legacy?
I do like Legacy, Luanne. I got it almost 2 years ago as a birthday present. My mom had asked me what I wanted for my birthday, and since I was primarily still using FamilySearch at the time for a majority of my research, I remember getting so upset when someone put a person in the middle of “my” tree who didn’t belong. I decided if I had my own program that I could control who was and wasn’t on my tree, and while I quickly Googled family tree programs or something similar, at that point in time Legacy was getting the best reviews. If you were curious about the program, you can download a free version to check it out. There are a bunch of reports that you can run on the Deluxe edition and there are free webinars about how to use it at http://www.familytreewebinars.com. I know there are other similar programs that sync more with Ancestry if you think that would be a better fit for you. You can get hints from both FamilySearch and MyHeritage with Legacy Family Tree if you opt to turn them on. I’ve already downloaded so many files I keep mine off as I don’t want to duplicate my efforts, but I do occasionally turn them on for a day or so to see if there is something new I may have missed. There is also a Facebook group for Legacy users if you are unable to figure out a problem – there are many people proficient in the program who normally get you an answer within an hour or two. I hope this helped!
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Interesting! I did buy Legacy a couple of years ago AND NEVER STARTED USING IT. I’m so overwhelmed by it all. I have everything on Ancestry and need to have a backup plan, but am helpless to figure it out because I just don’t have the time to duplicate it all over again. (wah wah wah)
Have you ever considered downloading the GED file from Ancestry and uploading it into Legacy? I completely entered all my people into Legacy one by one – but this way I was able to make sure there was no one I had not proved in my tree – and I didn’t want people on there that I hadn’t verified (at the time I probably only had 200 people on my tree).
My husband has primarily just used Ancestry for his research and when he uploaded his information from Ancestry into Legacy, the different sources and such he had on Ancestry did cross over. He probably needs to add years and such to the Events (as I am looking at the entry on his grandmother so I’m not giving you bad information), he has an Event that says Resident and it is more than likely for a City Directory, it doesn’t have a year or description showing on the event, but it does have a location and a citation has been made for it (and I know he didn’t do it). He hasn’t really used Legacy much either, but I understand your not using Legacy as you have similar control on Ancestry as you would in your own program. But it’s neat to run a report to find out how many people are buried in a specific cemetery if you are planning a trip to said cemetery, this way you could check off all your relatives that you want to visit when you’re there. I know I am just using the bare minimum of the things the program can do, but I’m also trying to do better at running reports and such as part of my “fresh start” for the new year. They give little tips about how to use your program in the Facebook group, for instance, the Potential Problem report was one such that they discussed on December 31. It pointed out problems I may not have noticed at a glance looking at someone’s profile (like my typo of 1930 instead of 1830).
If you decide to use it I would highly recommend that Facebook User group. It’s called “Legacy User Group”, like most genealogy groups I believe you have to answer a few questions but it’s a fairly quick acceptance. You can search through questions that have already been asked by using a keyword, I do this often so I’m not asking something that’s been asked a few dozen times before.
You can also go here https://familytreewebinars.com/category/243/legacyfamilytree for webinars. If there is a blue “free” in the corner you can watch those without a subscription and will instruct you on how to do a variety of things with the program, especially the basics.
I’m sure I’ve inundated you with information but I hope it was helpful (I know I can ramble on to no end at times). Good luck – and I’d be happy to help if you have any more questions.
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Wow this is fabulous information. I really appreciate it. I need to take a week and try to figure this out and see if it will work for me since I haven’t even given it a chance. I will be coming back to your comments here to utilize your advice.
Luanne, I’m just happy to help. Let me know if you need anything.
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