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#1 Fosgran

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Posted 30 October 2013 - 07:53 AM

Hello Everyone

I am a very new user to RM6, having decided to move my data from Genbox which has had no development for several years, and am still trying to understand the new ways of doing things, so apologies if I keep asking obvious questions.

Places seem to have got messed up in the Gedcom import so that seemed a good place to start with data tidying. In preparation I have watched the Webinar on places but still have some questions which may be specific to UK place names.

Firstly, I am splitting all the address details out - this seems to be time consuming but straightforward.

However, what I am unsure about is the rest of a place. For instance many of our towns/cities have subdivisions i.e. Stretford or Cheetham Hill in Manchester. Should these be part of the place or place detail? Will choosing one or the other have implications that I don't as yet understand? I know if you enter a new event and add an address it does a county check, is there a way of doing this directly from the place list or do I have to go into each individual event to check if the place details are correct for that time period?

Any advice would be appreciated before I spend too long making alterations that I might regret in the future.

Thanks

Linda

#2 Jerry Bryan

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Posted 30 October 2013 - 10:38 AM

I know if you enter a new event and add an address it does a county check, is there a way of doing this directly from the place list or do I have to go into each individual event to check if the place details are correct for that time period?


You will have to go into each individual event. The reason is the County Check confirms the county and date together.

In Jerry's perfect world, County Check should work both with and without a date. For example, suppose I were to enter Cherokee County, Tennessee without a date (ignoring the fact that the word "County" will upset County Check no end even though it shouldn't - it should check for a Cherokee County in Tennessee whether the word "County" is present or not, thereby satisfying all users :) ). There are numerous American states that have a Cherokee County, but Tennessee is not one of them despite the fact that the Cherokee heavily populated what is now Tennessee. So it would make perfectly good sense for County Check to flag Cherokee County, Tennessee as an error even in the absence of a date. But it doesn't work that way.

You might be better served by trying the Gazetteer feature because the Gazetteer does not work with dates. The Gazetteer does not flag errors per se, but in my example of Cherokee County you could simply enter Cherokee and observe that there is no "Cherokee, Tennessee, United States" in the list of items that comes up. Of course, that leaves us with County Check and Place List and Gazetteer, all of which have to do with places, and none of which are really integrated with each other in the user interface (as Vyger is fond of pointing out).

Another thing to keep in mind that if by hook or by crook you get a place into any particular event so that the place is "just right", then when you subsequently start typing the same place into any other events the "just right" form of the place will appear in a drop down box (having been taken from the Place List). So if you get places "just right" from the get go, they will effectively be replicated correctly. Or in the other direction, you can correct a place in the Place List and the correction will automatically be applied to every event where the place had been replicated.

I don't really feel qualified to speak to your detailed questions about UK place names and place details. I apologize for having to answer with examples of American place names, but that's about the best I could do.

Jerry

P.S. My example of the place name Cherokee is a great example of why I'm so adamant that the word County appear in place names and why I think the Place Name Standard is so irrational. There is a Cherokee County in Georgia. There is also a town called Cherokee in Bibb County, Georgia. So if I say Cherokee, Georgia is it Cherokee County or is it the town of Cherokee in Bibb County? The place name standard is just really,really, really irrational.

#3 Dale DePriest

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Posted 30 October 2013 - 10:48 AM

Although I think this thread does not belong it tips I would agree with the name county or co. as being an important addition to RootsMagic. I too have problems where the county and city names can be confused and adding leading commas is silly.

Dale

#4 Vyger

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Posted 31 October 2013 - 03:59 AM

Of course, that leaves us with County Check and Place List and Gazetteer, all of which have to do with places, and none of which are really integrated with each other in the user interface (as Vyger is fond of pointing out).


:D When I go to the Mens department I find all the mens clothes there....

In answer to the original question there really is no definitive answer regarding what is Place and what is Place details and there is a general hope that RM increases productivity here with regards to splitting and combining.

In general if a Place is recognized by Gazetteer it is a Place so Trafford, Manchester, England is not a Place, or is it? When placed into Bing Maps the result is the Trafford Center with geocoding so not what you would wish. When placed into Google Maps the result is the land division of Trafford, Manchester, England and you could manually take geocoding from the center of that boundary.

Personally I have Trafford as a Place Detail, if I had a street address that would also be in Place Details. The problem I realized and needs to be dealt with is that Gazetteer and mapping utilities deal more with modern known Places especially as regards geocoding and as our research progresses we deal more with old land definitions like Trafford rather than Manchester of which it is now a part.

In Ireland I have decided for my own research to note Parishes as Places as in Ireland the division of Townland exists within the Parish and is commonly the residence information found on old registrations, even within our modern society those Townlands are still in use with Land Registry and have not changed. Therefore for me they are a reliable definition of area which you could not expect any automated system to recognize.

As I said there is no definite and all encompassing answer to this so my main advice is to give your direction careful consideration. Effectively you will begin to build your own data collection with geocoding, notes and media as there is no one system that can provide such information.

You could have a read at my own opinions through the link in my signature and also at http://www.vyger.co.uk/mapping.html

Hope this helps

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#5 Jerry Bryan

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Posted 31 October 2013 - 07:12 AM

When placed into Bing Maps the result is the Trafford Center with geocoding so not what you would wish. When placed into Google Maps the result is the land division of Trafford, Manchester, England and you could manually take geocoding from the center of that boundary.

Genealogical data is supposed to be connected to the places names as they existed at the time of the event. I've thought a little bit about the problem of geocoding and dates, but probably not as much and as deeply as Vyger has. In the early U.S., county lines changed frequently and radically as the country was being settled and as new states and new counties were being created. My favorite example is that I have a lot of early data from Greenbrier County, Virginia. The problem is that Greenbrier County was split to form GreenBrier County and Monroe County, and during the Civil War Virginia was split to form Virginina and West Virginia. Properly geocoded, my data from Greenbrier County, Virginia now lies in Monroe County, West Virginia.

Jerry

#6 Dale DePriest

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Posted 31 October 2013 - 10:13 AM

:D When I go to the Mens department I find all the mens clothes there....

In answer to the original question there really is no definitive answer regarding what is Place and what is Place details and there is a general hope that RM increases productivity here with regards to splitting and combining.


Actually a place is defined down to the level of a city or town in GEDCOM standard. Below that level a place detail or place description is needed. I do wish that place detail was easier to enter at the individual person edit screen particularly for gps coordinates.

Dale

#7 Vyger

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Posted 31 October 2013 - 10:24 AM

In the early U.S., county lines changes frequently and radically as the country was being settled and as new states and new counties were being created.


This would undoubtedly vary a little from country to country, the case in Ireland is unique to Ireland, from my knowledge in England the Parish is the smallest land division with villages noted within that division. Another land division which was used in various countries was the Hundred although this term has fallen into misuse.

Recently I was involved in a property transfer and I was very please when my solicitor read out the property address as being in the Townland of Ballygolan in the Parish of Carnmoney so legally those land divisions are still used from a property perspective.

Jerry, quick question as US land division would not be a subject I would be well up on, where does the Township fit in with the moving county County and State lines?, did the border of a Township remain unchanged or did new Townships evolve through splitting over time?

Further reading - https://www.google.c...vision hundreds

Useful Irish Place Name reference - http://www.irish-place-names.com/

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#8 Jerry Bryan

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Posted 31 October 2013 - 12:41 PM

Jerry, quick question as US land division would not be a subject I would be well up on, where does the Township fit in with the moving county County and State lines?, did the border of a Township remain unchanged or did new Townships evolve through splitting over time?

I'm chagrined to say that I don't really know. The areas of the country that I research most heavily did not and still do not use the Township system and I've never found a good description of how Townships work.

I've never recorded a Township as either a Place or as a Place Details in my RM database. The issue where it might be expected to come up might be for U.S. Census records because I have census records from nearly every state, including states that do use the Township system. But for census records, all I record in the Place and Place Details is the county and state. I put all the other "place stuff" from the census pages into the census note as a part of a transcription of the census entry in question. In addition to county and state, the "place stuff" from the census pages can contain, city, town, precinct, ward, township, district (all kinds of districts such as civil districts, military districts, justice districts, magisterial districts, etc.), and post office names.

Post office names are often highly misleading and often do not represent real places accurately. For one example, Dandridge is a small town (an actual incorporated municipality) in Jefferson County, Tennessee. But many people who live well outside the official corporate boundaries of Dandridge have Dandridge postal addresses with rural route numbers and it is therefore Dandridge that shows up in many census records as far back as 1860. So for census records, I just say Jefferson County, Tennessee. For things like birth and death, I usually just say Jefferson County, Tennessee and only say Dandridge, Jefferson County, Tennessee when I have good evidence that the event actually took place with in the actual incorporated municipality. I pay no attention to the mailing address.

For an example of the reverse situation, Scarbrough is a small community in Anderson County, Tennessee that is not now nor has ever been an actual incorporated municipality. In addition, there used to be a Scarbrough post office in the Scarbrough community (there isn't any more). For census records, I simply say Anderson County, Tennessee. For things like birth and death, I usually just say Anderson County, Tennessee and only say Scarbrough, Anderson County, Tennessee when I have good evidence that the event actually took place within the "informal boundaries" of the Scarbrough Community (information that is often hard to come by). Again, I pay no attention to the mailing address.

If either Dandridge or Scarbrough appears in my database, it appears in the Place field. I reserve Place Details for things like the name of a hospital where somebody was born or died or the name of a cemetery where somebody is buried.

Jerry

#9 Vyger

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Posted 31 October 2013 - 03:01 PM

If either Dandridge or Scarbrough appears in my database, it appears in the Place field. I reserve Place Details for things like the name of a hospital where somebody was born or died or the name of a cemetery where somebody is buried.


Thanks Jerry, sounds like no real reliable land division system exists across the US and having visited many times I can understand how difficult that might be with the expanse of the country and lack of frequent topographical natural features.

The other problem which, as always, drives decisions like this is the way Rootsmagic works with the delimited values, thank goodness for SQL.

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#10 John_of_Ross_County

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Posted 31 October 2013 - 07:17 PM

There is another complication with large cities. Most of Columbus is in Franklin County, Ohio. However, small portions of the incorporated area spill over into Fairfield County and Delaware County.

Therefore, your Post Office address may not necessarily be where you live.

At least in Ohio, the website for the county Board of Elections is probably the best tie between your Post Office address and where you live. It gives the
1] Local school district
2] The township/city
3] The post Office address
4] Voting precinct

At least for Ross County, Ohio, an address within the city limits of Chillicothe can't be distinguished from an address in some small unincorporated villages or a totally rural address unless you know the road or street names.

#11 John_of_Ross_County

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Posted 31 October 2013 - 08:11 PM

This would undoubtedly vary a little from country to country, the case in Ireland is unique to Ireland, from my knowledge in England the Parish is the smallest land division with villages noted within that division. Another land division which was used in various countries was the Hundred although this term has fallen into misuse.


Jerry, quick question as US land division would not be a subject I would be well up on, where does the Township fit in with the moving county County and State lines?, did the border of a Township remain unchanged or did new Townships evolve through splitting over time?

In Ohio, counties are divided into townships. Township boundaries have changed over the years. Some townships have moved intact from one county to another. In large cities, some townships have been abolished and no longer exist. Ross County has 16 townships.

A township has three elected trustees and a fiscal officer formerly known as a clerk. Some townships have incorporated villages or unincorporated villages. Some rural townships have zoning. Many do not. The trustees hire employees to maintain roads and operate local fire and emergency squad crews. Some of these crews are volunteer and some are paid.
For what it is worth, I record as follows:

Frankfort, Concord Township, Ross County, Ohio for those actually living in the village

Concord Township, Ross County, Ohio for those on farms in the township but outside the village

Frankfort, Concord Township, Ross County, Ohio with Frankfort High School as a place detail

with Greenlawn Cemetery as another place detail

And I actually abbreviate Township to "T." and County to "C." and Ohio to OH. Therefore, RootsMagic boundary checking does not work for me.

#12 Jerry Bryan

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Posted 31 October 2013 - 09:48 PM

There is another complication with large cities. Most of Columbus is in Franklin County, Ohio. However, small portions of the incorporated area spill over into Fairfield County and Delaware County.

The exact same thing can happen even with very small towns. They also can straddle county boundaries.

Jerry

#13 Jerry Bryan

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Posted 31 October 2013 - 09:48 PM

The exact same thing can happen even with very small towns. They also can straddle county boundaries and be in two or three counties.

Jerry



#14 Vyger

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Posted 01 November 2013 - 03:24 PM

It would seem difficult that US locations have not, at least, kept some common foundation through time that can be referenced although this would make the case for better proximity reporting within RM to actual co-ordinates rather than a Place.

I now realize how lucky I am with the land division system in Ireland which contains over 60 thousand townlands. These Irish Townlands predate the Norman invasion of the 12th century and are of Gaelic origin. Whilst Parish boundaries may have changed and Protestant and Roman Catholic Parish boundaries differ the Townland boundaries have remained mostly unchanged. Individuals and Families were noted as being "of" a Townland and maybe a Parish and as I said previously Townlands are still referred to today in land registry affairs.

Similar pre-medieval land divisions to the Townland system of Ireland also existed in England, Scotland and the Isle of Man but unfortunately these have failed to survive even into the 20th century.

On reflection each Country deserves its own system of Place and Place Detail notation after careful consideration of that Countries land registry system. Any defined Place or Place Detail can be described in Notes, shown through Media and geocoded but it is the geocoding which is important as regards proximity of family events regardless of changing boundaries.

As the Police Officer asks "where were you on the night of.....", it is that proximity within that time scale which makes you a likely or unlikely subject. I do hope Rootsmagic improves on the reporting of events within a prescribed proximity of user input co-ordinates and possible a user decided date range. That is where the real clues to possible family associations really lie. IMO

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#15 Fosgran

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Posted 02 November 2013 - 08:52 AM

Thanks for the responses to my questions and apologies for posting in the Hints and Tips, which I was reading before making the post. Places seem to be a bit of a minefield, but I think the general consensus is that places like Stretford and Prestwich, which were once towns in their own right, should now be part of the place detail. I think geocoding/adding co-ordinates and putting notes about the historic changes is going to be the best way of dealing with the issue. It would be good if all the historic place names could be added, with their timescales, as variations of the current place so that the appropriate one could be chosen for the period of each event but maybe that is expecting too much. Next job - tidying my sources.