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Conflicting dates, how to handle?


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#1 strathglass

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Posted 15 August 2020 - 08:28 PM

Example: two different sources indicate a birth date a couple days apart.

Another example: one birth date says Dec. 19, 1864 (no location), another indicates just 1865 (with a location).

 

In one case I put in the date field of the fact something like "25 Mar 1858 or 26 Mar 1858"

In another case I used two different facts.

I prefer the former approach...is there a best practice here? 

Is it OK to list two dates or even a date and a date range within one date field?



#2 KFN

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Posted 16 August 2020 - 08:33 AM

The best practice based on the GEDCOM Standard is to create two facts one for each date, with sources for each fact.  I’m not sure in RM7 how to indicate which one is preferred, but in GEDCOM the first one listed would be the one preferred.

 

HOWEVER, you could also use a date range, in one fact.  “BET date1 AND date2”

 

Both are correct.  The second one requires notes to indicate the one you think is best and which source each date came from.

 

I like using two facts because it better asserts that you found conflicting information vs. not having an exact date which is kind of what the BET implies.



#3 Jerry Bryan

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Posted 16 August 2020 - 04:33 PM

The best practice based on the GEDCOM Standard is to create two facts one for each date, with sources for each fact.  I’m not sure in RM7 how to indicate which one is preferred, but in GEDCOM the first one listed would be the one preferred.

 

In my best recollection, I didn't think it was possible control the order in which a person's facts appear in RM's GEDCOM. I thought they appeared in GEDCOM in the order you entered them and then the software receiving the GEDCOM would be expected to put the facts back into timeline order based on their dates. However, I just added a dummy person to a test database with a birth date in 1850 and then added a second Birth fact with a birth date in 1848. I made a GEDCOM containing only that one person. I expected the 1850 birth date to appear first in the GEDCOM since I had entered it first. But the duplicate BIRT tags were in timeline order in the GEDCOM, 1848 before 1850. That's fine if you wanted the 1848 BIRT tag to be preferred but not so fine if you wanted the 1850 BIRT tag to be preferred. In any case, my best recollection about the ordering of facts in RM's GEDCOM is obviously not correct.

 

Jerry



#4 strathglass

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Posted 16 August 2020 - 05:48 PM

Thanks for the good input folks, that helps. Just need to decide in which cases the use of 2 facts is worth the extra effort.
Jerry - At least for GEDCOM if I cared I could manually edit the .GED output as required to put preferred date first, although that would be tedious if there were lots of entries to fix!



#5 KFN

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Posted 16 August 2020 - 06:20 PM

Jerry,

 

Thank you for your test, I appreciate the feedback.  I tried entering two births myself in RM7 and you are right, the GEDCOM output is incorrect, using a non-standard tag to indicate “primary”, which other programs may not understand.

 

Based on Jerry’s test, if you intend to ever transfer your database to another program via GEDCOM using one BIRTh record with a “between” dates and notes would be the recommend entry!

 

HOWEVER, if you intend to always use RM then you can enter both Dates as separate birth records, mark the one you think is the most accurate “primary” and the system will use that in the display.



#6 jagwinn

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Posted 14 September 2020 - 06:42 AM

Born and Died same day:

Born 7SEP1852-1

Died 7SEP1852

 

Birth will appear before Death. Otherwise RM7 sometimes places Death before Birth...



#7 Jim Byram

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Posted 14 September 2020 - 07:47 AM

Born and Died same day:

Born 7SEP1852-1

Died 7SEP1852

 

Birth will appear before Death. Otherwise RM7 sometimes places Death before Birth...

 

Use sort dates to control the fact order, not some date manipulation.



#8 Jerry Bryan

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Posted 14 September 2020 - 07:48 AM

Born and Died same day:

Born 7SEP1852-1

Died 7SEP1852

 

Slightly better is the following.

 

Born 7 Sep 1852, sort date 7 Sep 1852-1

Died 7 Sep 1852, sort date 7 Sep 1852-2

 

The dashes in real dates will appear in reports, and you don't want the dashes in reports. The dashes in the sort dates do not appear in reports because sort dates themselves do not appear in reports.

 

Jerry