Friday, November 30, 2012

Today is My Birthday! (How to do Cool Searches Using Your Genealogy Program)

I thought it would be fun to see how many people in my file share my birthday. I am only listing those that are deceased. There are three more that are living.

Paul Wade Harden, 30 Nov 1896 - 28 Jul 1964
Lenard L. Lee, 30 Nov 1888 - 25 Sep 1925
John Wesley Morris, 30 Nov 1916 - 06 Aug 1983
John Judson Perry, 30 Nov 1858 - 24 Jun 1927. This is my 2nd great-grandfather.
Benjamin Rawls, 30 Nov 1800 - 09 Jun 1882
Serena Seal, 30 Nov 1881 - 02 Jan 1976

One of the nifty things about genealogy database programs is their search feature. I use Legacy and its search capabilities are very powerful. For example, I can do searches for any male that was living and the right age to have served in the Civil War. This makes it easy when I am using a Civil War index for compiled service records or pensions. I can find everyone that died in a specific county which is helpful if I am looking at a cemetery book. These are examples of very simple searches but I can also do very complex ones. It is actually quite fun. How about something like this:

Everyone that has the surname Simmons
And was born in Mississippi
Or was born in Texas
And was born before 1850
And was married in Lamar County
Or was married in Forrest County
And whose spouse was named Mary

I could keep adding to the search criteria with as many and/or that I want. I can also do generic built in searches looking for any missing information or missing sources. Legacy also has a nifty built in search that will tell you everyone that should have been alive during any census year and where they should be. It will give you a probability rating. For example, I can tell it to make a list of everyone that should be in Marion County, Mississippi for the 1870 census. The program is so smart it will exclude everyone that you have already recorded an 1870 census event for. You can tell it to use an average lifespan of 80 years (or whatever) and then it will pick up people that you don't have dates for based on the dates of the parents or children.

I am just happy that I am not doing a search for everyone who died on the same day as I did.

Copyright © 2012 Michele Simmons Lewis