Friday, January 30, 2015

A neglected source citation

There is one fact that a lot of researchers neglect to attach a source citation to and that is the parent-child relationship. Proving that a person is the child of certain parents is crucial.  If you ever apply to a lineage society you will find out just how crucial it is.  This is an easy fact to overlook when you are concentrating on entering sources for someone’s date/place of birth, date/place of marriage, and date/place of death.

In Legacy you can source this in two different ways.  The first is on the Assigned Sources screen.  You can access this from the Family View or the Individual’s Information screen by clicking on the icon that looks like books.  You can just paste the source in the correct field like I showed you HERE.  You can see that I have four sources that I am using to show that Keziah Grantham is the daughter of Ebenezer Grantham.  I have Keziah’s death certificate and the 1860, 1870 and 1880 censuses.  I don’t have any sources for Keziah’s mother.  I know who Keziah’s mother should be from the 1850 census (she is dead by 1860).  On that census is a 2 month old unnamed baby that may or may not be Keziah (Keziah was born in 1855 so it is a bit of a stretch).  I am still working on this one.  You can click any of the screenshots to enlarge them.



You can also do this from the Family View by right-clicking in the Children’s List at the bottom and then selecting Children’s Settings.  We need to talk about this screen for a bit.  Notice on this screen you can actually name the relationship using the drop down list (i.e. biological, adopted, etc.)  The default for biological is to leave this field BLANK.  The only time you will ever want to designate someone specifically as biological is if you have a true adoption situation where you have to differentiate between the two sets of parents.  I know that was a bit of a tangent but I just had to get that in there.  To add a source here you just click in the field and then click the PASTE button on the left (it looks like a minus sign). 

ss 2


Also notice that the Relationship to Father is red and the Relationship to Mother is black.  Red means I have a source attached to this field.  You will see these colors on the Individual’s Information screen as well.  Monday I will show you how to set the colors so that those fields with sources will light up.



I am adding two more screenshots because I forgot that there is another way to add a source to the relationship.  Fellow blogger Diane Gould Hall of Michigan Family Trails pointed it out in the comments.

You can either right click on the husband or wife and then select View > Parents List or you can click the Parents icon under the person, second icon from the left.

5 ss


When you do, you get this

6 ss


Copyright © 2015 Michele Simmons Lewis


  1. I agree with you Michele, that this source connection is overlooked. I assign a source to the child's relationship to parents by right clicking on the person in Family View, which then brings up several options to view family members. In this case I choose parents. I began doing this several years ago. However, I need to go back to the beginning, my parents, and make sure I've assigned those sources. It's likely I have not, as I began doing it later in my research. Thank you for this post.

    1. Excellent! I had totally forgotten about that shortcut. As a matter of fact, you can get to this same screen from the Family View by clicking the Parents icon (2nd icon from the left under the person). Another thing I really like about Legacy, there is usually more than one way to do something so you can find a way that is easiest for you.

    2. Great Michele. Thanks for the mention. Our genealogy blog community is the best!

  2. Not all genealogy software has a dedicated place for relationship citations. As a work-around, I have always used "Name" sources to document "identity' in a wider sense, including parentage.

    1. As long as the information is somewhere :) Anyone working on a lineage society application or the Kinship Determination Project for the Board for Certification of Genealogists (BCG) will have to prove every parent-child link in their line. Even if you aren't interested in either of these you still need to do this or your research isn't up to par.

      Also, many times you won't have direct evidence of the relationship and you will have to put together an indirect evidence proof argument. These are some of the most fun reports to put together :)

  3. Agree absolutely! My family tree is constructed using two links. One is the marriage link. The other is the parent child relationship. These links are the framework for everything else.