FamilySearch Wiki:Contributors Meeting 29 August 2013
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Kudos go to
Moderators and Adopters
Conversation in the call:
- Handling outdated syllabi contained within the wiki:
- update articles? Contact contributor? Contact original presenter if not the wiki contributor?
- archive them when obsolete?
- delete and replace, if similar topic is needed?
For discussion purposes, see Powerful Tips and Tricks for Searching Historical Documents in FamilySearch.
Gerry McGovern explains why it is so important to have processes in place to review and remove outdated content in "Why review and remove are such critical web skills." It's worth a quick read.
Lise 18:43, 29 August 2013 (UTC)
Thought: Contributors need to have the power to remove/archive articles. We will discuss next week more completely.
Updates and follow up
County QuickStart - moving statewide resources to the right. Compare to Grays Harbor County Washington: https://familysearch.org/learn/wiki/en/Grays_Harbor_County,_Washington article Do you prefer the colored box? Some think it makes the page look busy, but people notice it. Try a white box. Boxes need to be aligned with other boxes and take the notch out - Wilma fixed. We need to do more so it does not seem like there is two columns. Renders differently in different browsers.
- gone to topics on the Washington States instead of resources
- gone to archives and libraries instead of repositories
- neighboring counties being added
- does "What do cemetery records tell you?" chart help people? Seldom and usually is helpful. Idea: Maybe use check marks instead of stars so the results do not appear to be based on stats. This article shows the use of "Expand" and "empty section" templates: https://familysearch.org/learn/wiki/en/User:Lembley/sandboxHRC
Getting Past the Boundary Changes (from August 8th Meeting)
Steps contributors can take to help users in their localities find resources for extinct and redistricted areas (We will then move to Colonial Era and Antebellum resources).
We need to assist in identifying records from 1900 back to pre-colonial times. For African Americans, we need to identify records between 1865-1870 (For example in SC: 1869 State Census, agricultural census, 1868 Voter's Registration, tax records) which can help link them back to resources generated prior to 1865. Researching dissertations at the Charleston County Libary revealed the fact that several post colonial era records (including church records - baptisms) exist for South Carolina that even identify persons of color.
The challenge that we must overcome:
- many records having genealogical value remain untouched in courthouses and exist nowhere else
- Record types are named differently in different localities
- after researchers tap out using onine resources they need to be able to understand the research changes going back in time. Many useful records going back in time are not readily discussed and are not accessible online.
- We must research respository holdings or query those who have this knowledge
Resources that help users identify historical records generated for example, in US colonial period and before county formations are greatly needed (also any extinct counties, districts, townships). What steps can contributors take to make sure users can find resources in these areas?
1. Look at the localities that you have knowledge about. What are some areas this group has knowledge about or interest in?
Review the area on the Wiki for resources available. Review to make sure it is easy for users to tell where to look for resources during time periods when resources were generated for this area. Add resources that you have knowledge about.
2. Pick an area. Learn about boundary changes. Use the following resources to learn about boundaries:
- See Newberry Library Atlas of Historical Boundaries
- See also Colonial Times
- Red Book
- State boundaries, The Census Book
- The Township Atlas
- Resources at the local archives
3. Learn where records are held during different time periods for a particular state/province/county/parish, etc. What are some examples of respositories? Do not forget to check church records. They may be the only way to determine BMD before civil records existed.
4. Identify record types and what these records contain. Look for resources through
- genealogical societies - query experts, attend presentations, and review publications
- local library - find out who the local history manager is and what they know, resources they have.
- university libraries - check online and offline catalogs, and query manager of local history
- historical societies -
- museums - check resources, online catalogs, vertical files
Where can you go to learn about records that exist? Add information to the Wiki. Help users understand how to use these records.
5. Check online sites such as Internet Archives and Google Books for publications that can help users learn more about local histories. Some may also mention early settlers or allied family.
7. Attend a local genealogical workshop conference to meet other experts and learn of resources.
Community Council Report
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