OneGreatFamily Subscriber Newsletter
May 5, 2005

Preserve Your Family History at OneGreatFamily

In This Issue:

Involve Other Family Members at OneGreatFamily

Make your genealogy experience more enjoyable by involving OneGreatFamily and those around you!

All of us that have taken on or been given the task of completing their family's genealogy have been given a great amount of responsibility. When we believe the task has become too great, it is important to remember that we are carrying out a great and priceless service for our family. Many think that the result of completing your genealogy is only a finished document of gathered records of your ancestors. When completing your genealogy, many other positive consequences can result, such as bringing your family closer together and creating an opportunity for constant learning throughout one's lifetime. Genealogy work is a task that is ongoing. New members are born into your family continually, and there are always unknown stories from the past that have yet to be told.

It is very important to preserve not only the stories of the past, but also the stories of those that are alive today. Make your genealogy experience more enjoyable by involving those around you! Ask family members to tell stories or thoughts about their past. Ask them what treasures are most important to them. Involving all age groups in the process can help to close the gap between generations and create a stronger sense of family. OneGreatFamily is a great program for those that are just beginning, such as children because it is a user-friendly program that produces great results when only a few names are submitted.

OneGreatFamily is just another simple way to help bring your family closer together. By using OneGreatFamily you and those family members you have collaborated with will create a treasured piece of family history that will be passed down from generation to generation.

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Q&A: Are there different ways to view my family tree in the Starfield?

How do I change the appearance of my Starfield?

There are a variety of ways to view the Starfield. You may view it as a pedigree, see descendants, show common connections, zoom in and out, show all generations or limit them, show the split screen with the Handprint, or view only the Starfield.

To change the way you view the Starfield select "View" on the menu in the Genealogy Browser. Or you can click the links below for complete descriptions on how to see the different views in the Starfield.

Show Children
Show Common Connections
Toggle Handprint/Starfield

You can also adjust your view of the Starfield through user preferences. Select File-User Preferences to adjust the Genealogy Browser to your liking. Your user information and preferences provide both essential information about you as a participant in OneGreatFamily and also specify program settings. Be sure to keep your information current so we can keep you updated on new features added to OneGreatFamily. You can change your preferences as often as you like.

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Lisa Lights the Way

Calendar Change

by Lisa South, Certified Genealogist

I felt so smart!! They had just asked the $1,000,000 question on a popular game show and I knew the answer (believe me it was a first!). The reason I knew the answer is because it was about the calendar change and as a genealogist, I had learned the importance of understanding how this change affected historical records.

During the time of Julius Caesar, the calendar was very inaccurate and he set about to improve it. He did a great job, but there was still a small error - each year, the calendar was over 11 minutes off. It doesn't sound too important, but after 128 years it was a full day off! By the time Pope Gregory XIII decided a change had to be made, the calendar was 10 days behind the actual time. In 1582, the Pope declared that the Catholic world would begin using his new calendar, the Gregorian calendar. The Gregorian calendar is almost perfect, but to bring the world up to the right starting time, the Pope declared that the calendar would "skip" the next 10 days and that October 4, 1582 would be followed by October 15, 1582. New Years day was also changed from March 25th to January 1st.

Not everyone was ready to accept the new calendar. There were even rioters who insisted that the 10 days be given back to them. Not all countries were ready to make this change. When doing your research, find out what year the country you are researching changed over to the Gregorian calendar.

Great Britain did not accept it until 1751. By that Time, the Julian Calendar was 11 days off and so Parliament declared that September 2, 1752 would be followed by September 14, 1752. At the time, the American Colonies were part of Britain and so this is the year that the calendar change began impacting American records.

Eleven days and a change in the beginning of the New Year; is that really such a big deal? It can be! If you are searching church baptismal records and you see a record listing John, son of Henry Fear born the 5th of April 1730 and another record that lists Anne, daughter of Henry Fear the 20th of March 1730 you might conclude that these could not be siblings because they were born just a few weeks apart. With a knowledge of the calendar change the evaluation would be quite different. John was born the 5th of April, Anne was born eleven months later on the 20th of March - just before the New Year 1731 would begin (your need to remember that the year did not change in January back then).

In Quaker record, the month was usually represented with numbers. Prior to the calendar change it is important to remember that the date the 3 of the seventh month 1723 would mean the 3rd of September, not July.

Often you will see a date written Jan 12, 1757/8. This is called double dating and is a result of the calendar change. Beginning genealogists sometimes record this as "either 1757 or 1758", but actually the date is very precise. This person was born Jan 12, 1757 if using the Julian (or O.S., Old Style ) calendar but Jan 12, 1758 if you are reckoning by the Gregorian (or N..S., New Style)calendar.

You will find double dating in the months January, February and March (the ones affected by the change in the New Year). Occasionally you will find one in the other months but that is from someone doing it out of habit (the way we write the wrong year the first few months of a New Year). There were efforts to change the calendar before it actually happened, and some began double dating before the actual date of the calendar change.

One Great Genealogy Site Award


AfriGeneas is a site devoted to African American genealogy. It is also an African Ancestry research community featuring the AfriGeneas mail list, state specific African Ancestry mail lists, AfriGeneas message boards and AfriGeneas daily and weekly genealogy charts.
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