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OneGreatFamily Guest Newsletter

May 4, 2006

See Your Family Tree Grow Overnight at OneGreatFamily

In This Issue:

Success at OneGreatFamily: See Your Family Tree Grow at OneGreatFamily

I did the 7 day trial and was amazed in 3 days

Hello ,

I wanted to send an email to let you know how much I love your program.

When I started researching my family tree 3 or 4 years ago, I ran into a brick wall and stopped. I recently got excited again and thought I would try again to grow my tree. I searched the internet everyday for programs that would help me locate more members, and found that each little program was going to cost me money. After I added all the memberships up, it was going to cost me a lot of money.

Then, I came across OneGreatFamily and Though it looks like has more access to records, I decided that I liked the idea that OneGreatFamily helped link what they find as matches. I did the 7 day trial and was amazed in 3 days. I started out with only 420 people in my database and within 3 days I had 6,000. But that is not even the greatest part. After about 7 days, I checked it again and had over 16,000 people added to my tree.

The coolest part is that I met a relative from my grandmother's side that I had never met before and we are now e-mailing each other. I also found out that I have kings, presidents, and countesses in my tree - how awesome is that!

Thank you for letting me share,
Jodi "Bowen" Jones

Have you had success using OneGreatFamily? Please let us know! Email us with your success story to be featured on our website.

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OneGreatFamily Tip: Definitions All OneGreatFamily Members Should Know

What are Merges, Hints, Groups, Handprint and Genmail at OneGreatFamily?

Included in the bottom of the Genmail e-mail is a list of definitions of the terms we use at OneGreatFamily. We believe that these terms should be well known to all OneGreatFamily members so you can fully understand how OneGreatFamily works:

Merges occur when our patent-pending Handprint™ matching system is certain that two people are the same. OneGreatFamily automatically merges the two together, preserving any differences in the combined record. This fuses the two trees together, which may have added more ancestors to your family tree. You can always undo a merge if you disagree.

Hints occur when our patent-pending Handprint matching system identifies two people who might be a match, but lacks enough information to be certain. Perhaps a number of dates or places are different, or the number of children don't match. Hints are identified in the Starfield by a light bulb icon. Although hints can often be easily resolved, accuracy is important to us at OneGreatFamily, and we will never merge two people unless we are certain.

A Group is simply a snapshot of the OneGreatFamily tree. All users in one group see the tree the same, where users in different groups can see the tree differently. You are automatically assigned to your own group when you sign up for OneGreatFamily, but you can create or join as many other groups as you wish. You might have a separate group with your brother and one with a family organization, in addition to your own private group. Each group could show a different birthday for your great-, great-grandfather. This GenMail is for only one group, identified in the heading. If you have multiple groups, you might receive multiple GenMails.

The Handprint matching system goes far beyond the searching systems used on other websites. It compares the names, dates, and locations for the individual as well as for his father, mother, spouse, siblings, and children. This means a single Handprint comparison typically involves over 45 unique assessments. From these assessments, using a proprietary scoring algorithm, the system calculates a confidence level to determine if it considers two people a match. In one test we recent ran, our system was a lot less likely to mistakenly merge two people than experienced genealogists.

GenMailis the name of OneGreatFamily's e-mail notification system. The OneGreatFamily automated searching system runs around the clock, checking every person entered against every person already in the OneGreatFamily family tree for matches. Each week you are sent an email that has all the results of OneGreatFamily's automated matching and merging system. This feature is only available to OneGreatFamily subscribers.

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Lisa Lights the Way

The Evolution of Language

by Lisa South, Certified Genealogist

The following article was written in the April 26, 2005 OneGreatFamily newsletter. Since Lisa is no longer writing for us, we are featuring some of our favorite articles written by her.

I was watching an old western. The homesteaders were in their cabin. A line of Indians was quietly sitting on their horses along the ridge. I sat aghast as the older homesteader turned to his younger brother and said, “Waste one of them!” The younger brother put his gun through the window and shot a bullet into the air to try and frighten the Indians away! The older brother meant, "Waste one of the bullets!!!!" I had a good laugh when I realized that I had interpreted the word "waste" in a modern "Dirty Harry" sort of context, but that's not how the word was used back in the days of the Wild West - or even when that old western was made.

Our language has and still continues to evolve, and this can cause some confusion as we try to evaluate early records, for example:

The term “my now wife” is one that appears in some probate records and is often misunderstood. A researcher may assume from this term that there was a previous marriage when in reality it is a term to limit the inheritance rights of a future marriage in case the “now wife” should die before the husband’s will is probated and he remarries.

Sometimes we find the terms “goodman” and “goodwife” (often shortened to goody) in older records. These terms just indicate the head of a household or the mistress of a household.

The title Colonel was often used by old southern planters and usually meant nothing as far as military service or rank. However, it adds an additional means of identification and that is helpful.

Among the very early colonists, Mr. & Mrs. were used only by the upper classes. Mrs. was not a term identifying a woman as married but rather as a woman of “gentle” birth.

Prior to 1750, the term “cousin” was given to almost anyone who was related outside of the immediate family. It was often used when, in reality, the person was a niece or nephew.

These are just a few examples. The important thing to realize is that the evolution of our language can impact our genealogical research, and the earlier the records, the more we should study what those changes were

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    Managing Editor: Heather Matthews
    Contributors: Heather Matthews, Lisa South and Rob Armstrong
    Editor: Lani Hyer

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