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Legacy Tip - Who Is Missing an Obituary?

The reactions I got from showing this Legacy tip in a recent webinar made me feel like I was the Legacy King for a day. The comments just kept coming and coming, as if this was the greatest thing since sliced bread. It's a tip I use to keep track of who has obituaries and who does not.

Below is a screenshot of my Descendant View. It begins with Asa Brown and shows two generations of his descendants. Notice that the far right column is one that you do not normally see in the Descendant View, but if you follow these steps to record an obituary, it will be simple to see which of Asa's descendants lack this type of a record.


As I demonstrated in this webinar (see minute 11:07 in the section) and in Legacy Unlocked!, obituaries can be added as an Event in the Individual's Information screen.


The "Edit Event" screen for Lorenzo Brown looks like this:


Because I entered the obituary as an event (I also added its citation to the appropriate pieces of data), it is possible for it to be displayed in the Descendant View. Here's how:

1) In the Descendant View, click on the Options button on the right (just below the Print button).

2) Then click on Customize Columns.

3) Next, click on the button with the three dots in the next available row.


4. Next, click on the Event... option and click the Select button 


5. Click on Obituary and click the Select button, then click Close.


The Obituary column will now appear in the Descendant View.


Now, between,, Chronicling America and more, you can get busy looking for the missing obituaries.

Additional Resources

Watch Geoff Live: Adding Online Records to Legacy webinar


Legacy QuickGuide: Obituaries in Genealogy by Cari A. Taplin

Obituaries in Genealogy

How to Find Your Family History in Newspapers by Lisa Louise Cooke



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Genius!!! Thank you!

Thanks for the excellent tip for adding obituary.

Do I ever use the Descendant View? No, I don't. I add and change columns in the Index View all the time to fit my needs. Guess I need to take a look at the Descendant View. I add all sorts of Events, including Obituary, and had no idea you could do this. Thanks Geoff!

That could work with grave marker pictures too! To know which you have and don't have when searching Find A Grave

Great tip! Kind of reminded me of something I have used in the past for Find-A-Grave memorials or other burial indexes. I had a Marriage Index for that county printed up and as I searched through the cemetery records I would find the probable spouses and see if I could 'connect' them via the Marriage Index (in my example it was Cullman County, Alabama) especially when they were buried with the same marker I'd say there is a pretty good chance they were a married couple! ;-)

Also wondering in reference to Surname Research (my example: Carlisle in Jefferson County, Alabama) I'm going through the Death Index (1908-1974 for AL) at Family Search and chronologically listing 1) all deceased persons with the surname then 2) all deceased persons whose father has the surname then 3) all deceased persons whose mother has the surname and lastly 4) all deceased persons whose spouse has that surname AND not listing any entries as repeats in any of the previous listings. So Listing 2 (father's surname as Carlisle) would NOT repeat listings from Listing 1 (deceased with the surname Carlisle). Instead Listing 2 would include mostly women whose maiden names were Carlisle. I'm comparing if they have possible memorials at Find-A-Grave and obit listings on the Birmingham Public Library website.

My question is it better to make a listing of ALL of these people chronologically and include all of them and see if any of them might be 'matches' to the same family and THEN search for them in other records such as census, military (at Fold3), city directories, etc.

OR should I take each individual one at a time such as if the first listing is for someone with the surname Carlisle who died in Jefferson Co, AL in 1908 -- and find out as much as I can about THAT person and THEN on to the next person in the list, etc? Such as find them in the 1900 census before going on to the next person in the listing and doing the same one at a time like that?

Both methods seem to have their good and bad points.

I see that you have a media file attached. Is that the obituary?

Jeff - yes, this is a digital image of the obituary.

What a great idea. Thanks for this tip.

I agree with Diane Hall's comment above. Descendant view gives you a quick glance of what is missing or not. But I will pop back to Pedigree!.

Strange- I would consider an that reference a funeral notice :) An obituary would be a much longer detailed report of a person's life. --a difference in terminology, I guess, in different parts of the world.
A death and or funeral notice would be far more common than a detailed obituary.

Thank you for this great tip! I have been using the software for 10 years, and never noticed this capability.

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