How I use Hashtags to track my DNA matches

Thanks to Michele Simmons Lewis, CG for this article.

Hashtags

(Click to enlarge.)

I track both my atDNA (autosomal) matches and my yDNA matches in Legacy using Hashtags.

When working with atDNA, if I know how the person matches me I go ahead and add their tree (their direct line) back to our Most Recent Common Ancestor (MRCA). I use a special Master Source to the new data called, "DNA Match - Lineage not confirmed." As I have time, I collect the evidence I need to confirm their line and then I change the source citations.

Next, I add a hashtag to the tester and to each person in his/her direct line and to those in my direct line back to our MRCA. If there is more than one tester that has the same MRCA that person will get hashtagged on the same hashtag. I name the Hashtags like this...

MRCA - Graham, Albert and Mary Grantham
MRCA – Patton, Mathew and Caroline McMichael
MRCA - Simmons, James and Corrine Graham
MRCA - Simmons, William and Docia Perry
etc.

Now all of the testers with known MRCAs with me will be entered and the testers will be grouped by which MRCA they match.

I handle yDNA in the same way EXCEPT if I have a good yDNA match I will input the tester and his direct line even if I don't know the most MRCA is. These testers and their direct lines will be entered as unlinked trees (Add > Add Unlinked).

These Hashtags look like this...

Simmons Group - Ephraim Simmons abt 1822
Simmons Group - William Simmons abt 1685
Simmons Group - William Simmons abt 1793
Simmons Group - James Simmons, Sr. 14 Aug 1764
Simmons Group - William G. Johnson NPE abt 1800

The name of the hashtag is the brick wall ancestor for each line. In the description field I have yDNA 67 marker match - TESTERS NAME (or however many markers they tested at) as well as some other helpful notes.

Since this is a SURNAME-based DNA test I also have many other Simmons groups as Hashtags and what I am looking for is any overlap. If I see that a certain Simmons has been hashtagged in more than one group that might give me the clue I need to start connecting some of the unlinked trees. Here is how I have these additional Hashtags set up:

Simmons Group - 10&20 Cons. LA Militia
Simmons Group - 13th Reg. MS Militia
Simmons Group - Amite Co, MS
Simmons Group - Bala Chitto
Simmons Group - Marion Co, MS
Simmons Group - Natchez District, MS
Simmons Group - Pike Co, MS
Simmons Group - Random Simmons' (I don't know how these guys fit in yet)Simmons Group - Silver Creek
Simmons Group - Washington Co, MS

I have all of the tester’s contact information entered on his/her address screen. I also create custom DNA events where I can record which company they tested with and their GEDmatch number if they have one. I can add screenshots of ethnicity reports and chromosome browsers results. I am also able to keep track of our correspondence in the Notes field.

I like keeping as much information as I can in Legacy which makes my DNA research less complicated.

Learn more about Hashtags

View the Hashtags section in this webinar or view the after-webinar party section in this webinar.


Tuesday's Tip - Label Those Tags!

  Legacy Family Tree Tuesday's Tip - Label Those Tags!

Tuesday's Tips provide brief how-to's to help you learn to use the Legacy Family Tree software with new tricks and techniques. 

Label Those Tags!

Whenever you use tagging (see the numbered boxes in the image 1-9 - those are tags), make sure you go to TOOLS > ADVANCED TAGGING and label the tags so that you know what is on what tag. It is VERY easy to forget what you have tagged especially if you have multiple tags in play. If you want to see what a particular tag means, you don't have to go back to this screen, you can simply hover over that tag number in the Family View or Pedigree View. 

In the example below, Tag 1 is used to help find some of Geoff's best ancestors!

Use Advanced Tagging to Label Your Tags!


For more about advanced tagging see this article: http://support.legacyfamilytree.com/article/AA-00949/0/Tagging-Advanced-Tagging.html

Find tech tips every day in the Facebook Legacy User Group. The group is free and is available to anyone with a Facebook account.

For video tech tips checkout the Legacy Quick Tips page.  These short videos will make it easy for you to learn all sort of fun and interesting ways to look at your genealogy research.

Michele Simmons Lewis is part of the technical support team at Millennia, the makers of the Legacy Family Tree software program. With over 20 years of research experience, Michele’s passion is helping new genealogists get started on the right foot through her writings, classes and lectures. She is the former staff genealogist and weekly columnist for the McDuffie Mirror and now authors Ancestoring, a blog geared toward the beginner/intermediate researcher.

 

 


Tuesday's Tip - Using Secret Bars

  Tuesday's Tip - Using Secret Bars in Legacy Family Tree

Tuesday's Tips provide brief how-to's to help you learn to use the Legacy Family Tree software with new tricks and techniques.

Using Secret Bars

There are some "secret" popup bars on the Family View of Legacy Family Tree. If you put your mouse cursor over certain areas this secret bar will pop up and you can then click it and it will do something. Most people find the one that allows you to scroll through a person's marriages on their own but there are more. Below are screenshots of secret bars that may be new to you.

Look for the RED arrow below in each photo to identify the location of the secret bar.

1. Rotate through husband's Spouses

Rotate through Husband's Spouses

2. Rotate through wife's Spouses

Rotate through Wife's Spouses

3. Rotate through siblings of highlight person

Rotate through siblings of highlight person

 4. Move preferred child up to main position

Move preferred child up to main position

5. Rotate through other parents of husband

Rotate through other parents of husband

6. Rotate through other parents of wife

Rotate through other parents of wife

 

Find tech tips every day in the Facebook Legacy User Group. The group is free and is available to anyone with a Facebook account.

For video tech tips checkout the Legacy Quick Tips page.  These short videos will make it easy for you to learn all sort of fun and interesting ways to look at your genealogy research.

Michele Simmons Lewis is part of the technical support team at Millennia, the makers of the Legacy Family Tree software program. With over 20 years of research experience, Michele’s passion is helping new genealogists get started on the right foot through her writings, classes and lectures. She is the former staff genealogist and weekly columnist for the McDuffie Mirror and now authors Ancestoring, a blog geared toward the beginner/intermediate researcher.

 

 


Tuesday's Tip - Added and Modified Dates

  Tuesday's Tip - Added and Modified Dates

Tuesday's Tips provide brief how-to's to help you learn to use the Legacy Family Tree software with new tricks and techniques.

Added and Modified Dates

Have you ever wondered when a person was added or last modified in your Legacy database?  There's a simple way to check!

In the Family View, if you click in the extreme bottom right corner you will get a popup box that will tell you when the person was added to your database, when they were last modified and if they were imported into your file. It will also give this information on the spouse so that you don't have to click the spouse separately.

 

Added and Modified Dates information in Legacy Family Tree

 

Find tech tips every day in the Facebook Legacy User Group. The group is free and is available to anyone with a Facebook account.

For video tech tips checkout the Legacy Quick Tips page.  These short videos will make it easy for you to learn all sort of fun and interesting ways to look at your genealogy research.

Michele Simmons Lewis is part of the technical support team at Millennia, the makers of the Legacy Family Tree software program. With over 20 years of research experience, Michele’s passion is helping new genealogists get started on the right foot through her writings, classes and lectures. She is the former staff genealogist and weekly columnist for the McDuffie Mirror and now authors Ancestoring, a blog geared toward the beginner/intermediate researcher.

 

 


Tuesday's Tip - Recording Unknown Names

  Tuesday's Tip - Recording Unknown Names 

Tuesday's Tips provide brief how-to's to help you learn to use the Legacy Family Tree software with new tricks and techniques.

Tuesday's Tip - Recording Unknown Names

Tip Level: Advanced 

Here is a really nifty trick. Have you ever wanted to record an unknown surname?

I recommended [—?—] because that is how unknown surnames are normally handled in the National Genealogical Society Quarterly (NGSQ) but someone remarked that Legacy was hitting on that as a Potential Problem.

Here is a copy and paste from the Help File:

"If you are entering something into either the given names field or the surname to indicate that the name is currently unknown, such as [—?—], NN, or ??? or something similar, these entries will normally cause a potential problems alert. If you would like to avoid the alerts on these name entries, you can do so by creating a file called UnknownName.txt in the [My Documents]\Legacy Family Tree\_AppData folder. The file should contain two strings consisting of one or more terms separated by space between each one. The first line is for unknown names that might be found in the Given Names field and the second line pertains to the Surname field. For example:

Child ???
[—?—] NN ???

You can create this file using a text editor."

I have an UnknownName.txt file. In my file the first line is blank because I have no given names that I want Legacy to skip (I always leave the given name field blank if I don't know what it is). My second link only contains
[—?—]
because that is the only thing I use for unknown surnames. The Help File shows 3 variations that you are telling Legacy to skip but that is for illustrative purposes only. No matter what you choose you need to be consistent so your UnknownName.txt file should only contain one entry on the second line.

 

Find tech tips every day in the Facebook Legacy User Group. The group is free and is available to anyone with a Facebook account.

For video tech tips checkout the Legacy Quick Tips page.  These short videos will make it easy for you to learn all sort of fun and interesting ways to look at your genealogy research.

Michele Simmons Lewis is part of the technical support team at Millennia, the makers of the Legacy Family Tree software program. With over 20 years of research experience, Michele’s passion is helping new genealogists get started on the right foot through her writings, classes and lectures. She is the former staff genealogist and weekly columnist for the McDuffie Mirror and now authors Ancestoring, a blog geared toward the beginner/intermediate researcher.


Tuesday Tip - Backup vs. Save As

Tuesday's Tips provide brief how-to's to help you learn to use the Legacy Family Tree software with new tricks and techniques.

  Tuesday's Tip - Backup vs. Save As


Many people get confused between the options of Saving Legacy, Backing up Legacy and using the Save As command. This overview will clarify the three commands.

Saving Legacy

Legacy saves your file on the fly. When you close your file everything has been saved. When you open Legacy, this file will open on your screen. I highly recommend you tell Legacy to do this by going to OPTIONS > CUSTOMIZE > GENERAL SETTINGS . In Option 1.2 pick the 1st or 3rd option. If you only have one file then pick the 3rd so that there is no question.

Backing Up Legacy

You should also backup your file on a regular basis. You will rarely if ever need to restore a backup. In 11 years I have only had to restore a backup one time and that is when I had a hard drive failure. You should save your backups somewhere other than your hard drive for that very reason.

Save As

There is a SAVE AS command. What this does is it saves an exact copy of your database file. There are reasons that you might do this but the average user will not/should not use this command.

Why am I telling you this? We get emails all the time from people that have been restoring backups every single time they open Legacy. We have people that use the Save As command instead of backing up. These people end up with hundreds of Legacy files on their computer and if they open the wrong one they email us in a panic because they say that all of the data they added yesterday or last week or last month is suddenly gone.

A clue that you have been doing one of the above is that you will see file names with numbers behind them in brackets or parentheses or they word "copy" in parenthesis.

When we tell people to search their entire hard drive for .fdb files (the Windows command is *.fdb) they are sometimes quite surprised by what they find.

Most people should only have two .fdb files on their computer, their working family file and the Sample file that comes with Legacy. There are people that have more than one file though, the One-Name Study people and the One-Place Study people for example. Also those people that are professional genealogists and do client work will have an .fdb file for each client. There are some people that have their side in one file and their spouse's side in another but we really don't recommend that.

 

Find tech tips every day in the Facebook Legacy User Group. The group is free and is available to anyone with a Facebook account.

For video tech tips checkout the Legacy Quick Tips page.  These short videos will make it easy for you to learn all sort of fun and interesting ways to look at your genealogy research.

 

Michele Simmons Lewis is part of the technical support team at Millennia, the makers of the Legacy Family Tree software program. With over 20 years of research experience, Michele’s passion is helping new genealogists get started on the right foot through her writings, classes and lectures. She is the former staff genealogist and weekly columnist for the McDuffie Mirror and now authors Ancestoring, a blog geared toward the beginner/intermediate researcher.


Legacy Tip - Syncing with FamilySearch to Solve Brick Walls

Did you know you can sync to FamilySearch without sharing any information to FamilySearch and without downloading any information from FamilySearch to your Legacy file?

Why would you want to do this?

This is especially helpful for brick walls. You can sync your brick wall and then wait. If you see your FamilySearch arrow turn from green to red you know that someone has edited your brick wall on FamilySearch. You can then open the FamilySearch screen, click the Changes tab (probably a good idea to click Refresh) and you will see what change was made and who made it. You can message the person by clicking the Goto Person link on the main FamilySearch screen to open up FamilySearch itself.

My #1 brick wall of all time is James Simmons, Sr. of South Carolina who was born 14 August 1764. This morning I noticed that James' arrow had changed to red. Four days ago someone added a child to James. I will be emailing this person as soon as I post this!

So how do you sync without uploading any information from Legacy to FamilySearch and without downloading any information from FamilySearch to Legacy?

Easy.

All you do is you go ahead and tell Legacy that a certain person on FamilySearch is a match.

Legacy will automatically add that person's FSID number to your person in Legacy. Now click the Share Data tab. Without transferring any information in either direction click the I am Finished Sharing Data. This will reset your arrows to green-green. I just clicked my button so that James will reset to green-green again.

 

Syncing with FamilySearch

 

Find tech tips every day in the Facebook Legacy User Group. The group is free and is available to anyone with a Facebook account.

For video tech tips checkout the Legacy Quick Tips page.  These short videos will make it easy for you to learn all sort of fun and interesting ways to look at your genealogy research.

Michele Simmons Lewis is part of the technical support team at Millennia, the makers of the Legacy Family Tree software program. With over 20 years of research experience, Michele’s passion is helping new genealogists get started on the right foot through her writings, classes and lectures. She is the former staff genealogist and weekly columnist for the McDuffie Mirror and now authors Ancestoring, a blog geared toward the beginner/intermediate researcher.

 

 


Legacy Tip: How do I enter adoptive parents?

When a child has been adopted he/she has two sets of parents, the biological set and the adoptive set.  It is very easy to enter two sets of parents in Legacy and this will allow you to follow both lines.  This is especially important now with DNA evidence leading adoptees to their biological families. 

In the Family View, the second icon from the left under the person you are working with is the Parents' icon which will bring up the Parents List.

You will do everything else on this screen.


You can see that you can add new parents here and you can also link to existing parents if they are already in your database.  After you add your new found biological parents this is what you will see.

Now that you have your unknown parents you can click the Add Father and Add Mother to enter the information you have about them.  Now you have this.


You only have one more thing to do.  You need to designate which set of parents are the adoptive parents.


Notice that I can mark the relationship as Private or Invisible.  I could highlight Expresso Coffee and Peeka Book and change their status to Biological but leaving the field blank is the default for biological parents.  It is up to you if you want to designate them this way.  To change which set of parents is preferred, highlight the set you want to show as preferred and then click the Select button at the top right.  The preferred parents will automatically display when you are navigating in the Family View.  If you want to switch to the other set of parents, hover to the side of the parents names and a bar will appear.  Click that bar and then you can rotate through the parents.




Tuesday's Tip - Printing a Duplicates List

Tuesday's Tip - Printing a Duplicates List
 

Tuesday's Tips provide brief how-to's to help you learn to use the Legacy Family Tree software with new tricks and techniques.

Printing a Duplicates List and some other options

A lot of people overlook the fact that you can print the possible duplicates list. The reason it is overlooked is that the print option is BEFORE you actually run the Find Duplicates routine.

Go to TOOLS > MERGE DUPLICATES > FIND DUPLICATES

This is where the Print option is. If you click PRINT it will run the routine and then give you option to print the report. Most people will click CONTINUE and then find that they can't print a report from the Merge screen.

Another thing that is overlooked is that on this same screen (where Continue and Print are) there is an OPTIONS button. There are some powerful options here :) You can restrict the Find Duplicates routine to your current search list, you can restrict it to tagged individuals and you can tag the output from running the Find Duplicates routine.

  Legacy Family Tree -  TOOLS > MERGE DUPLICATES > FIND DUPLICATES

Find tech tips every day in the Facebook Legacy User Group. The group is free and is available to anyone with a Facebook account.

For video tech tips checkout the Legacy Quick Tips page.  These short videos will make it easy for you to learn all sort of fun and interesting ways to look at your genealogy research.

Michele Simmons Lewis is part of the technical support team at Millennia, the makers of the Legacy Family Tree software program. With over 20 years of research experience, Michele’s passion is helping new genealogists get started on the right foot through her writings, classes and lectures. She is the former staff genealogist and weekly columnist for the McDuffie Mirror and now authors Ancestoring, a blog geared toward the beginner/intermediate researcher.


Tuesday's Tip - The Relationship Chart

  Tuesday's Tip - The Relationship Chart

 

Tuesday's Tips provide brief how-to's to help you learn to use the Legacy Family Tree software with new tricks and techniques.

My new favorite chart - the Relationship Chart

I have lots of favorite charts depending on what I am doing at any moment. 

I just looked on AncestryDNA and I have a brand new 2nd cousin match so I contacted her. This happens to be someone that is interested in her DNA and family history but isn't a genealogist so she was having a hard time visualizing our connection. As soon as she told me who her parents and grandparents were I knew where she belonged.

A picture is worth a thousand words so I added her and her parents (I already had her grandparents) to Legacy. I was then able to go to TOOLS > RELATIONSHIP and then I put myself in the left box and her in the right box. I finished the process by pressing PRINT.

I set up the report to look nice with minimal info so that it wouldn't be overwhelming and then I sent it to a PDF. I sent her the chart and she was so appreciative.  Not 15 minutes later someone contacted me about a match on Family Tree DNA. After a few questions back and forth he turned out to be a third cousin, once removed. Yup, I generated a chart for him and sent it to him.

I generated one for my dad and his first cousin Bobbie Joyce to give you an idea. The chart has the relationship between the two at the top and their grandparents are labeled as the "common ancestor." The direct line connection is in bold. This chart is so easy to understand even for the lay genealogist. 

Give it a try and share it with someone in your family!

 

Tuesday's Tip - The Relationship Chart

 

Find tech tips every day in the Facebook Legacy User Group. The group is free and is available to anyone with a Facebook account.

For video tech tips checkout the Legacy Quick Tips page.  These short videos will make it easy for you to learn all sort of fun and interesting ways to look at your genealogy research.

Michele Simmons Lewis is part of the technical support team at Millennia, the makers of the Legacy Family Tree software program. With over 20 years of research experience, Michele’s passion is helping new genealogists get started on the right foot through her writings, classes and lectures. She is the former staff genealogist and weekly columnist for the McDuffie Mirror and now authors Ancestoring, a blog geared toward the beginner/intermediate researcher.