Saturday, March 17, 2012

Getting Down to the Basics - A Review

Last weekend I wrote a post asking why people use genealogy databases and begging for specific answers. And I got them! Thanks to all who participated in the discussions here, on Google+ and on Facebook. Five bloggers (hope I haven't missed any, but if I did please let me know and I'll add to this list) posted in response.

I've read and re-read the responses, thought about my frustrations, and settled on a few things I want my Legacy database to do. 
  • Manage my source and repositories lists
  • Provide a master geographic locations list
  • Generate basic reports to share with those contacting me for more information 
  • Record conflicting information or problems
I will not be using Legacy in my digitizing project beyond entering appropriate source information. Many people commented that they used a database to organize documents and images. I don't need that. I can find the computer files I need quickly using my existing digital filing and tagging system. Now if there was a way that Legacy could organize the physical papers and photographs I'd be a lifetime devotee!

Nor will I be using Legacy for cluster research projects. I far prefer spreadsheets to sort and analyze information. I have used's online trees to gather census information and other source documents for small groups and will probably continue. But so far I don't see a genealogy database helping me with my group projects. 

I may learn new methods that will change these views. I joined a Legacy User Group to learn more about the program's features. I'm especially excited to have people I can bounce questions, ideas and problems off of. We'll see how excited they are after a month or two of my questions.

Read the comments on all the blog posts and social media platforms. There are as many ways to use the genealogy database programs as there are users. You may find an idea you hadn't considered. 

And thank you again to all who chimed in with your opinions. It was a marvelous discussion.


  1. It's great that you've determined exactly what you want to use Legacy for, Susan. With those clear objectives in mind and a user group to help you, I'm sure you'll be successful in making the program work for you. And you're right--I learned a lot by reading everyone's responses and comments.

    1. It's going to be interesting, Shelley. My goal is your narratives (though whether I ever have them within the database is questionable). I'm taking an unorthodox approach to say the least.

  2. Ok, I finally wrote mine, but don't laugh, it's a work in progress LOL!


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