Talk:World Archives Project: Rhode Island, Vital Extracts County Records, 1636-1850

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Revision as of 13:22, 27 January 2013 by Hardcoal (talk | contribs) (Questions and Answers)
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Standard Copy and paste the text below into the discussion tab on the wiki:

Feel free to add to or edit information in this discussion tab as necessary. Please take time to become familiar with the General Keying Standards and be sure to read all instructions on the main project page. (Please note that in case of a discrepancy, project level instructions always trump general keying standards.)

Extra Keying Helps

If you are keying Quaker records prior to 1752 the numbering of the months does not follow our typical numbering. Please refer to the chart below.

Common Keying Errors Found by Reviewers

Do not key Jr in given or surname fields. Per keying guidelines: In cases where the name is listed as Rev. John Smith, or John Smith, Jr, and there is not a prefix or suffix field the name should be entered with John in the Given Name field and Smith in the Surname field, without either prefix or suffix. Keying Standards -- Wiedwoman 21:35, 17 December 2012 (UTC)

Do not key any ranks that may appear.

Please check that you have keyed the Event City if it appears at the top of the page. Even though the city name may appear only once on the image, if you miss it out of every record on the page, it could have a bad effect on your accuracy stats! --Katerimmer 12:05, 18 December 2012 (UTC).

Questions and Answers

If you have a keying question that is not answered on the project page or in any of the information above, click “EDIT” and ask it here. (If you click on Rich Editor you won't have to worry about formatting your entry.) Then click “WATCH” at the top right on this page and you will be notified via email when an update has been made.

Q: Double-dating: If a record has the following date, "Feb. 20, 1743-4," how would you key the year?

A: Therefore the date should be recorded "Feb. 20, 1744". The double date satisfies the Julian and Gregorian calendars. Since we use the Gregorian calendar, today, then you use the latter year. See: The Problem of Dates--Hardcoal 23:40, 27 December 2012 (UTC)
A: This is not a Quaker format date as it gives the name of the month rather than the number, and it should be keyed as Feb 20 1743. --Katerimmer 23:43, 27 December 2012 (UTC)
A: You are correct the date recorded in the scanned book is not in the Quaker Date format it has already been "corrected" for the number, number, number format (since the Quakers did not use the name of the month derived from pagan gods names and they also still used the Julian Calendar). Please read the link: The Problem of Dates. "Although March 25 was the beginning of the year prior to 1752 for ecclesiastical, legal, and civil purposes, since Norman times, January 1 was considered to be the beginning of the historical year. This gave rise to a double dating system in some places -- between January 1 and March 25. If a person's birth date was 25 February 1741, the date might be written 25 February 1741/42. This showed that he was born 25 February 1741 under the Julian calendar, but in 1742 under the Gregorian calendar. Even after England and her colonies changed the Gregorian calendar in 1752, this double dating system was continued by some colonial record keepers. This is confusing because some record keepers used double dating and some didn't; some continued it after 1752 and others didn't. It's very inconsistent and it helps to be aware of this." --Hardcoal 00:00, 28 December 2012 (UTC)
A: As far as I know, whenever one of these double years appears, we are keying the first year shown, regardless of whether it was a Quaker date or any other. This has been the same on many WAP projects but I will see if I can find if there has been an official confirmation of this. --Katerimmer 11:03, 28 December 2012 (UTC)
A: Kate is correct. In the Church Records field help for year, which I can now see wasn't added for the County and Newspaper records, we ask that when a year range is given to key the first year. Annafechter 19:26, 28 December 2012 (UTC)

Q: Anna, please source your "answer" with a link to the source to back up your claim. I cannot find it. Who is "we". I attempted to contact support on this issue as well and have not heard back from them yet. BTW, I found yet another article that supports my case, please read Double dateand 2 print books contain the same answer: Smith. Genealogical Dates: A User Friendly Guide. 1994. and then Webb. Dates and Calendars for the Genealogist. (out of print) 1989. London. --Hardcoal 18:11, 13 January 2013 (UTC)

A: Anna is in charge of all projects of WAP. When Anna tells any of us her decision, we will usually post it. Her decisions are the final say in all matters of WAP projects. -- Wiedwoman 18:46, 14 January 2013 (UTC)

Hardcoal and all, The answer regarding which year to key came after discussion with the Content Manager resposible for this project and other staff members. When making decisions such as which date, location, etc to key we review the project as a whole, take into consideration the time period, and location of the records and other criteria to decide how the project should be keyed. As to who I am, I am Anna Fechter and by title am the Community Operations Manager at and currently manage the World Archives Project. On the message boards Ancestry staff show with the leaf but on the wiki there isn't a distinction for staff - generally you will hear from Lizzy, aka lizzypetersen, and me, aka annafechter or afechter.
Also bear in mind that this book already contains a mixture of Julian and Gregorian pre-1752 dates and therefore whichever year is selected from the "double years" it would not mean that the pre-1752 dates in the book become standardised to one format or the other. A quote from the introduction to the Newport County section of the book demonstrates that this is true: "We have not changed dates here given, but we give it just as it stands on the record itself. We have observed, however, that the Scotch year is more general in this county than in any others that have come to our notice". --Katerimmer 18:14, 14 January 2013 (UTC)

A: Anna, your statements above still leave room for reasonable doubt. However, thank you Katerimmer, for giving the actual quote from this specific record book (which I am not privy to). A "Scotch Date" can be an exception based on my research. It is however an exception and not the main rule. --Hardcoal 20:22, 27 January 2013 (UTC)

Q: Copy from above: Are records, not stating the father and mother (i.e. "of William and Sarah"), but are directly below ones stating a father and mother of the same family? Therefore, would I just copy down the father and mother from above assuming the following record represents a child of that family until another mother and father are listed?

A: Yes -- Wiedwoman 22:55, 27 December 2012 (UTC)

Q: On Births and deaths record, when a male is listed with birth and death info, followed by a female with 'his wife' and birth and / or death info, followed by children of the couple, should the spouse name be included with any of the birth and death entries, only the death entries, or neither? In the screenshot link, the wife has no death info listed. See Screenshot link.

A: I would add the name of the wife with the birth info of the spouse. Then add her spouse to the line with her birth. -- Wiedwoman 15:50, 28 December 2012 (UTC)

Q: When something is in parentheses after a name, as shown in the screenshot link, should it be entered as the Town or the maiden name.  On the 1st entry, it looked like it was the maiden name, but the 2nd entry makes it look like it might be the town.    This was found in the Scitaute, RI births and deaths records.

A: This is the place that person was born (Providence). -- Wiedwoman 15:50, 28 December 2012 (UTC)

Q: Some city names will appear just before the date in parenthesis, substitute that city name as the event city in these cases? Sometimes it will also say something like "married in", but not always --Hardcoal 18:17, 27 December 2012 (EST)

Q. If one record in Births and Deaths file has the male listed as a child with DOB, then the next record lists the same person with the same DOB, then the next record lists his wife's name and DOB, should the male's name and DOB be listed a second time? It doesn't seem like it should be duplicated.

A: If everything on the line is a duplication from the line above, no you would not key it again. -- Wiedwoman 04:22, 29 December 2012 (UTC)

Q. What should be done with Suffix for father? Nothing since there is no field or should it be entered in the Given name fieldas seen in the record?

A: Do not key Jr in given or surname fields. Per keying guidelines: In cases where the name is listed as Rev. John Smith, or John Smith, Jr, and there is not a prefix or suffix field the name should be entered with John in the Given Name field and Smith in the Surname field, without either prefix or suffix. [1] -- Wiedwoman 21:35, 17 December 2012 (UTC)

Q: What does two asterisks ** after the parents' names in birth/death records mean?

A: Can you tell us the page number and what it says at the top of the page, please, and the names from the entry, so we can find it in the book and see whether there is an explanation of the asterisks in there? --Katerimmer 17:35, 2 January 2013 (UTC)

Q:  On pg. 34 of the Rhode Island County Records the title on the page says marriages.  Some of the people have m. by... and a date.  Others just have a date.  Are these without the "m by... and date" considered marriage certificates?

A: They would be marriages. -- Wiedwoman 16:31, 25 January 2013 (UTC)

Q: Following up on the question re parents above - when I am keying multiple pages and the children born at the top of the second page are a continuation of the family being keyed at the bottom of page one (i.e. a continuing record of the children of William and Catherine Pierce, in this case), should I carry over the parents from page 1 to page 2? Or should I treat each index image as a stand alone document, and since parents are not noted for the seven children who are first listed on page 2, these fields should remain blank?

A: Treat each page as a stand-alone document unless it states not to in the instructions. It is not in the instructions so key each page as a stand-alone document. -- Wiedwoman 16:30, 25 January 2013 (UTC)

Q: Following that theory, I should assume that there is no Event City for the births and deaths on page 2 of my set, correct? The header at the top of even-numbered pages does not provide the location of the events; the location is only noted on odd numbered pages. --Kennebec63 17:20, 25 January 2013 (UTC)

A: Yes that is correct. Only key information from the page that you see. -- Wiedwoman 17:35, 25 January 2013 (UTC)


If you have a suggestion or would like to make an addition to the project page, click “EDIT” and post your suggestion here. (If you click on Rich Editor you won't have to worry about formatting your entry.) Then click “WATCH” at the top right on this page and you will be notified via email when an update has been made.