Changes in Family Tree Shed New Light on Your Ancestors’ Lives

September 4, 2018  - by 

FamilySearch’s newly released update to the person pages in Family Tree will make learning about your ancestors easier than ever before. Streamlined menus mean using the person page is now faster and more intuitive. New ways to view your ancestors’ lives and information, including maps and time lines, will expand your understanding and enable you to identify and fill in missing information more quickly.

Here are some of the most exciting changes you’ll find on the Family Tree person pages. (We’ve also provided links to more detailed instructions if you’d like to dive even deeper!)

Streamlining the Family Tree Person Pages

When you log in to your FamilySearch Account and make your way to the person page for one of your relatives, you’ll notice right away that it looks a little different. FamilySearch has updated this page to make it cleaner and easier to navigate. With the new updates, your relative’s information is also easier to edit!

Family tree, Time line, timeline, family history, genealogy

Family tree, family history, genealogy

As an example, the header and main menu at the top of the person page are now a lot simpler. Instead of the two-layer menu you saw before, all the choices have been incorporated into one menu. Most tabs take you to sections similar to what you’ve used before—just improved, spruced up, and renamed. You may also notice the new Edit tags in sections that didn’t have these before. You can easily edit your relative’s vital information and much more by clicking on these tags. There’s also an exciting new tool you can explore with this update! The Time Line tab introduces you to a completely new tool.

Be sure to also take a moment and look over the options on the sidebar on the right side of the page. Some of these have been rearranged and reorganized so you can accomplish many of the most common Family Tree tasks much easier. For example, you can now merge ancestors by ID as well as edit labels from this right sidebar. There’s even a newly added Data Problems alert that will appear if there are possible problems with your ancestor’s information, such as possible duplicates.

These changes will save you time as you explore your family history and add your discoveries to your family tree!

Time Lines and Maps: A New View of Your Ancestor’s Life

One of the focuses of this FamilySearch update is to help you put the events in your ancestor’s life in context. New time line and map tools are keys in doing this. These tools not only allow you to understand your ancestor’s life better, they also enable you to more easily identify missing events and possible errors in your ancestor’s information. Even better, the new tools take the next step by integrating record hints, leading you to sources that might help you solve problems you identify.

Clicking on the Time Line menu tab will take you to a screen that looks something like this:

Family tree, Time line, timeline, family history, genealogy

The time line displays all the major events in your ancestor’s life, allowing you to get an overview in just one glance. Click on the Show button to filter which events and relationships you would like to view. Icons, such as a baby for birth or rings for a wedding, identify what type of event it is. If an event is a relationship that involves another relative in your family tree, that relative’s picture and information will show up as well! Record hints may be included in their correct chronological place along the time line, such as this hint for a birth record.

You can also toggle the Map function inside the time line tab to view a map beside the information. Here, markers show you where these events in your ancestors’ lives took place. The time line displays all the major events in your ancestor’s life, allowing you to get an overview in just one glance. Click on the Show button to filter which events and relationships you would like to view. Icons, such as a baby for birth or rings for a wedding, identify what type of event it is. If an event is a relationship that involves another relative in your family tree, that relative’s picture and information will show up as well! Record hints may be included in their correct chronological place along the time line, such as this hint for a birth record.

You can also toggle the Map function inside the time line tab to view a map beside the information. Here, markers show you where these events in your ancestors’ lives took place.

Family tree, map, family history, genealogy

Record hints will also appear on the map, to give you clues as to a hint’s accuracy.

Now that you’ve gotten the overview, head over to FamilySearch, and look at some of your ancestors’ tabs to experience the exciting new changes! With these new tools and improved organization, it won’t be long before you’re identifying a missing piece of information, following a record hint, or making new discoveries about your relatives and adding them to your tree.

Leslie Albrecht Huber

Leslie Albrecht Huber has written for dozens of magazines and journals on genealogy and other topics. She currently does communications consulting and contract work for nonprofit organizations. Leslie received a bachelor's degree in history from Brigham Young University and a Master of Public Affairs (MPA) from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She has worked as a professional genealogist, helpingothers trace their families, and has spoken on genealogy and history topics to groups across the United States.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Comments

  1. What if the map has changed, like in Europe,for instants, Prussia doesn’t excised any more, other counties popped up, that were not there before, and will the map be from the RIGHT time frame? Or what it is now, which doesn’t help really, even cities have disappeared, swallowed up by water, by bigger other cities around them, wiped out by volcano’s, or sank in the ocean. You name it.

  2. elationships you would like to view. Icons, such as a baby for birth or rings for a wedding, identify what type of event it is. If an event is a relationship that involves another relative in your family tree, that relative’s picture and information will show up as well! Record hints may be included in their correct chronological place along the time line, such as this hint for a birth record.

  3. I love the time line. I wish that there was an event area such as who was president of the United states or something that states when a territory became a state or who was king or queen of an area at the time of their lives so that we might have some idea of the complexities they were having to deal with.

    for example I would like to know if there was only one port in Ireland from which country folk used to flee during the potato famine or did they have to leave the area by way of crossing the channel to England and then leave for the Americas

  4. Mary Eliabeth Feeney was born 9 July 1888. If someone has changed the vital information and will not correct it, I will remove the entire family tree.

  5. I’m very grateful and excited about the updated and new tools to help us, personally, with our family tree and as a formally called Family History Consultant and Ward Indexing Director; all of us are so very blessed by your desires to magnify your callings, with exactness and honor, in helping our Heavenly Father and Elder Brother and Savior, Jesus Christ, in the salvation of souls!

    Thank you, thank you so very, very much…I can’t wait to see/use new advancements to assist you, and Them, in this great work for our brothers and sisters on Earth and those beyond the Veil…!

  6. In the previous way, I’d do a Search of Sources by entering the person’s info, then
    the residence and-or parents’ and-or spouses’ names, etc. When I found a good source, I would attach it, then click the arrow at top left to go back to my filled-in Search page and look for more Sources. NOW, when I click that arrow to go back, all has disappeared and I have to go back to the person’s page and begin the Search again.. and again… and again. For the number of people I work with every day, this is awful. Is there something that I’m doing wrong now?