FamilySearch Wiki talk:WikiProject Utah Experimental County

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Revision as of 17:34, 17 April 2012 by Wyzer17 (talk | contribs)

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Link of convenience to Project Page
Please make comments about anything and everything:

  • Color, content, ideas, suggestions.
  • What works for beginners, for experts?
  • What should be added, left out?

Please enter your comments under sections below. Be sure to sign by entering 4 tildes ~~~~. Thank you.AdkinsWH 18:51, 17 January 2012 (UTC)

General comments

Wilma, the construction in the Sandbox is WONDERFUL,  so colorful, and such immediate feed back. I would stay on the Utah Project just because it is immediate success.  Fabulious construction.  Thank you for all of your hard work!!! Wyzer17 15:34, 28 December 2011 (UTC)

Way to experiment! I love looking at new ways to do things. Two comments: 1)I think the page is really long and when it has more data in it it will get even longer. Is there a way to break it up into a series of pages rather than one really long page? Just a thought. 2) I would love to see some step-by-step guidance for finding births, marriage, death, etc.loosledc 19:29, 18 January 2012 (UTC)

Table at top


  • What about the yellow as the middle color. To me yellow says "light bulb" with works with "ideas". Also wondering about a tan or something for the third color. Don't know what the meanings of colors are. Love the green as the first color. Like you said, Joy, green means "go." AdkinsWH 21:13, 17 January 2012 (UTC)
  • Interesting experiment. I like the idea of the table.
    • You may want to share the idea of the table with an instructional designer and see what they might add.
    • Not sure what the colors mean.
    • The census years listed are a bit misleading. It gives the impression for those who are less familiar with census records that there is a census for every year from 1856-present. Is there another way to do this such as "Beginning 1856" or "Earliest 1856"? loosledc 19:25, 18 January 2012 (UTC)
  • I love that you have directed them to other counties what Beaver residents may be from. loosledc 19:31, 18 January 2012 (UTC)

Implemented Suggestions:

  • Wilma and others who visit this page.  I have changed the colord on the first table, but feel they are not as inviting as more vibrant colors.  Would love you input.  Thank you! joy 20:51, 17 January 2012 (UTC)
    Thanks, Joy. I'll take a lookAdkinsWH 21:09, 17 January 2012 (UTC)
  • Wilma ...  I fixed your spacing at the top of the TOC box where it is level with your Infobox  Jane evancol 21:19, 17 January 2012 (UTC)
  • Add a panoramic picture at the top, not just a stark table. Contributor's meeting 17 Jan and admin meeting 18 Jan
Job added a panormic view. WOW! Talk about more interesting! AdkinsWH 18:42, 19 January 2012 (UTC)

Style guide


  • I think the page is really long and when it has more data in it it will get even longer. Is there a way to break it up into a series of pages rather than one really long page? Just a thought. loosledc 19:29, 18 January 2012 (UTC)
    • While I agree it is really long the TOC should negate most of that if done correctly. Klaw 13:54, 29 February 2012 (UTC)
    • Long lists of items:
    • columns
    • link to a separate page
    • Short list with a More link
  • Color, icons
    • What about using a light bulb and the color yellow on the pages for suggestions, not just words.AdkinsWH 18:53, 17 January 2012 (UTC)

Implemented Suggestions:

  • Use Bullets for each item listed under a topic or heading.
    • Exception: blurb that explains more about the heading should be on the margin
  • Use SHORT paragraphs. Computer screen space is limited, people bypass paragraphs longer than 1 or 2 lines
  • Using "templates" for repeated content in counties.
    • FHL and Allen County Public Library blurb

 Find and use records section

(Was located above Resources on the table of contents)


  • Move this below resources. The term "Find records" should work for beginners and not interfere with experts. (Comments from meeting17 Jan, 2012)

Implemented on the Experimental page:

  • Moved the section down. Moved what was under "repositories" to this section. Created a separate section called "Guides to using records".AdkinsWH 19:24, 17 January 2012 (UTC)

Genealogical topics

The topics listed below are targeted for the Utah Wiki Project. Treat it as a "parking lot" for ideas or sources we don't want to forget when we are ready to work on that topic.


Church Records


Court Records

Land and Property


Back to obits area of experimental page.

Discussed in 4 Apr 2012 and 11 Apr 2012 meetings.

  • Must treat with Newspapers as well. Has this been done adequately?

Questions: if include, where:

(MJM) write a few inviting phrases to link to the state page for that topic and rotate them on the county pages so they aren't reduntant.

Not sure everyone reads state page -- miss information.

When we come to a record type: how to use the resource, and list of resources. Statement: to effectively use these resources and link to that place Consistent from county to county. Tip to that county is when we use the tip icon. (Jana)

Or give a juicy tip, and then direct them to the tips area for that topic.

A design committee meets every Fri morn. Now no overall structure, but being organized to help direct users more easily. It will become more evident. Wiki easier, more transparant (James)

  • Review what is at state, US levels. Do we need to add, embelish? Include major online resources (for recent and historical obits).
  • Usually written from information given by family. State page (tip)
  • info may be inaccurate (family biases?)  State page (tip)
  • written by funeral directors or newspapers editors who write from information given by the family (state or tip)
  • mention of war service, accomplishments; education; religion; names of surviving family, sometimes those who died before. (teaching and explaining area (state or US)
  • Popular since around 1870's. (teaching and explaining area (state or US)
  • Published in newspapers (at a cost), sometimes kept by funeral homes (helpful if not in a newspaper) (JS: my grandfather and great-grandfather being  newspaper editors would say most people couldn't write so well so a favorable obit was written by newspaper editor from his interviews with the family;
  • Substitutes: Funeral home programs.

[JS: What if we sqoze bullet 3  & 4 into one line? Done

Should we add a bullet reminding people that recent obits can be found on-line on local newspaper websites? So straight forward but surprising how a death will inspire a young person to start geneo...yet they didn't think to save an obit and don't know the contact info for the relative who would have it!

  • How shall we word this? Use several, or a few and link to a US page?

I also wondered about whether there should be a bullet mentioning how local historical societies often have compilations of clipped obituries and/or good local newspaper collections on microfilm. Maybe the later isn't so applicable for Utah?] Does the line following the bullets accomplish this?

State or US page (tip)

Jana: if I knew about a collection that applies specifically to that county, it should then be added as a bullet on the county. Help them know what exists

recognize that people will add to it. and change the structure.

After the project is done, put in watchcare of moderator and assistants.

On the pages, give new people a way, a place to add it without stepping on another contributor's toes. Especially when we don't understand or want to correct another person's writing. (Jana)

(James) supposed to relinquish ownership, coherent is a function of talk pages. If no one responds within a reasonable time, go ahead.  Utah project revisited in X year(s)

Links broken, items put in "wrong" pages (MJM)
Instructions on discussion page: annotate the Wiki: there is a separate CW page, please use that.

The further east, the more needed it is.

What if we used a badge similar to this? (Right justified it?)

And changed title to something like: ENHANCE YOUR RESEARCH! or FIND MORE! And changed the test to something like: Visit the Utah Newspaper page to receive tips and learn principles regarding researching this record type.

Probate Records

Resource Repositories


Link to Libraries on Experimental County page

Summary of decisions to this point in the conversation

  • Bullets used with text of "four" or less items
  • Headings used for "five" or more items with only pertinent explanations Note: this decision may not be in graniteAdkinsWH 05:03, 11 April 2012 (UTC)
  • No extra lines between bullets will be used - keep text together

Discussions were in the following meetings:

Suggestions from Feb 1 community meeting
Put a link to these under the state page

  • WorldCat. Locate books near your zip code (About) Unless there is a good explanation, people can't really use it easily
  • FHL Utah, BeaverFamilySearch Library, Salt Lake City, UT (About)
  • Allen County Public Library, Ft. Wayne, IN (About)
  • U, Special collections, BYU, Utah State, DUP (in each county), SUP, Church History Library, State Archives, State Historical Society

Feb 22 meeting:

Feb 29 meeting:

Mar 7 meeting:

Don't forget:

  • Interlibrary loan

Yet to be addressed:

  • List only libraries that have collections - or list others as well
  • Link to Utah Archives and Libraries page from each county
  • Format for gathering information - not yet decided
  • Pictures of Libraries would be helpful

Vital Records



  • Western States mg index


  • I would love to see some step-by-step guidance for finding births, marriage, death, etc.loosledc 19:29, 18 January 2012 (UTC)

Wilma and Pictures

Please send the pictures.  I have time to put them up.

Thank you!

joyjoy 18:17, 26 January 2012 (UTC)

Offer to help create a template

Hi, I see that you have made great progress with this project to include a summary of county records in a table at the top of county pages. Would you like some assistance in converting your table into a template with parameters that can be used to insert the specific information for each county? If so just let me know. --Steve (talk| contribs) 23:26, 8 February 2012 (UTC)

Wilma replied to my offer on my talk page (see User talk:Cottrells#Table_in_Utah_Experimental_County). As a result of the positive response I have created a new template {{US County records}} based on the code used in the article. Having created the template I have now swapped out the code and put in the template with the parameters that have been used for this example. The only difference a person will see is that table now refers to "WikiProject Utah Experimental County residents" as that part of the template uses the page name to create that line of text. When the template is used on a real page the text will make more sense. I used the same anchor link words in the template as were used in the table, but I notice that some do not work, for example there is no section called "Land" rather there is one called "Land and Property". Also there is no "Probate" section - the section being named "Probate Records". I also note that the "Birth", "Marriage" and "Death" sections are formatted in white text with additional coloured boxes with the same titles displayed underneath! Is this really necessary? --Steve (talk|

contribs) 18:20, 27 February 2012 (UTC)

We are using this page to experiment with anything and everything, including whiting out the words to a link and trying a colored bar instead. At this point, we are unlikely to ever implement this experiment. Thanks for noticing and for creating that great template. AdkinsWH 21:25, 20 March 2012 (UTC)

Context ideas

23 Feb w/Beth Longley

Restate when birth records start, and where originals are housed

Where people can get them including microfilm, internet, archive

When state starts and how to get those

Do they have the same info (state or county), is one better, cheaper, how does county allow access?


Type of information b records have

  • Name of child usually (some not yet named at time records was created
  • DOB, POB usually
  • Fathers name frequently (In some cases may be blank when father not known or not reported)
  • Father's age sometimes, occupation sometimes, bp seldom
  • Mothers given name usually
  • Mother's age sometimes, # of previous births (sometimes)
  • Mother's BP seldom
  • Maiden name frequently . In earlier records (years?) may be less often
  • Date of registration (is there a clue in that?)
  • Informant frequently (relationship?)
  • Clerk usually
  • Dr or midwife usually

Types of birth records

  • Midwife, MD, hospital, other

Rather than a long list of all these, use a More link

Make it visually appealing

Icons ready to review

 Tip 2.jpg 

Light Bulb.png
This is the remember light bulb - remember to do the following:

Llave bronce.jpg
This is the key to unlocking all researching tips you would ever want to know.

Notepad icon.svg.png
For digital newspapers, the quality of the image affects the accuracy of your searches. Early issues may be low quality. Suggestion: look at a microfilmed copy of the newspaper. Better yet, find an original if at all possible.

Nuvola apps kwrite.png

Take notes

Colored pencils.jpg

Caution Sign.svg.png

For digital newspapers, the quality of the image affects the accuracy of your searches. Early issues may be low quality. Suggestion: look at a microfilmed copy of the newspaper. Better yet, find an     original if at all possible.

Clouds - possible icon for online resources

Cumulus clouds in fair weather.jpeg
"online icon"

Comment on Newspapers

I suggest we link to pages about each category of repository. For example, we should have a U.S. Page about the Library of Congress' s Chronicling America project including how to use the newspaper section. The information about how to use the Newspapers could be on that page Library of Congress

On Thu, Mar 22, 2012 at 11:44 AM, Jana Stokes <> wrote:

So this conceptual way of organizing/heading-things could be applied to probate records, newspapers, vital records, etc. The goal is to make headings that are "problem solvers" for people with heading one being the first choice of solving the majority of patrons needs.

Heading One: Fully searchable newspaper resources

These will almost always be online. In fact the only exception I can think of would be OCR searchable PDF file within library or society that while on a CD or the libraries "intranet" is NOT made available to the public on the cloud. Fully searchable are powerful (usually online, yippie!) problem solvers, often they are the larger collections thereby a patron would stand a higher probability of finding what they need right from the get go since more records will be searched with a single click. Would include things like a google book (if the book was OCR searchable) of Beaver county newspaper abstracts.

Heading Two: Indexed and abstract newspaper resources

These may or may not be on-line. USGenWeb might have an on-line index. (clearly not as potentially problem solving as fully searchable which would pick a name in an obit even if it was listed as parent or child whereas the on-line index would only pick up the dead person). But this heading would pick up more traditional books (including google non-OCR books) or catalogs (Early Church Info File?) --again these may or may not be on-line; but the key is that they are secondary problem solvers.

Heading Three: Originals and/or digital (nonsearchable and/or un-indexed or "not-yet-indexed") and/or microfilms

These stand the least probability of being on line (ie: microfilms) but if they are digitalized but not indexed they should be listed as resources. And this heading is needed because even if a record is identified in a Heading One source or Heading Two Source the researcher may need to know more about how to tract down an image. (Esp significant for just a name index.)

Heading names/titles obviously would need tweaking but I think now you can see the idea and why trying to separate things into online and non-online was driving me nuts---it didn't really help me solve a problem and there are too many things that are half on-line/have not (ie: Chronicalling America -some just catalog ref ..not digital...others digital) or in the gray area.

A while back you made a comment along the lines of "prime real estate". Heading one is prime real-estate - this category should solve as many problems as possible and quickly before we loose the readers attention and before we ask the reader to enter the beginning world of research in heading two.