Getting Started "TNG"

Help - How to Navigate this Site

Click on any of the following links to go direct to the particular topic:

Please let us know if you have needed help on something not covered in this section or in my Frequently Asked Questions

Welcome to our website. This Help page will give you a short overview of how to get around and get the most out of my site. It will hopefully give you the basic navigation tools needed to make your visit both enjoyable and informative without a lot of difficulty. Please keep in mind that this section is in no way a complete how-to guide, and you may have to be a registered user and logged in (use the Login  link on the menu bar) to see/use some of these features. Also, if you find any errors or want to make corrections or suggestions, you can learn how (see Editing/Correcting below).

Many people use one genealogical program or another and nearly all of them have a very graphical look to them. You can see your family group sheets, display charts, etc. This website is much the same except that, instead of it being on your computer, it is on the internet. This walk-through will introduce you to the primary functions of the site. The bold, links embedded on this page will open a second window (or tab); you can follow these steps in the new window/tab while referencing the steps here. In either case, the following link opens a new window (or tab) to my Home Page. Features of that page can be seen and the window/tab can also be used to explore the features discussed below.

On the home page you will see links to the various sections of the site, links to my Father’s and Mother’s ancestors, and a Search box on the right side of the page.

Getting around the site:

To begin, click on any link and you will notice that every page contains a set of five icons directly under the page header. The function of each icon link is quite straightforward:

 Home – Takes you to the front page of the website.
 Search – Takes you to the Advanced Search screen (see below).
 Logout/Login – Logout of your session or Log back in.
 Print – Prints the page you are on to your printer without all the menu items.
 Bookmarks – This lets you keep a list of your favorite pages on this site.

On the right hand side of the header, you will see four drop down menus: Find – Media – Info – Other. These can be used to quickly access any area of the site. If you hover the mouse (not click) you will see drop-down boxes that give you more menu options to help navigate this site.

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The Individual Record:

In the search box (right side of home page), put “Relph” (without the quotes) in for the Last Name and “William” (without the quotes) in for First Name and press .

This will give you a list of the results that were a match in the database. On this list, click on the “Relph” whose Person ID is “I417” (William Relph, born 27 Jun 1803). You are now at his Individual Page, part of which you see below.

Take a few minutes to orient yourself with the layout. This is the “core” display of the genealogy pages. The standard view shows all of the most pertinent ‘Personal Information’; the other views listed in the brown bar limit information to a specific category. Note that the personal information is divided into three sections — the Individual selected, his/her Parents, and his/her Spouse and Children (if any). Clicking on the “Group Sheet” link next to the appropriate Family ID will bring up either the Parental Family Group sheet (parents and siblings, with the individual as a child) or the Selected Person’s Family Group sheet (spouse and children, with the individual as a parent).

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Event Map

You will also see an event map showing the location of the main events in the life of the individual.

  • Click on the Event Number pin to open the map in a new window. If you are using FireFox, you can right click and open in a new tab rather than a new window. On the map in the separate window, you can get driving directions to or from this location.
  • Click on the Google Earth icon to view using the Google Earth desktop application once you have downloaded and installed the application on your desktop.
  • Use the + (plus) to zoom in on the map and the – (minus) to zoom out, or you can use the slider to control the zoom. If the Google Map server returns a message that no map is available at that zoom level, then you must zoom out in order to get the map to display.
  • You can also click the Hybrid button to view the map as a satellite picture with names.
  • Click the pin number on the map to get the description, date, and location of the event.

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Now let’s look at the 13 tabs next to the “Individual” tab: Family, AncestorsMaternal, Paternal, Parental, Descendants, Relationship, Timeline, Submit FamilySubmit Photo/Doc, GEDCOM, Edit and Suggest.

NOTE: On the Individual, Ancestors and Descendants pages you have the option to create a report in ‘pdf’ format for the information you are viewing. To make use of this option you will need to have installed Adobe Reader in order to view the report. If you don’t already have it, you can download the (free) Adobe Reader software by clicking this link.

The "Family" tab

The “Family” tab gives you

The " Ancestors" tab

The ” Ancestors” tab gives you a dynamic chart of which the default view is the “standard” (4 generations). Note that each generation is shown in a slightly different shade, getting progressively lighter with each older generation. Clicking on any of the names on the chart will take you to the individual sheet for that person.

Notice that there are little arrows  pointing down beneath many of the boxes. If you hover your mouse over the arrow (not click!) a drop-down list for that person will open. You can click on a name in that sheet to take you to their individual sheet. Clicking on any  icon will show the next generation above (ancestors); clicking on the  icon will show the ancestry starting from the next generation below. Wherever you see the pedigree icon , you clan click to show the ancestry from that individual. Also note that in the brown bar just above the chart, you can specify the number of generations you want to display (beware that the page will get increasingly wider and longer, requiring more scrolling, as you increase the number of generations).

In the brown bar there are a number of other Ancestor chart views available by clicking on CompactBoxText, Ahnentafel, or Media. The latter displays both lines of parentage for any individual — and lists that person’s grand-parents, great-grandparents, and so on — as far back as is known, based on the number of generations selected for the display. The  icon that may be shown alongside a name in the Media display means that at least one photo, history, or other media item exists for that individual. The Ahnentafel chart (also known as an ascendants table – See Wikipedia article on Ahnentafel for details.) lists all the generations in tabular form, complete with all children and birth, marriage, death, and burial details if known. Try clicking on each of the Ancestor display options to see what they offer.

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The "Maternal Line" Tab

The “Maternal Line” Tab

The "Paternal Line" Tab

4) The “Paternal Line” Tab

The "Parental Line" Tab

5) The “Parental Line” Tab

The "Descendants" tab

6) The “Descendants” tab gives you a listing of all descendants of this individual.

The default view is the “Text” list, also known as a “descendant drop chart.” Notice that in many places there is a little white box with a minus sign in it. Click this box and that branch of this tree will collapse to this position. Try it! Also, once the descendants are displayed in this text format, you can show a graphic view (with photos) of a specific branch of descendants from that ancestor by clicking the descendant icon  next to the descendant whose chart you wish to display. This chart includes the siblings of each ancestor. Thus, the younger the individual, the greater the number of generations in the chart; and the greater the number of siblings in a family, the wider the chart becomes.

Try clicking on the other types of Descendant charts, listed on the brown bar: Standard – a traditional “tree” with photos (where available), Compact – without photos, and Register – a list of generations in tabular form, similar to Ahnentafel.

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The "Relationships" tab

7) The “Relationships” tab allows you to generate a box chart to show the relationship between this individual and any other person in your tree7

Just click on the “Find” button under “Person 2” and search for “Henry Mills RELPH” (remember, last name on top). Select ‘Henry Mills RELPH’ (ID-I368) and click “Calculate

It is also possible to display the relationship of a default person to the one who’s details are being displayed. The initial Default Person is assigned by the administrator for the Relationship Display which (when active) is located below the name/date on a person’s page. If you are a registered member, just log in and then you will be assigned as the Default Person.

The Default Person can be changed to a different person by clicking ‘Set As Default Person’ in the icon menu on that person’s page. Relationship results between the Default Person and the Current Subject are displayed after calculation. A relationship chart (like that illustrated above) may be viewed by clicking on the ‘Relationship Chart’ link. The relationship display may be turned off by clicking the  icon at the left side of the display. The display can be turned on again by clicking ‘Set As Default Person’ in the icon menu. Also you can click the blue information icon for more help on using this feature.

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The "Timeline" tab

8) The “Timeline” tab allows you to view a list of important (and some not-so-important) events that occurred during his lifetime. Hovering over the timeline with your cursor will reveal that individual’s personal events (birth, marriage, births of children, death).

Timelines for up to four other people can be added to the page to show the timeline relationship between this person and the others.

You can also populate a timeline by finding any 2-4 individuals manually and thereby compare them across the ages. This gives you a unique perspective to see what was going on in the world during the lives of our ancestors.

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The "Submit Family" tab

9) The “Submit Family” tab will take you to “Worksheet” with the individuals basic details already filled in. You can them submit any corrections or addtions for me to evaluate and update the database as appropriate. An example of the form can be seen in the “Editing/Correcting” section below.

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The "Submit Photo/Doc" tab

10) The “Submit Photo/Doc” tab


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The "GEDCOM" tab

11) The “GEDCOM” tab is for generating a GEDCOM file of this family (for importing into genealogy programs or for reading with a gedcom reader). However, this tab will be disabled if you are not a “registered user” or do not have the “permission” to download.[return to top of page] ….. [return to Tabs List]

The "Edit" tab

12) The “Edit” tab


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The "Suggest" tab

13) The “Suggest” tab allows you to suggest any changes or additions and then automatically sends the information to me, so that I can evaluate your suggestion and add it to the database if appropriate. The identity of the individual you are referencing is automatically attached to the message when you make a suggestion using the “Suggest” tab.[return to top of page] ….. [return to Tabs List]

Search and Find

Where the people are … There are three primary ways to get to the records of an individual:

  • Clicking on “Surnames” – this will give you the master listing of surnames in the database and allow you to drill-down by surname, which will give you a list of people to choose from. Click on “show all surnames” to get an alphabetical listing of all surnames in the database.
  • Searching for a name in the database. If you know who you are looking for, then you are already halfway there! Just use the Search box on the right side of the home page (surname on top!), and you will be shown all the records in the database that match your request.  If you need to be more specific in who or what you are looking for, use the “Advanced Search” feature on the home page or by clicking on the search icon  in the upper left hand corner of every page. There, you can specify several different criteria to search against, including birth and death information as well as spousal information. You can even search by event or place.
  • Married Name: To search for a woman when you know only her married name, either
    (a) use the “Spouse’s Last Name” field with Gender set as ‘Female’, which will give you a list of all women married to men with the family name stated, or
    (b) if you also know her first name, click on the “Search Families” link and then you will be able to enter both the husband/partner’s name and her first name.

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As described above, the “Suggest” tab allows you to suggest any changes or additions (corrections, updates, comments), or any other information about a specific individual or family record; it then automatically sends the information to me. I will evaluate your suggestion and add it to the database if appropriate. The identity of the individual or family you are referencing is automatically attached to the message when you send me the suggestion.

You can also submit a Family Group Worksheet, if you have a number of connected people to suggest. The FGW is available from the “More” drop down menu (Submit Family) or here. If you know the person ID of the mother or father you’re submitting, add it to the appropriate field, and the system will copy that person’s known information into the worksheet for you.

As the master copy of my database is kept and maintained ‘offline’ I do not offer the facility for users to directly edit any information. If you wish to tell or ask me something general, rather than related to a specific individual or family, then use the ‘Contact Me‘ link in the ‘Find’ drop-down menu.

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Media/Photos, etc.

Photographs and other media can be linked to individual and family records. I have added some photographs but have more to add to the database. I would very much like to hear from anyone who might be able to provide photos or other media relevant to anyone in the database. Please let me know if you have anything of interest. Thanks.

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Other Features

There is much more functionality on the website, but this walk through should be a good intro to the system. Feel free to poke around; you can’t break it. But if you find anything wrong, or page errors, please let me know so that I can fix it!
If you are a descendant or relative of anyone on this website, then sign-up and then login (use the Login  link on the menu bar) to get the full benefits and to view information on living relatives in your branch of the tree!
There is also a list of Frequently Asked Questions that you may find useful.

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This entire website is made possible by the use of TNG (The Next Generation) software from Darrin Lythgoe. Visit Darrin’s website for more information.
Thanks and appreciation are due to Bob Mueller and Jerry Liebowitz, whose TNG genealogy websites’ Help pages gave me the ideas for creating this page.

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