How I use FamilySearch Source Box for my One-Name Study


This may seem over-simplistic but I use the Family Search Source Box folders as one tool to organize my one-name-study.

When one does the main bulk of all their online searches and data collecting in the Family Search Historical Collections[i], it seems to be a no-brainer to me to utilize the setting in my Family Search account to make it work for my own purposes.

In doing a one-name study, we are not traveling down the lines of a pedigree or filling in a fan chart. Although some one-namers do eventually reconstitute families or even families that connect to their own family, we are collecting for a surname study which requires intense variations of organization.

Last summer, I had many revelations while a student at the Intro to One Name Study course run by Helen Osborne at Pharos Tutors [ii] . One of the texts we studied was the Seven Pillars of Wisdom - The Art of One-Name Studies[iii] [iv]  To quote literally from the manual, it dictates that ‘it is impossible to prescribe the "right" way to carry out a One-Name Study’ so the bottom line was to use, with confidence, what tools that work for you.

Among my tools, for a small one –name study, is the utilization of the Source Box.

First, one needs to have an account at Family Search. Secondly, you go to your profile name and left-click to Source Box.[v] There is a section called MY FOLDERS. It could not be easier. One limitation is that you are only allowed up to 50 folders and there are no sub-folders. As I have a small study that spreads internationally, I decided to label them by localities.

I also created a folder where I save deviant surname variations (no doubt, due to indexers’ transcriptions, where I need to do further research) called Deviants. I have another folder called Family Tree for future attachment to Family Trees when I have identified a family group. Since Family Search Tree added the ADD UNCONNECTED PERSON option, whenever I reconstituted a definite unrelated family in one location with documentations for my one-name study, I add them through this option with sources from my source box.

This is not the only way I save my sources for my one-name study but it just makes sense to use this Source Box approach for organizing my sources right where I basically search for them.