Saturday, March 22, 2014

SNGF: Surname Counts

This week's Saturday Night Genealogy Fun challenge from Randy Seaver asks us to figure out how to count the number of people with each surname in our genealogy management program and report on our findings.

I use Family TreeMaker (FTM) as my genealogy management program. Unfortunately, I don't have all of my families in a single FTM database. I maintain 3 separate files: my mother's lines; my father's lines; my husband's lines. Since I started using genealogy programs many, many years ago, I had to split my files to be able to back them up onto floppy disks and because, in the early days, the programs just couldn't handle very many names, dates, places, etc.

I upgraded to FTM 2014 last Christmas (thank you, Sara!), but still had two of my main files in FTM 2009. 2009 apparently doesn't have the capability of counting surnames, so I had to import those two files into FTM 2014 for this task.

In FTM2014, select PUBLISH; then PERSON REPORTS; then SURNAME REPORT. Select to include all individuals and to sort by count. To find alternate spellings, I also sorted alphabetically.

BROOKSHIRE = 777 individuals (+69 with variant spellings), 1680-1994
SWICEGOOD = 268 individuals (+21 with variant spellings), 1600-1995
SHARP = 174 individuals (+28 with variant spellings), 1655-1985
WOOLERY = 177 individuals, 1739-1919
RYASON/RYERSON/REYERSE = 164 individuals, 1664-1893
SOMMARSTROM = 156 individuals, 1778-1988

Numbers 1, 2 and 4 are from my mother's side; #3 and 5 are from my father's side; #6 is my husband's line. Because his line is Swedish/Finnish, the surname Sommarström wasn't established until the late 1770s. Before that the family used patronymics, changing the surname each generation.

One of these days I need to combine my three main files, but I keep thinking I should get them all cleaned up first. Somehow that just hasn't happened.

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