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How do you handle entering unknown surnames?

How do you handle entering unknown surnames?

Posted: 22 Apr 2012 6:52PM GMT
Classification: Query
Currently, my unknown surnames have "?" but that is starting to get on my nerves!

Are there better alternatives? Do any of you just put first name and leave surname blank? Although by leaving it blank, it seems FTM sorts their first name under surname...

Re: How do you handle entering unknown surnames?

Posted: 22 Apr 2012 7:36PM GMT
Classification: Query
I use 5 underscores for an unknown name, given or surname. It works for me, doesn't seem to interfere with the search algorithm, and looks clean.

Re: How do you handle entering unknown surnames?

Posted: 22 Apr 2012 7:58PM GMT
Classification: Query
"Although by leaving it blank, it seems FTM sorts their first name under surname.."

A little hint I discovered.........
In the Editing panel, click on the Name blank. You will see a pencil on the right.......clicking on it will bring up an editing box where you can correct that problem. FTM will then remember the changes.

Re: How do you handle entering unknown surnames?

Posted: 22 Apr 2012 8:07PM GMT
Classification: Query
That is brilliant, lormik! Although how do I correct it once I get to the pencil editing box? I tried deleting the "?" I had for surname, leaving it blank, and saving, but the person still gets sorted by first name...

Re: How do you handle entering unknown surnames?

Posted: 22 Apr 2012 8:08PM GMT
Classification: Query
I may have to try that if I can't figure out the below poster's "trick." Thanks for the suggestion, Kelly.

Re: How do you handle entering unknown surnames?

Posted: 22 Apr 2012 8:22PM GMT
Classification: Query
The easiest for me:

Male Unknown
Female Unknown
John Unknown
Jane Unknown
Male Obama
Female Obama

Some use LNU and FNU.

Re: How do you handle entering unknown surnames?

Posted: 22 Apr 2012 9:22PM GMT
Classification: Query
Edited: 22 Apr 2012 9:24PM GMT
I always use the word Unknown if I do not know the surname or given name, or in some cases both.

Unknown Smith
John Unknown
Unknown Unknown

Re: How do you handle entering unknown surnames?

Posted: 22 Apr 2012 9:38PM GMT
Classification: Query
Edited: 22 Apr 2012 9:39PM GMT
This is what works for me

Aaron (W:Christina James) = I know the wife's name and his first name

David (M: Christina James) = I know the mother's name but not the surname of the father

Pearl (W: John) Anderson = I know who she married, but not her maiden name.

This way, when I find the information, I can easily match it with the person I'm looking for!

Re: How do you handle entering unknown surnames?

Posted: 22 Apr 2012 9:40PM GMT
Classification: Query
That's exactly how I do mine too. I couldn't figure the "pencil" trick on my version of FTM (2006). I also make sure I fill in all the other areas (born, date, place, etc) with unknown. Otherwise FTM2006 thinks the person is living and that can distort reports.

Re: How do you handle entering unknown surnames?

Posted: 22 Apr 2012 9:45PM GMT
Classification: Query
I also use underscores but use 8. It gives a little more room on a report to addin the correct name.

Mary ________
________ Jones
________ ________

There is *minor* bug in using blank, underscores or ?, etc. in the surname. A middle initial of I gets interpreted as a suffix (1st) Jane I ______ becomes Jane _____ I. This happens unless the first character of the surname is alpha, or you add more characters to the middle name, I() "I", I?, Irene, etc.

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