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What is the difference between families and marriages?

What is the difference between families and marriages?

Posted: 29 Jan 2013 2:26PM GMT
Classification: Query
I am attempting to migrate between Legacy Family tree and FTM2012. I have already determined that FTM will not read in a Legacy file without corrupting my family relationships. So now I am exporting GEDCOM from Legacy and importing to FTM. Given the corruption issue I am being cautious as to whether the GEDCOM has been imported correctly. During the import FTM reports having imported 1474 Individuals and 413 Families. However, under the "Plan" tab FTM reports 1474 Individuals and 356 marriages, and does not want to tell me about families anymore. How can I get FTM to tell me how many families there are in my tree?

Re: What is the difference between families and marriages?

Posted: 29 Jan 2013 3:29PM GMT
Classification: Query
I suspect Family Tree Maker is reporting the number of Marriage Facts. Can you do that in Legacy to see if the numbers match?

Re: What is the difference between families and marriages?

Posted: 29 Jan 2013 4:26PM GMT
Classification: Query
Edited: 29 Jan 2013 4:28PM GMT
From the help of Legacy on Family, Information.
"Content Information
The content section shows:
The number of individual records in the current Family File.
--->The number of Families (marriages). <-----
The number of unique surnames (just for fun).
The number of Master Source entries."

Legacy Families and FTM Marriages are one and the same.

Also do you have any single parent "Families" included in your data?

Re: What is the difference between families and marriages?

Posted: 30 Jan 2013 10:11PM GMT
Classification: Query
Edited: 31 Jan 2013 2:47PM GMT
In genealogy there is always a biological mother and a biological father, so there can never be a single parent, or two same sex parents.

Genealogy is complicated enough with out further complicating it by forgetting the fathers in a relationship. You can have delinquent fathers but they are still there.

Unknown information does not mean that it does not exist

Re: What is the difference between families and marriages?

Posted: 31 Jan 2013 8:15AM GMT
Classification: Query
After further investigation I suppose I have come to the conclusion that a family is a all dual and single parent/ children groupings and a marriage is the conventional definition. I have quite a few what seem to be single parent families simply because a marriage certificate will name the brides father, which I enter in my tree. Since I do not have the information about the brides mother, it looks like a single parent family.

Re: What is the difference between families and marriages?

Posted: 31 Jan 2013 4:28PM GMT
Classification: Query
Parents of either the bride of groom are not listed on the certificate, unless they are a "Witness" to the marriage.

You need to use some method of entering these unknown parents. There has been many discussions here about the naming of unknown persons.

Re: What is the difference between families and marriages?

Posted: 31 Jan 2013 7:57PM GMT
Classification: Query
Sorry, I do not know what you are referring to but UK (English) marriage certificates from 1837 always give the father of the groom and the bride.

Re: What is the difference between families and marriages?

Posted: 31 Jan 2013 8:22PM GMT
Classification: Query
Edited: 31 Jan 2013 9:52PM GMT
From a GEDCOM point of view and therefore many programs, a FAMily is a record that connects male and female "spouses" with children. While marriage is a TAG/Field in the record it is NOT required.

Children can be attached to the FAMily record via a FAMC tag associated with the INDIvidual and a subtag called PEDIgree that can denote the child is a (adopted | birth | foster | sealing) connection to the FAMily. NOTE: FTM does not support this specific GEDCOM construct but does track the information. (EDIT: The FAMily is also attached to the INDIviduals as well, The connection is bi-directional.)

Spouses of a family are connected to the FAMily record via a FAMS tag.

So FAMily and Marriage are connected and could be the same but individuals are connected to a FAMily record without the requirement of marriage so depending on how the counts are made they could be the same or different.

In GEDCOM a Male and/or Female "spouse" is not required to "head" a family. And while the GEDCOM allows for only one of each (male and female) this is not a requirement of many software programs, nor is it a requirement that anything except one person (be it spouse or child) be associated with a FAMily record. So it is possible to have a child without parents, or parent(s) without children, or child(ren) without parents.

Personally I have a few "spouses" without children, "spouses" without marriage (with and without children), cand cases where children have no know parents.

Many software programs tend to LUMP concepts together because it gets real hard to differentiate between the concepts "in the wild". Some people call themselves "married" but no documents are on the books. If you frequent genealogy blogs you will see many discussions about what constitues a family, what is a "common law marriage", how to record various family (and non family) relationships. Some people only record true blood relationships, other only record the male or female lines, other do something very different.

Sorry for the long winded answer. Your titled question is not easy to answer with the bigger picture in mind.

Re: What is the difference between families and marriages?

Posted: 31 Jan 2013 9:02PM GMT
Classification: Query
My misunderstanding, I am in the US and the certificates are certainly different.

Then you need to add a "Unknown" mother of the bride.
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