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ODTs Help

Outlines of descendants of specific individuals, ancestors or cousins

Author: R. A. Davis
Date: May 2007

The ODT section presents a separate page for each family, with an index page to help locate all the subordinate pages. Each family page contains one or more subfamilies, which all bear the same surname, but may or may not be related to each other.

An older page, Outline Descendant Tree (ODT): Report Format, although wanting updating, remains largely valid.

The Index PageUp arrow Down arrow

Ancestral families
Ancestral families are listed in the index in boldface and all upper case. (e.g. ALCOCK) Other families are listed in normal font and mixed case. (e.g. Adams)
Ancestry views
These links from the ODT index page TOC will show my total ancestry pedigree. Two choices of presentation:
  1. Ahnentafeljump to form. (One very large page.)
  2. Tree form (a/k/a pedigree form) on WorldConnect
Data arrangement
The names of all the families are laid out alphabetically, with an AlphaNavBar attached to the bottom* *Added:
Jul 2010
of the window. Click on a name to go to the ODTs for that family. Click a letter on an AlphaNavBar to jump to the part of the table with names beginning with that letter.
Name popup
Hovering over a name will pop up 1) the 3- or 4-letter prefix used in forming the reference numbers for that family, 2) the count of subfamilies, 3) the range of dates represented in that family, and 4) a list of recognized spellings of the name.
Summary statistics
Placed at the bottom of the index page, below the table of families, this is a summary of statistics about my genealogy. There is also a small table, Champion cross-pollenators: pairs of families with the most inter-marriages -- i.e. the most-connected families.
Update History
Broken down by date, the names of family files* *Added:
added or changed.

The ODT pagesUp arrow Down arrow

The key is: These are outlines. The initial numbers on each line (and the indentation) indicate the generation* *Added:
Sep 2010
by a prefix letter, e.g. A1, C4. The numeric part numbers the individuals within each family group; The letter designates the generation w/r/t the base individual at the top of the sub-family.

TitleUp arrow Down arrow

The title for the page includes the base surname and the range of dates found in that family.

Table of ContentsUp arrow Down arrow

reduced image of an ODT table of contents
The ODT table of contents has some complexity, so is described here. Its elements are:
  • Summary: The family is named, the population stated, and identified as ancestral or collateral.
  1. Outline Descent Trees
    • The subfamilies are listed and numbered.
    • The population and date range is stated
    • The title of the subfamily, naming the focus individual or spouse thereof. The name is a link to that subfamily ODT. If the subfamily is recently new or changed, this will be flagged (change flag). The name portion will be set in boldface* *Added:
      Feb 2009
    • The relationship of the focus individual to myself. If the relationship is that of an ancestor, this will be flagged (*).
    • Pedigree for the focus individual
    • Subfamilies are grouped by commonality of ancestry, as indicated by the dashed lines. Subfamilies within the same group descend from the same ancestor -- i.e. the rightmost individual in the pedigrees.
    • Presentation order: Subfamilies are presented in alphabetical order as determined by the names of the pedigree taken in right-to-left order.
  2. Inter-family Links Summaryjump to

    The text of this link has a pop-up tooltip that lists the families on this page which are likely also my families, but which have not yet been connected to this one. If the number of instances is more than one, the count is appended in parentheses. For each family in the list that also has an instance of an unrealized connection to this family an asterisk †Added:
    Jan 2008
    is appended.
    (... BENE(4)* ... This page has 4 unconnected references to the Benedict family, which has at least one unconnected reference to this one.)

  3. Surname Inventoryjump to
  4. Services

SubfamilyUp arrow Down arrow

reduced image of beginning of a subfamily Each ODT page consists of one or more subfamilies. A subfamily is a collection of descendants of a single individual who may or may not be related to other subfamilies on the page.

The layout:

  • Navigation aidsjump to
  • Relationshipjump to
  • Subfamily titlejump to
  • Subfamily pedigreejump to
  • Upload date and time
  • Subfamily namejump to
  • Subfamily locationjump to (the green box)
  • Subfamily ODT

    In addition, there is an invisible strip* *Added:
    Jan 2008
    down the left edge of each subfamily division. Hovering your mouse cursor over this strip will pop up the subfamily name. The invisible strip is about 3mm wide.

    Navigation aids
    1. Numbers the subfamily
    2. Link to the top of the page
    3. Link to the previous subfamily
    4. Link to the next subfamily
    5. Link to the summary of inter-family marriagesjump to

    If the subfamily is recently new or changed, a change flag (change flag) will be appended here.

    Relationship* *Added:
    Apr 2007
    The relationship of the focus individual (at the head of the ODT) to myself is presented in red to the right of the navigation aids. FAQ 13 explains the notation.
    The title for each subfamily takes the form:
    nnn Descendants of name [dates].
    The name may be the head of this subfamily or a spouse of same. The birth and death dates* *Added:
    Feb 2009
    of the focus individual are appended to the title.
    e.g. John4,3,2 Collins, 2Thomas1
    This represents the pedigree from the focus individual (the first named) of the present subfamily in a common notation.
    • Surnames are underscored and carry to the right.
    • Superscripts represent the generations removed from the immigrant, who is numbered "1". Generations ancestral to the immigrant are numbered alphabetically, "a", "b", etc.
    • If the immigrant is unknown, or does not appear in the pedigree, superscripts are not used.
    • If the same given name appears in successive generations, this will be indicated by multiple superscripts attached to that name.
    • The final name (on the right) will have a subscript number prefixed. This indicates uniqueness; that is, individuals in different pedigrees (if more than one subfamily) who are the same person will have the same prefix subscript.
    If the pedigree is more than a single individual, it will be an Easter egg link* *Added:
    to the Annex, showing that same pedigree. Annex data may be more complete than shown on the ODT pages.
    This is the unique name for the present subfamily. The first part names the family, and the second part (if needed) is used to make a unique name. (This is actually the name for the associated .prn file on my PC.)
    the green box

    The green box locates the present subfamily within my entire pedigree. It sketches the progression of families from my own, through my ancestral families, to the subject family. The box is divided into two sections, upper and lower.

    Upper part
    Ancestral trace. The upper row sketches my pedigree from myself to the target family, or to a common family ancestral to both myself and the target family.
    • The pedigree is to be read left to right.
    • The pedigree is in the form of a list of families beginning with my own (DAVIS).
    • Each family name is a link to the subfamily ODT for that name.
    • Each family name has superscripts identifying the generation numbers (in the pedigree) of individuals from that family.
    • The superscripts number the generations from left to right.* *Added:
    • The superscripts are links to the individuals at those points in the pedigree.
    Lower part
    Collateral trace If the subfamily is an ancestral one, this row will be empty. Otherwise, the row will contain a list of family names representing the pedigree from the target family (which is presented on a white background) to the same common ancestral family identified in the upper row. Each family name is a link to that subfamily.

    The green box can be used as a handy visual header for each subfamily. The ODT for this subfamily begins just below the green box.

  • SummariesUp arrow Down arrow

    These list individuals from this page in several groups, collected at the bottom of the page.* *Added:
    Mar 2008
    Individuals in these lists are keyed (linked) to their locations in the ODTs by sequence numbers: [subfamily:seq].

    Ancestors and Immigrants
    Individuals who are ancestors (of myself) or immigrants (or both).
    Inter-family Links
    Summarizes links (marriages and the like) between individuals of this family with individuals of other families,
    Persons of Note
    Individuals mentioned in my Celebrities et Cetera collection. Relationships* *Added:
    Jun 2013
    to myself are included.
    Principal Sources* *Added:
    Mar 2011
    The principal sources used in gathering the data in this ODT are briefly listed in order of relevance, most relevant first (relevance being denoted by numbers of citations to that work). Each source includes a link back to a more detailed listing in my Sources page for this family.
    Surname inventory* *Added:
    Nov 2006
    This section of the ODT page is an accounting of every surname used thereon. If a surname appears more than once, the count is included. Surname variations are lumped into one. Surnames with above average counts are flagged as frequent fliers. Surnames that are part of my family -- i.e. have ODT pages -- are links* *Added:
    Apr 2009
    to those ODT pages.

    Other partsUp arrow Down arrow

    Aliases Example of a name with an alias.
    People with name aliases* *Added:
    Sept 2007
    are indicated by a thin blue dashed underline. Mouse-over will pop up the alias. Note that the alias surname is delimited by slashes (//). Further note that sometimes you will find an alias with surname /Z/. These are to help me locate the heads of families for certain reports.

    Some aliases are included in the name itself, as CLINTON alias FIENNES or POLIGNAC later GRIMALDI, the latter example indicating a permanent name change.

    Special annotation* *Added:
    Jan 2011
    Attention may be drawn to certain individuals by marking them with a special numeric font, such as this (❶). The significance of such annotation will usually be made in a special notejump to.
    Noted people are marked by placing their name on a colored background, like this:
    ROOSEVELT, Anna Eleanor, author, diplomat
    The background color is the same as that of the CELEBS collection, and the name is a link to there.
    Change flags ()* *Added:
    Sep 2010
    Mouse over these for detailed date information, telling when the flagged item was added or changed.
    Data arrangement
    A1. focus person
     B1. son
     B2. second son
      C1. grandson
       D1. GGSon
      C2. grandson
     B3. third son
      C1. grandson
      C2. grandson
    An ODT is an outline.
    The data for each ODT subfamilyjump to are laid out as an outline, i.e. depth-first. Each person is immediately followed by the descendants of that person before going on to his/her siblings.

    These are the salient characteristics of each data entry, which may be split across several physical lines.

    • An asterisk (*) in the left margin identifies ancestors. A hollow bullet (o) here marks individuals who may belong to another of my families. I use these marks to help spot potential links to other families.
    • The initial numbers are the generation numbers for those individuals. Individuals in each family are numbered* *Changed:
      Dec 2009
      (1. 2. 3., etc.). Second (and subsequent) spouses reset the numbering for their offspring.

      The generations are indented, as is common for an outline and prefixed* *Added:
      Sep 2010
      by letters indicating the generation, e.g. A, B, C.

      A color coding has been added to aid in locating family members.* *Added:
      Dec 2010

    • A plus sign (+) in place of a number indicates a spouse of a preceding person.
    • A number in brackets, [2], before the name identifies an individual that either 1) appears more than once through intermarriage, or 2) has more than one spouse (or partner). The number is a link to the next instance or spouse, where the same bracketed number will link to the next instance. These numbers form a ring, i.e. the last one brings you back to the first.
    • Name. [title] Surname, given names[, suffixes] Surnames are always capitalized.
    • b. (born) date place
    • d. (died) date place
    • #: ID identifier. Unique across the site.
    • m. (married) date place (for spouse only)
      Note: Where specific dates are unknown, the items b., d. and m. may be replaced by related abbreviations, such as bp., d.um. mc., as shown in the general document Abbreviations and Acronyms.
    • Mother: (identified for spouses only)
    • Father: (identified for spouses only)
    • The meta-data tags for birth, death and married may be replaced by other common abbreviations as outlined in FAQ#7.
    • The meta-data tags for birth, death, etc. are set in an italicized serif font.
    Dates* *Added:
    May 2010
    All dates are presented in this format: (de mmm yyyy), e.g. (09 Jan 2000). This form combines brevity with unambiguity.
    In cases where actual dates are unknown it is useful to bound the possibilities by supplying an estimated date. Careful estimated date ranges can facilitate future researches. Ranges are usually compiled from other known facts, such as the dates for burial (death will usually have preceded this date), baptism (which customarily shortly follows birth) or other known dates. A bounded range (from-to) is preferred to an unbounded range (e.g. Bef. 1999) because of the unbounded nature of the latter. A death date estimated as "Aft. 1800" is technically bounded on the upper end by today's date, but the true date is likely much earlier than that!
    Range (e.g. yyyy-yyyy)
    After, Before, About
    Symbol Meaning Other
    Before this Bef.
    After this Aft.
    About, circa Abt., ca.
    Double Dates (e.g. 1543/44)
    These estimates indicate that the event occurred during the period when two different calendars (Julian and Gregorian) were in simultaneous use. The first year is the Julian, or Old Style (O.S.), year, and the second is the Gregorian, or New Style (N.S.) year, For a reasonable explanation of double dates, see " Double Dates".

    These are estimates because the format does not account for the difference in days between the two calendars.

    Other forms

    Other special death date forms include the following, which are useful when exact dates are unknown:
  • Child
  • Dead
  • Deceased
  • Infant
  • Stillborn
  • Duplicated individuals example
    There are occasions when the same individual may appear more than once in an ODT. For example, when cousins marry, each partner appears in their respective place in the outline as dictated by parentage, and each appears as the spouse of their partner.

    In a manner similar to that for multiple spouses,jump to the two appearances of each partner are connected by a unique number in [square] brackets.

    ID Identifier
    This is a unique identifier for an individual across the entire site. It consists of an alphabetic prefix of 3 or 4 letters associated with a family followed by a numeric: DMIL13

    If the individual belongs to a different family, representing an intermarriage (or other dalliance), the reference number will be rendered in the right margin, with an arrow () standing in its place in the text. The identifier in the margin will be a link to that individual on his/her proper family ODT page.

    The indexjump to to the these pages may be had by clicking the appropriate link on the Indices: line at the top of any page.
    Mistresses, etc
    Mistresses and other non-marital associations are indicated by a marriage date of Not Married.

    Note: The supplemental identifier lines identify them as Wife of or Husband of even though that designation is somewhat approximate.

    Multiple spouses
    Second and further spouses are introduced by the special informational line as shown in the illustration at the right. Besides the text, they are connected to their spouses (and each other) by a unique number in [square] brackets. If a particular person has three spouses (say), that person and the second and third spouses will all have the same identifying number in brackets. (The first spouse is easily identified by placement next after the relevant family member.) As shown by the selecting cursor in the image, these identifying numbers are all links to each other. That is, each one links to the next and the last links back to the first.
    Notes are distinguished by having styling like this element, and may be placed:
    • before all the subfamilies -- pertaining to the whole family
    • at the top of a particular subfamily -- pertaining to that subfamily only
    • among the individuals of the ODT -- pertaining to a particular individual or group of descendants.
    Page layout
    ODT pages are laid out in several sections:
    1. The ODTsjump to, one for each subfamilyjump to.
    2. Summariesjump to
    (Easter egg) The generation initial* *Changed:
    Dec 2009

    letter/number †Changed:
    Sep 2010
    of each individual is a link to his/her parent.
    Places* *Added:
    May 2010
    Places in the US and Canada are generally represented as locality, county, state. The state (or Province) is abbreviated using the common postal abbreviations, as listed here. Also listed there are the common UK abbreviations.
    Dates and places are suppressed for individuals who are suspected to be living.
    Spacer lines
    Spacer lines A blank line will be inserted between individuals when the generation number changes. The tends to chunk the data into comprehensible bits. This is further enhanced by providing these separator lines with a special background †Added:
    Sep 2010

    These spacer lines are numbered* *Added:
    Jan 2008
    on the right, these being the sequence numbers of the next following individual. These numbers admit easier correlation of online and printed reports.

    The Ahnentafel PageUp arrow Down arrow

    reduced image of a portion of the Ahnentafel
    The Ahnentafel is one of those odd pages, outside the normal structure. Each row of the table (Ahnentafel means "ancestor table" in German), representing one individual in my ancestry, has these columns, left-to-right:
    1. Backward navigationjump to
    2. Forward navigationjump to
    3. Ahnentafel numberjump to
    4. Relationshipjump to
    5. Identifierjump to
    6. Namejump to

    At the end of the table are some notes. The Ahnentafel is linked from the ODT index page.

    "<" (backward navigation to child)
    Click here to find the child of this parent corresponding to this position in the structure. The same parents may have produced more than one child in my ancestry, in which case, each place where that parent appears will lead back to a different child via this link.
    ">" (forward navigation to parent)
    Click this link to find the parent(s) of this person. If no parents are listed, or if this is a duplicate branch, this symbol will be null. Otherwise, the link will bring you to the father of this person. The mother, if listed, will be the next higher numbered person (i.e. N+1).
    Ahnentafel number
    This is the Ahnentafel number for this position in the tree.
    Relationship to base
    This shows the relationship to the individual at the root of the tree, i.e. who has Ahnentafel #1, i.e. me. Abbreviations used:
    • Fa - father
    • Mo - mother
    • G - grand
    • GG - great grand
    • # - number of "great" repetitions, e.g. "3G" = "great, great, great"

    If your browser supports it, hovering the mouse cursor over this field will reward you with a display of the path vector from the root to this point in the tree. The Fs and Ms in this string represent the words "father" and "mother", respectively. For example, the string FFM represents "father's father's mother". For readability, spaces are inserted in the string at every fifth place. Note that this is the path vector to a place in the tree, not to an individual. If an individual appears in more than one place in the tree, each of those places will have its own unique path vector.

    The unique identifier for this individual. This is also a link to that individual in the ODT for this family.
    The full name of this individual, with the surname highlighted. If this is the root of a branch duplicated earlier, the name will be replaced by a link to that earlier branch.

    Other Help PagesUp arrow Down arrow


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