How do you record a census?

When recording a census record, how do you get the information into the children’s records? I tried to share but when I go pick the child it brings up a block to pick either Witness or Add another role type. Not sure what to call another role type.

For this situation for a census event, I enter the event as "Census (fam).

For the new roles, I list them as how they are listed on the Census in correlation to the Head of Household." For example: Son, daughter, boarder, niece, servant, etc. Each role has the same sentencing for the narrative report, but a different role so I can see easily where they were in relation to others.

Hope this helps.

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Many users define for roles for the Census fact such as Wife, Son, Daughter, Boarder, or other such things that appear in U.S. census entries. They are not pre-defined for you, but they are pretty easy to define in the Fact List. You do have to define both the name of the Role and a sentence for the Role.

For example, you can make a sentence for the Son role that reads something like John Doe was enumerated in the 1850 census in Anderson County, Tennessee as the son of the head-of-household William Doe. The actual template would be something like [ThisPerson] was enumerated in the [Date:Year] census in [Place] as the son of the head-of-household [Person]. I have not tested this template for any kind of perfection, but rather it should give you a general idea of the kinds of things you can do.

I’m probably unusual in that I don’t use RM’s Shared Fact facility for census data. Instead, I hand enter the Census fact for each individual. It’s a little more work but it allows me to make my reports look the way I want them to look and it makes it likely that my census data will survive being transferred to genealogy software outside of RM. I bet that a very large percentage of RM users who enter census data to use RM’s Shared Fact feature.

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By the way, you have to do the work to define the roles for the Census fact only once. Having done so, the template will apply to everybody in your database for whom you share the Census fact.

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I don’t use the Census (fam) event, as it doesn’t export properly to some other FH applications.
I add the census event to the head of the household, add the source details, and then copy the event individually to each member of the household, using the “re-use” option for the citation


I didn’t mention it, but even though I enter each census fact by hand without any sharing of facts, I obviously do Memorize and Paste/Reuse the citation for each member of the family.


I am trying to create this sentence:
[Date] Census [ThisPerson] was [placedetails] [place] as [role] of [person]

Is there a template term [role] ?
If not is it possible to create?

Meantime, I have eventually worked out I can use:

Command Palette/Fact Types/Edit/Edit Role

to copy & adapt the witness sentence for each relationship we can add.

Learning all the time where to find things in the new menus!

No, there is not a template variable called [Role].

I wish such a variable existed. Wishing for such a variable seems like a common request, but you can actually get by without it.

For example, suppose you have three roles for the marriage fact such as Best Man, Maid of Honor, and Groomsman. And maybe you want a role sentence something like the following:

[ThisPerson] served as the [Role] at the wedding of [Couple] [Date] [Place].

I’m just letting RM fill in the prepositions for me in things like [Date] and [Place] and I’m not worrying about the angle brackets I probably should be using around some of the variables.

If the [Role] variable existed, you still would have to create all three roles and would still have to create a sentence for all three roles. It’s just that the sentence for all three roles could be identical because of the handy [Role] variable.

But because the [Role] variable doesn’t exist, the three separate role sentences would have to be different, viz.

Best man sentence:
[ThisPerson] served as the Best Man at the wedding of [Couple] [Date] [Place].

Maid of honor sentence:
[ThisPerson] served as the Maid of Honor at the wedding of [Couple] [Date] [Place].

Groomsman sentence:
[ThisPerson] served as the Groomsman at the wedding of [Couple] [Date] [Place].

An English teacher can advise you better than me on the capitalization rules for terms such as Best Man, etc.



What do the < and > do either side of [fact] ?
I have been using just the brackets and cannot see the difference.

I tried typing the angle brackets into my previous note, but software for this forum seemed to swallow them so I deleted that part of my note. The angle brackets have to do with what happens if the data for a variable such as [Date] or [Place] or [Place Details] is missing.

The basic thing that happens is that if data is missing for a variable, then nothing prints for the variable. If that’s all you need, then you don’t need the angle brackets. But sometimes you need some additional text for a variable. The additional text might be something so simple as a comma and and extra space, or it might be more extensive than that. In any case, if you put angle brackets around some text that includes a variable and if the data for the variable is missing, then all of the text inside the angle brackets is not printed. It’s not just that the variable itself is not printed.

Let me see if can get the forum software to let me use angle brackets this time. In the example below, maybe I want to insert my own comma after the [Date] variable, but if the [Date] value is missing I want nothing to print for the date, not even the comma. The example below shows how to do it. But remember it’s not just spaces and commas. It’s any text at all that meets you needs can be inside the angle brackets and the text will not print if the variable itself doesn’t have any value.

<[Date], >
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I beg to differ @thejerrybryan there is [Role] variable and it does exist. Check the Sentence Template Language in the Wiki. It is in the Fact Sentence Fields section of the page.
@marshtown this page also details how to use the /< /> brackets under the Simple Switches section

[Date] Census [ThisPerson] was [placedetails] [place] as [role] of [person]

Above works fine on a shared census(family) entry from father to daughter except for leaving in “[role]” and not replacing it with daughter. So that’s where using < > would at least mean it would not appear because there was no usable value for it.

The Wiki Sentence Template Language chart linked to by @Chris requires role to be specified rather than pick up its content from the nature of the relationship:

“[Role] 1 or more person
All witnesses to the event with the specified role.
The name of the role is typed in square brackets, e.g. [Witness], [Doctor], [Minister]”

That Wiki page shows how complex the sentence writing system is already. If it was possible to use the term role in the way I tried, perhaps they would have done it. So I think the answer to my request is NO! But I have learnt the work around and lots more. Thanks.

Correct-amundo !!!
I just double-checked, and the [Role] field is available in RM7, even though I can’t remember ever using it.
Good info !!!

Sorry, the [Role] variable does not exist in RM7. I think you are talking about something different. For example, consider my Wedding example. You can set up a sentence something like the following (highly oversimplified).

[Couple] was married [Date][PlaceDetails][Place]. Their groomsmen were [Groomsman]. Their best man was [BestMan].

In fact, in the case of the [Groomsman] variable, if there were multiple groomsmen, it would list them all with just one variable. The words “groomsman” and “best man” are hardwired in this sentence. They have to be. If you tried to say [Role] at this point, RM would have no way of knowing which role you meant.

There is something that’s tricky to understand about the sentences used with RM’s shared facts. Namely, when you share a fact there is at least the possibility that the sharing can influence two separate sentences.

First of all, the sharing can influence the original sentence for the original fact for the original person. That’s the example I gave above where [Groomsman] and [BestMan] have become variables for the original marriage sentence for the original couple.

Second of all, you define a sentence for the person with whom a fact is to be shared. These are the sentences I described above such as

[ThisPerson] served as the Groomsman at the wedding of [Couple] [Date] [Place].

In this case, you use [ThisPerson] rather than [Groomsman] to define the person in the sentence. This is the place where the [Role] variable would make sense to replace the hardwired word “Groomsman”. But it’s not really necessary.

Notice that my sample role sentence used the variables [ThisPerson] and [Couple]. I used [Couple] because it was a couple fact such as marriage. But you can also share individual facts. For example, you might share the birth fact with the person who attended the birth as the midwife. In that case, role fact would usually use the variables [ThisPerson] and [Person].

For example, the sentences for Birth and Midwife might be set up something like the following.

Birth sentence:
[Person] was born [Date][Place].< [Midwife] attended the birth as the midwife.>

Midwife sentence:
[ThisPerson] was the midwife who attended the birth of [Person] [Date][Place].

Again, notice that the midwife is referred to as [Midwife] in the Birth sentence but as [ThisPerson] in the Midwife sentence. The word “midwife” has to be hardwired in the Midwife sentence because there is no [Role] variable.

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Screencap from RM7

There is no [Role] variable that’s spelled literally R o l e. That is what the Help File says, but it doesn’t mean you type in [Role]. It means you type in [Witness] or [Doctor] or [Minister]. Such roles can certainly be used in the sentence for the original fact.

Where you you would like actually to type in [Role] - not [Witness] or [Doctor] or [Minister], just the literal [Role] - in the role sentence itself. To use the [Minister] example, the marriage sentence might be something like the following

[Couple] was married [Date][Place]. [Minister] officiated the wedding. (or [Minister] served as minister at the wedding)

The [Minister] variable works just fine in the Marriage sentence, but it’s the [Minister] variable, not the [Role] variable.

The Minister sentence then might be something like

[ThisPerson] officiated at the wedding of [Couple][Date][Place].

Except that you might instead like a sentence like the following.

[ThisPerson] served as minister at the wedding of [Couple][Date][Place]. And that’s where you might wish to have an actual, literal [Role] variable, viz.

[ThisPerson] served as [Role] at the wedding of [Couple][Date][Place]. And since this is the sentence for the Minister role, the sentence could appear as

Rev. Bill Smith served as the minister at the wedding of John Doe and Jane Williams on 3 Jan 1920 in Washington, D.C.

But there is no literal [Role] variable, so the sentence for the [Minister] role has to hardwire the word “minister” or it has to hardware “officated at” or whatever you want it to say.