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I have been using Ancestry for about seven years. When I started I put both my paternal and maternal lines in the same tree. Now, I'm thinking it would be better to have two trees-one for each line. My question- Is there an easy way to do this? Or any suggestions on the least time consuming way to accomplish this task?

Sandra Taliaferro
Atlanta, GA

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Replies to This Discussion


I have both together and it makes it easier since they are inter-related back in Medaevil times. However, if you want to split them, try exporting a partial gedcom that includes: your mother's ancestors for 99 generations; and 5 or more descendant generations for each ancestor. The number of descendant generations would depend on how deep your collateral lines go. You will have to check and perhaps clean up her own descendants depending on how you wish to have them set up.
Do the same for your father.
If you are like me, you probably have some non-relative's lines in your database and this should eliminate them. You should spot check each database against your original to see it you missed anything.
I have done this with some parts of my family but not with someone as major as my father or mother. Good luck.
Others here could very well have better or more accurate methods. At least this is something to start with.
Thanks. I will try your suggestion. I'm thinking two trees will be easier to manage. Maybe once I try this, I'll change my mind.

That may be so but you will have a better idea of what you want.
Thanks, Karen. I have not found a common family member that would connect my trees; I've had some posibilities, but nothing definite. That would be interesting. I am thinking two trees will be easier to work with. But as I said to Carroll, I may find I like one better, but won't know until I try it out....and I'm gonna do that as soon as I figure out how to do what Carroll suggested. It takes a little while for the technical stuff to soak-in. LOL
I'll let y'all know what happens. :)

Sandra, I think it's a huge mistake to split your tree. You may find common ancestors (yes, it happens - frequently!) in both paternal and maternal.

You can still print off a tree for each (pedigree chart, tree etc) by using your father as person #1 in the tree for his lines, and your mother as person #1 for the tree in her lines
Thanks to Lorine, and to all who responded tomy question. I think I will keep one tree, at least for the near future. I especially appreciate Carroll for his suggestion which I will keep for future reference.

Sandra I

I have one main tree that contains both my paternal and maternal lines plus separate trees that I've broken out from there.

One of the subset trees was broken out based on a request (no blood ties that we know of but we share a line in our trees). After I got the intial request, I broke out some of the other lines not for my convience but for various members of my family to make it easier for them to view. For instance, I doubt there is any overlap between my paternal and maternal sides so I created a separate tree for my paternal side for all the relatives on that side to view. That side of my family is small and while there aren't any names the same, didn't want them getting bogged down in the main tree trying to figure their minute portion of it.

Now, I will say that having separate trees is a lot of work. When you update one, you have to update all which are connected, which is why at this point I'm beginning to rethink the whole subset tree approach. I just don't have that much time or the desire to ensure that. Transferring information between trees is simple but it's very time consuming.
Thanks, Mavis. You have given me some additional issues to consider. Right now I think I'm going to leave things as they are. I was also thinking it would be easier for others viewing my tree if I had one for each line. That was my major reason for considering the split. But, all things considered one thing I do not want to do is make more work for myself.
Thanks for asking this question Sandra. I was thinking of breaking my database into two trees also, but this discussion has encouraged me to keep just one main tree.
I'm glad I did too!!



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