Should we use abreviations for state names?

+16 votes
When I do research on my Swedish relatives I am aware that Swedish counties each have a one or two letter abreviation.  If I were to see BD I would have to look up that BD refers to Norrbotten län.  If I were living in Sweden and looking at WikiTree and saw that someone lived in MO, I might also have to look this up.  Should we make an effort to replace state abreviations by the full name?  Is MO Montana or Missouri?
in Policy and Style by Norm Lindquist G2G6 Mach 5 (58.2k points)
Who ever edits  might replace CT with Connecticut where appropriate.
Norm as non Swedish person but excellent on Swedish Genealogy it would be nice to get some input from you regarding

1) What kind of information you would like to see on a parish category page to help you do better research

2) How we should explain the different links we have....

3) How we should categorize them to make it easier for other prople nit used to what Arkiv Digital, Bygdeband, Sofi is...

2 Answers

+18 votes
Best answer

That is a great question, Norm.

Our guidelines for Location Fields state: "Use the full, written out place name for counties, states, provinces, départements, etc. Examples: Rhode Island, not RI; New Brunswick, not NB; Hampshire, not Hants; Seine-et-Marne, not S-M. Abbreviations of country names is acceptable as long as the abbreviation is standard and is recognizable."

So, we should be using the full name for places.

And, in the US, MO is usually Missouri.  Montana is MT.  If you see confusing abbreviations, I see nothing wrong with fixing them.

by Vic Watt G2G6 Pilot (331k points)
selected by Jacqueline Clark
And MI is not Mississippi.  It is Michigan.  Definitely, please spell out the name of the state and include the county or parish if available.  Thank you!
Abbreviations are a wonderful way to obfuscate -- and probably even to propagate misinformation.

CA could mean California or Canada or a place in Italy (I forget what it stands for in Italy).

WA can be Washington or Western Australia.

And recently I ran across LND, with no country information for a clue. I figured out its meaning based on other information in the profile. What's your guess on what it stands for?

Hint: It's a major world city -- a place that you've heard of.


or Lander, Wyoming  smiley

In Alabama some people go to L.A. on weekends.  Which is their abbreviation for Lower Alabama, which means the North Florida panhandle beaches.  Which is otherwise known as the Redneck Reviera! :D (I'm allowed to use the term redneck because I was born in the south, if you're not born in the south, don't dare use this word. that's just a friendly health warning!)
+1 vote

Sweden project is now running in maybe the wrong direction regarding category names or?!?!?

I can see the logic but we get enormous long names and you easy get spelling errors... 


Kungsbacka (N) is used 

Parish Name is Kungsbacka
N is an county abbreviation genealogy people i Sweden understand

My suggestion is that we add a hatnote at the top of a category to explain the category better

Kungsbacka (N) gets 
This category is about parish Kungsbacka in Halland County Sweden.

Template to use is 

{{Hatnote | This category is about parish Kungsbacka in Halland County Sweden}}

We also informs if an disambiguation page exist

ex Kila (D),  Kila (S) and Kila (U)

This category is about parish Kila in Södermanland County Sweden. For other uses see Kila (disambiguation).

The template then has a second argument for the disambiguation page

{{Hatnote|This category is about parish Kila in Södermanland County Sweden|Kila}} 

by C S G2G6 Pilot (274k points)

Hiski has recently added descriptive maps to there parish page.  They show where the parish is in relation to the country and they show a more detailed map of the parish. Being from the northwest part of the US, I am not familiar with Finland.  I would like to see this done with Swedish parishes.  I also made the decision to add redundancy for the sake of being clear to others.  I try to spell out our state names, but make some exceptions like USA.  I like the consistency of hatnotes but would encourage the use of the län abbreviations along with the name.  Halland County(N), Sweden instead of Halland County Sweden.  I was taught to use commas.  I also believe that if I am going to be discussing my family in Sweden, I can learn to use Halland läns(N), Sverige out of respect to the country.  I have seen that Magnus will often not add läns.  I do not know what is correct.  I have also stopped writing Läns.

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