comments sought for new Category:Wisconsin Pioneers and Settlers (suggestion) and proposal for similar categories [closed]

+10 votes

Hi! Wisconson Colonists should not be created (it's a red category on Bierman-212 now, meaning it doesn't yet exist), but I couldn't find that there was a system for identifying "first settlers" or others who would have been called Colonists if Wisconsin had been one of the 13 Colonies that became the United States. Although it had European settlers before it was admitted to the Union, I'm not familiar enough with its history to know what type of categorization hierarchy would be appropriate for those folks.

So... here is my suggestion for "pre-statehood" USA states (excluding the 13 Colonies), using Wisconsin as the example:

Category:Wisconsin Pioneers and Settlers

Under [[Category:Wisconsin]] and [[Category:US Pioneers and Settlers]] (which is a subcategory of the Westward Ho project and has good info on its category page). 

Contact for Category:Wisconsin Pioneers and Settlers to be the Westward Ho project & basic criteria "people in Wisconsin before 29 May 1848, when it was admitted to the Union.<ref>Wikipedia: [ Wisconsin]</ref> (See [ Wisconsin, Homesteaders] for people arriving in Wisconsin under the Homesteaders Act.) 

That last... more explanation needed that Homesteaders should be under the Homesteaders Project instead?

I found three states that already had categories for its earliest settlers: Oregon, Louisiana, and California: Oregon Pioneers - Louisiana First Families - California First Families


The two "First Families" categories are categorized only under their parent project, not also Category:US Pioneers and Settlers - I think all such categories for USA (including pre-Statehood) should be under Category:US Pioneers and Settlers even if not managed by that project so that they can be easily found.

The 13 Colonies need a separate discussion (now posted - see [this discussion]).

Cheers, Liz

edit: just realized that "Wisconsin" wasn't tagged, so swapped it for Bierman

WikiTree profile: Henry Bierman
closed with the note: this discussion is a few years old - the idea at the time was dismissed, but a lot has changed since then, so I have closed this discussion and suggested that Westward Ho start a new one.
in Genealogy Help by Liz Shifflett G2G6 Pilot (386k points)
closed by Liz Shifflett
Thanks for working on this. It is so important! I want to point out that the Louisiana First Families category isn't just for the earliest settlers or pioneers, rather, it is for the first person who came to Louisiana from that particular family. Must have been there by 1900. We do have a few other categories that would fit better in my opinion. Category: German Coast Settlers; Category; Louisiana Acadian Coast Settlers; Category: Canary Island Settlers; Category: Wall of Names at the Acadian Memorial. I may have missed a few. We certainly need one for Spanish Settlers, African Settlers and Native American Settlers (or another/better descriptive term for the last two)

Thanks Jackie. I'm still looking around for a good place... I'm not sure categorization is going to do it. I think a Space page might be better. For example, for Louisiana, it could have

== Louisiana ==
* [[Category:Louisiana First Families]]: a broad category under the [[Project:Louisiana Families|Louisiana Families Project]] (criteria is on both the [xx category page] and the [xx project page]). Narrower categories include:
** ... the ones you named.
* [[Category:Louisiana Families]] is added by the template {{Louisiana Family}} and includes everybody who claims Louisiana. Please also include a location category (see the list of parished on [[Category:Louisiana]]).

* [[Category:Native American Tribes of Louisiana]]

* [[Category:Slavery, Louisiana]]

Didn't realize we distinguished between French & Spanish first families - did you mean we need to? (subcategories under Louisiana First Families? - France, Louisiana First Families & Spain, Louisiana First Families - seems a bit clunky).


No, we don't make any distinction for first families by nationality, just by time period.

The Spanish has governance from about 1765 until a few years before statehood (1812); The French before 1765; the natives before the French. We also have more sets of categories such as Acadian Immigrants to Louisiana, French...German...maybe more.

The Canary Islanders would be part of the Spanish Settlers if we had a Spanish Settlers category. I only bring them up because these groups are equal to some of the early categories that were set up years ago before my time. All of the nation groups of people were made up of numerous families, came around the same time and settled together in the same areas. North Louisiana was settled by mostly Anglos.

I find it very hard to search categories and my free space pages are lost in the cyber worlds so whatever we do, I hope it is easy to locate.

I'm not advocating for more categories; I have noticed only a handful of people in the Louisiana Families and Acadian projects using them. I do advocate for being inclusive. If we have a category for German Coast Settlers, then we need one for a few other groups as well. We could limit the time period to around 1800 for all the groups in the Louisiana Project.

Jackie - maybe it's time to move the following sections from the project page -

to a space page & expand it as discussed above & then categorize it under [[Category:US Pioneers and Settlers]].

What do you think of the name

Space:Louisiana Early Inhabitants 

... could cover Native American Tribes, Louisiana First Families, Slaves, Islenos, etc. Sound good to you?

I'll post to the Louisiana Families Google Group too & we can continue the discussion there.

Cheers, Liz

I think the Wall of Names Category is actually under another parent and something to do with monuments.

What you propose seems very reasonable to me. Makes sense and would be inclusive as well as be where they belong in the big scheme of things. I just hope we have a good way to find the freespace pages when we need to.
Just finished up with - I think it came out pretty good!
Liz  you have gone astray ... It was as is Ilinois, Michigan, KY, Ohio, Indiana etc  part of Virginia  The Mother of States Virginia
I've been working on "rellies" who settled in Columbia Co., WI.  There is a two volume book, "The History of Columbia County, Wisconsin" which has been very helpful in finding relatives.  I'm sure other counties in Wisconsin have similar publications.  --BC

Hi Bruce, Michael, everyone... I just posted on another thread (my third G2G question on the subject) a suggestion that might work as a solution here too. Short version:

Category:First Families

What'd'ya think? Longer version (copied from where I commented on my 2nd G2G question, about Colonial categories):

I did finally figure out how to ask the question so I'd get the answers I needed!  Check it out:

In that new question (which is getting the answers I was looking for!), the discussions have led to perhaps a better solution (or just a different option to a solution to a different problem that covers this one too)...

I posted [on that thread] the following suggestion:

I wonder if Category:First Families would work? Then at least all the first families/first citizens categories/pages (and any other project/category/page that self-identified as pertaining to "First Families" whereever) would have a place to go & be found.

Does creating a Category:First Families seem like a good solution?

and an update. Discussion in the Categorization Google Group = no for Category:First Families as a solution.
If I were looking for a category, it wouldn't be "First Families," which also has political implications as in President and the First Family.  I would be typing "settler" in the category box or "pioneer," so I think those two words should be in the top level category.  Otherwise you risk multiplication of categories or people giving up on guessing and entering nothing.

6 Answers

+7 votes
Colorado has a First Families project which correlates with the state genealogy society First Families.  I happen to have one ancestor listed with them, so I included his name in that category.  But I have twenty other ancestors who are not listed with them, but meet the criteria.  It would be like knowing you had an ancestor who fought in the American Revolution, but not joining the D.A.R.  Or having an ancestor who was an Ontario loyalist, but not joining the U.E.L.  Lately I've been researching a family which was living on the western slope of Colorado while it was still all Ute Territory (before 1880).  To me, they are fascinating "first northwestern corner of Colorado settlers."  That is a category which only exists in my brain.
by J. Crook G2G6 Pilot (193k points)
+6 votes

Thought I would add this to show how other organizations might categorize pioneers and settlers.  The Ohio Genealogical Society has quite a hierarchy for people who came to Ohio (which became a State in 1803):

  • Society of the Families of the Old Northwest Territory: Direct descendants of any person who lived in the Old Northwest Territory prior to 3 March 1803.
  • First Families: Direct descendants of an individual who settled in the area now encompassed by the State of Ohio by the end of 1820.
  • Settlers and Builders: Direct descendants of an individual who settled in the area now encompassed by the State of Ohio between 1 January 1821 and 31 December 1860.
  • Century Families: Direct descendants of any person residing in Ohio from 1861 to 100 years prior to the current year.
by Vic Watt G2G6 Pilot (323k points)
+6 votes
Many state genealogical societies have their own names for early settlers or pioneers in their state. Any state specific categories for this should use the names given to them by their state genealogical society (with a , State Name on the end of the name if the category does not use the name of the state) and then that category would be put into a higher level category that follows the proper naming convention.
by Richard Ryker G2G6 Mach 3 (36.3k points)

Working with Jackie (we're co-leaders of the Louisiana Families project), I think the best solution is that every place does their own & then have what they've done added to the US Pioneers and Settlers category - if that's the best place to collect all these. (And if so, it would need to be a top-level category [no people profiles] so that the Space: pages/projects don't get lost.)

Not sure that makes sense, so here's an example: [[Category:Oregon Pioneers]] is already listed there. I just proposed to the Louisiana Families project members that we create a Space page that will be listed there. The Colorado First Families category mentioned earlier in this discussion is only under Category:Colorado. It should have [[Category:US Pioneers and Settlers]] added to it. Already there also is New Netherland Immigrants and Progenitors

Cheers, Liz

+7 votes
so... looking like best place is

[[Category:US Pioneers and Settlers]]

if Westward Ho has no objection.

Is [[Category:Wisconsin Pioneers and Settlers]] ok or something else?

Cheers, Liz
by Liz Shifflett G2G6 Pilot (386k points)

I was worried the "Wisconson Colonists" category would be created by accident, so I removed it from Henry Bierman 

When a decision is made about what to call the category, please check his profile & see if he qualifies.

Cheers, Liz

[[Category:Wisconsin Pioneers and Settlers]]

Magnifique ! 

+2 votes

There is an existing Immigrant Pioneers sub-project and category with the usual options of project box with Westward Ho co-managing the profile or sticker (relatively new) for non-project managed profiles. Separate categories by state seems rather cumbersome for a category which, to date, has limited use.

- T Stanton, Westward Ho Project Coordinator

by T Stanton G2G6 Pilot (132k points)
I expressed interest in the Wisconsin pioneer sticker to Liz as some of my ancestors were early settlers of Green Bay and Oconto, Wisconsin Territory. If the sticker were more general in scope, it probably wouldn't even occur to me to use it. I think that people will identify more with a state specific category then a general one.  Just my two cents...
Thanks T - Not sure what you're recommending. Is there an existing category that the Wisconsin pioneer ancestor of M Cole should go under?
Oh dang. Just realized this is on the old (very old) discussion. I thought I had closed it (it was pretty soundly shot down at the time).

Please see the current discussion that is just about Wisconsin: (which is closed).

Perhaps Westward Ho could start a new G2G post where the overall structure could be discussed?

Thanks all!
+1 vote
I am in agreement with a category for people who lived in a territory before it became a State. The category should include all people who lived in that territory before it became a state, including the children of families that moved as a unit. Being a child on the frontier was just as tough a life as it was for the adults. Children born after the territory becomes a State are no different from people moving into the the State after it becomes a State.

When a territory becomes a State, then the conditions for commerce, public schools, social organizations, justice, and law enforcement have been formalized, and the character of life changes dramatically and rapidly from that time and into the future.

A case could be made for an Early Citizens category, to tag those people who helped develop the new State into its present form, and which would apply to outstanding people who moved into, or were born into, a State during the first fifty years of its development. Early Citizens played a unique and meaningful role in the development of a community, whether it be a State, County, or City.

Having clearly delineated categories for Pioneers and another for Early Citizens, will be helpful for future students of history to more clearly understand the dynamics of humanity's social developments.
by David Thomson G2G6 Mach 1 (12.5k points)

Thanks David! I just closed this discussion with the comment:

this discussion is a few years old - the idea at the time was dismissed, but a lot has changed since then, so I have closed this discussion and suggested that Westward Ho start a new one.

(My reply to T, above, is where I suggested that Westward Ho might want to start a new discussion.)

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