City, Township, County, State... Is the Style / Format good enough to replicate?

+2 votes

I've entered Geographic categories for North Carolina Counties, and drilled down deeper / more specific in Harnett County and Cumberland County.  Before I continue, I'd like to know what folks think of how I've done it, i.e. how they are named (style), how subcategories are organized, etc.  I have already had to rename the 100 counties due to a style mis-step... I'd hate to have to do that again if it can be avoided.

Also, I've added a line or two of text to some of the categories, such as for Lillington, North Carolina, [[Category:Lillington, North Carolina]] which tells you a little bit about the city (location mostly.)  I figured this might be helpful / richer.   Should this sort of thing be reserved for Free Space articles ?  What do you think?

Also check out [[Category:Fort Bragg, North Carolina]]

- Mike

in Policy and Style by Michael Gabbard G2G6 Mach 2 (20.7k points)
recategorized by Chris Whitten

2 Answers

+2 votes

Great work, Mike! Awesome.

The text on the category pages is great. I think that's definitely appropriate and it's wonderful that you're doing it. (This does bring up the question of whether a town, city, or state ever needs a Free-Space Profile. I'd think it might, if you want to add photos and do other things that you can only do on profile pages.)
In terms of style of the descriptive text, I made some edits to [[Category:Lillington, North_Carolina]] to show what I would do differently. These are all minor and we don't have fixed style rules, so don't consider these final in any way.
Here's a bigger question: Should categories for no-longer-existing places have something different in the title? For example, you have [[Category:Albemarle County, North Carolina (Historical)]], i.e. "Historical" is in the category name.
Did people want to adopt this as the style? I'm inclined to think that the name should be formatted in the normal way, and the historical part should be explained on the category page (which you've also done). What do others think?
by Chris Whitten G2G Astronaut (1.5m points)
I notice that the issue about "(Historical)" in category names was discussed by Brian and Lianne on

Bottom line: We want to change those. Sorry for the confusion, Mike.
Thank you for the encouragement, Chris.  It's good to know that I'm on the right track, and I'm more confident about continuing to expand categories in NC.  As you know, I've begun adding Free Space articles  for cemeteries and graveyards within those counties as well.

As for Places that don't exist any longer:  I did see that thread, but must have missed the final determination.  I will update 'Historic' counties like Albemarle and drop the '(Historical)' tag on the end.  I will still explain their historical nature in the text on the category page, and I will still include them as sub-categories in both the State-level Category, as well as a category for Historic Counties.  

- Mike
Have we added the Style for naming Historic places / places that no longer exist to the help page / style page for categories yet?  Also, perhaps I've missed it but how does a WikiTree-er get to the Category style pages from the main help page?  

- Mike
Hey Mike. All this is pretty new and rapidly evolving, as you know, so the Help and Style pages need work. There is a "Styles and Standards" category that's linked from the Help Index (category).
+1 vote

I agree with Chris in terms of how to handle the counties within a state, and is the method I have been using - after hiccups along the way - to prepopulate several states.

What I am curious about is your thoughts on how to handle cities, towns, townships, etc.  We are have a conversation about that as well on the Categorization Page under Townships. We have been hoping to get some other opinions/thoughts on how to proceed with this.  I like what  you have done and think it is probably the most straightforward option even if it does mean more work occasionally referencing multiple categories (ie. Township and County). The only other option I can see is to not use townships at all and just have people associate things to the nearest town. The problem with this is it can become cumbersome and confusing trying to decide what is the nearest town for a particular area. For instance, much of my mother's side of the family is part of a farming community that is at least five miles from the nearest town so it seems awkward to try to make the "members" of that town.  They refer to the area as East Troy (eastern part of Troy township) but there has never been a town named that only the church and cemetery. 

Just not sure what the right way to proceed is, but I am inclinded toward the method you appear to have used. Thoughts?

by Living Chelton G2G6 (8.8k points)
States with significant rural areas, especially southern states, require Townships for local identity and geographic clarity.  In Harnett County, NC - where a large portion of my ancestors lived - it matters whether you are from Black River Township or Anderson Creek Township.  The Culture is different, the land is different.  When it comes to anthropological questions in family history, i.e. "how did they live?," it's significant if they lived in the Township, but not in an unincorporated community or incorporated town within that township.  I think it muddies the water to try to 'make' them part of a nearby town when they aren't.  I'd vote for being as specific as you can be, especially the farther back you go in time. As we all know, communities come and go, merge, etc. and I think we should document that when we can.

Personally, I feel pretty strongly about having Townships as Categories.   Like Chris, I'm a fan of Cross-referencing subcategories.   Lillington is in Lillington Township, but also Harnett County, so it shows up as sub-categories in both places.  I don't see any harm in that, and there are advantages.

- Mike
I totally agree with you for all the reasons you state. I was just curious about the logic which is - for good or bad - pretty much how i came at the topic. Thanks.
Thanks, Brian.  It's an important discussion, and it's exciting to see Categories develop and be implemented.  - Mike

South Carolina is a very confusing state. During it's history, it has had parishes, districts, and counties. Pendleton District was a major cross over point for people settling Georgia and Alabama. Some of my family came from Pendleton District so it is of special interest to me, but I'm sure other parts of South Carolina will have had just as many changes.

On 1-Jan-1800, Washington District was disbanded. Pendleton County and Greenville County were renamed as districts.


On 19-Dec-1816, Pendleton District gained the Indian lands along the Chattooga. Finally, on 20-Dec-1826, the Pendleton District was abolished and replaced by Anderson and Pickens Districts. Pickens District incorporated both the current Pickens and Oconee Counties. []

And that's just the information from 1800 to 1816 in the n/w corner of South Carolina. How can a state like SC be completely categorized when it's historical divisions are so fluid?

Related questions

+2 votes
1 answer
181 views asked Aug 1, 2012 in Policy and Style by Michael Gabbard G2G6 Mach 2 (20.7k points)
+5 votes
1 answer
+6 votes
4 answers
+2 votes
0 answers
+1 vote
1 answer
95 views asked Sep 18, 2012 in Genealogy Help by Ed Burke G2G6 Mach 2 (24.4k points)
+5 votes
0 answers
141 views asked Jul 19, 2018 in Policy and Style by Lynlee OKeeffe G2G6 Mach 1 (19.3k points)
+2 votes
1 answer
133 views asked Apr 23, 2020 in WikiTree Help by Phil Howard G2G6 (6.2k points)
+4 votes
9 answers
540 views asked Sep 14, 2018 in Genealogy Help by Teresa Davis G2G6 Mach 6 (64.2k points)

WikiTree  ~  About  ~  Help Help  ~  Search Person Search  ~  Surname:

disclaimer - terms - copyright