Wednesday, January 19, 2011

My JONES Family Coding System

You might imagine how difficult it would be to keep all these JONES family names straight...generation after generation, from Gadforch to me! This would be more than 30 generations. It became clear fairly early that a coding system would be most helpful. The one I now describe is the first pass at a coding system I have used since the early 1990s. It only deals with my family as I tried to organize and keep straight all those generations who passed down the same names and shared many of the same geographic locations. There is a second coding system I have developed which can be used to organize all families, but that is yet to come.

My JONES family coding system is simple. Starting with the letter "J", all members of my family are given this tag. Then, the alphabet is used to tag each generation starting with the first generation at "A". Of course you have to decide which is the first generation which is usually how far back you have gotten in your tree climbling. For me, in the early 1990s, it was Gadforch who flourished around 850 A.D. Thus, the first of my family was coded JA-1. "J" was for JONES. "A" was for the first generation. "-1" was for the first member of this first generation. The wife of Gadforch, who remains unknown to this day, was tagged "JA-2". Simple and straight forward it is!

The son of Gadforch was Ynyr who flurished around 890 A.D. He was the second generation and would be tagged "JB-1". "J" is for JONES, "B" is for the second generation, and "-1" for the first member of this second generation. His wife was Rhiengar (Ryeingar) would be labeled "JB-2".

Now Tudor Trevor (Tydyr Trefor) was the third generation. He was born around 900 A.D. and a primary document records his life at Winchester, 934 A.D.! He was coded "JC-1" and was the son of "JB-1". His wife Angharad, was the daughter of Howel Dda who came into Powys 942 A.D. She was coded "JC-2". The brother of Tudor Trevor was "Ynyr frych Abad Dor" [Abbot of Dore Abbey, in the Golden Vale, Herefordshire). He was coded "JC-3". His wife would be coded "JC-4".

By now, you should get the idea. The first letter, capitalized, would be the first letter of your surname. The second letter, capitalized, would be the generation, from "A" = first generation, "B" = second generation, "C" = third generation...on and on for at least 26 generations. The individals in each generation would be given a number, thus labling and separating each family member. Give it a try!

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