What is RootsMapper and what is its purpose? The website states the following:
"The goal of RootsMapper to is to allow you to visualize the origins of your ancestors and see how they migrated. We utilize the Google Maps API to plot and link up your family tree data that is pulled directly from FamilySearch.org in real-time."You will need a FamilySearch account to use RootsMapper. Here's the start page.
To use RootsMapper, press the blue "Login to FamilySearch" button at the top left side of the page. You will be redirected to the FamilySearch login page.
After you've signed in to FamilySearch, the magic happens.
With myself set as the Root Person, RootsMapper mapped seven generations of my ancestors' origins and migration patterns. You can set the number of generations from one to seven.
The pink lines represent maternal ancestors and the blue lines represent paternal ancestors. The pin color represents the gender of the ancestor – blue for males and pink for females. The numbers on the pins represent what generation they belong to.
Here is my map showing seven generations. I cropped the map to show where my pins landed so it would be bigger and easier to see on my blog.
Isn't this just so cool?
As you can see, my paternal ancestors (represented by those blue lines) were born in Norway, Sweden and Denmark. Some of these ancestors immigrated to the United States.
My maternal ancestors (represented by the pink lines) were from several different parts of the world. Those pink lines heading out into the Atlantic Ocean are actually landing on Islands - The Archipelago of the Azores and the Island of Madeira. Some of those ancestors from Portugal immigrated to Brazil. My maternal grandfather and his family, including my mother, were born in Brazil and immigrated to the United States in 1952. Other maternal ancestors were from Mexico. And still others were from the United States.
You may have noticed that a lot of the pins on this map are overlapping each other. Not a problem! Just click on them, and they separate. You can see what that looks like in the screenshot below. Each of those pins represents an ancestor.
With the pins separated, you can click on each one to see the information for that specific ancestor. This can be helpful because I noticed that some of my ancestors were missing information. That could be a clue that I need to do more research, or that I simply need to add the missing information to FamilySearch.org.
Also, you can change the root person on your map by clicking on the ancestor's ID number in blue below their name.
On some of these ancestor information boxes, you will see a green "Expand Parents" box at the bottom right. If you click that, the map will show that ancestor's parents.
This is what happened when I clicked the "Expand Parents" button for Aaron Parsons, who was born in Massachusetts in 1737. The red arrows are pointing to the 8th generation pins that weren't there before.
When I clicked on the blue #8 pin, the ancestor information box for Aaron Parsons' father appeared. He was born in Massachusetts in 1712.
One more thing…you can also zoom in on the map to get a more detailed view of your ancestors' places of origin and migration patterns.
An important note – If you want an accurate map, it is very important to make sure the information contained in FamilySearch.org is correct.
So, what do you think? Pretty awesome right?
The website also has a helpful FAQ button on the bottom right side of the page. Have fun exploring RootsMapper.com!
Since publishing this blog post, RootsMapper.com has released version 1.0.3, which, according to their blog, includes these new features:
- You can now set the generation run to 8 instead of 7.
- There is no longer a green "Expand Parents" button. Instead there are pin icons.
- You can now view an ancestor in FamilySearch.org by clicking on the FamilySearch tree icon next to the ancestor's name.
Thanks for reading!
© 2013 Copyright by Jana Last