Friends, Neighbours and Acquaintances – FAN Fact in Roots Magic


In a recent post in the Busting Your Brick Wall Challenge, I talked about researching the friends, neighbours and acquaintances of our ancestors and I thought I would share the FAN fact that I created in Roots Magic to help me keep track of these people as I research my family.

From the post:

On 26 July 1876, my great-grandparents, William and Emily Brown, had their oldest two sons, Joseph and Arthur, baptized at St. Philips Church in Sheffield. On the same day, George and Mary Draycott had their two oldest sons, Arthur and Frank, baptized in the same church. What did these two events have in common in addition to the date? Both couples lived at Court 2, Robert Street in Sheffield. Clearly the Draycotts and Browns were close neighbours and I should do more research on the Drayton family to see how long the friendship goes back and to see if their lives intersect at other places.Busting Your Brick Wall

I wanted to put the George and Mary Draycott family into my Roots Magic database so that I could record what I found when I was researching them, however these people, as far as I know, are not actually related to my family and it would be easy to lose track of why I added them. To link them to my family, I created a FAN fact type that I could share between the two families.

FAN Fact


I’m interested to hear how everyone else keeps track of their ancestor’s FAN club. Please share your comments below.

Barbara J Starmans is a social historian, freelance writer and obsessed genealogist living in Richmond Hill, Ontario, Canada and has been doing genealogical research for the past 35 years. She is a graduate of the National Institute for Genealogical Studies in Toronto, Canada with professional learning certificates in General Methodology and in English Records and recently become an instructor for them with an intermediate course on Social History.

Discussion4 Comments

  1. Regina Markowicz

    May I ask what you used for a sentence please after creating the FAN Fact? I would like to complete this but do not know how to enter a sentence. Thanks so much, Regina Bruner Markowicz

    • Hi Regina, sorry for the late reply but only just noticed your question. For the principal, use [person] was a friend, neighbour or acquaintance of [OtherPersons]. and for the witness use [person] was a friend, neighbour or acquaintance of [ThisPerson].

  2. Could you explain a little more about how you set this up? Are you creating fake marriages? Family Facts? Individual facts?

  3. Hi Stephanie,

    My personal preference is to always create individual facts, but that is just my way. This is not a fake marriage but rather just note (using a custom fact type) that the Draycott family and the Brown family were FANs on this date. In this case, it would appear that they were both friends and neighbours.

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