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Family Trees: How to Add Stillborn Children to FamilySearch & Ancestry

Is a story of a mother complete if we do 
not record the identity of her stillborn   children? Today I'm going to show you how you 
can add stillborn children to the family tree   so you can make sure you're telling the 
complete story about the females on your   family tree. Whenever you are recording the 
birth of any child, it is important that you   use documentation. And particularly when you 
are trying to document a stillborn child,   you want to base this information on some type of 
documentation. Now there are not a lot of records   that are created for stillbirths. There are some, 
and I'll show you one in just a moment. However,   you can utilize interviews with people. You could 
use family bibles occasionally the stillborn   child is recorded there. You can also utilize 
diaries and other first-hand accounts about   the loss of a child just.

Be sure to tell other 
people what sources you use and, if possible,   share those images when you start recording that 
there was a stillborn child in your family tree.   Over in Ohio, as you can see on the Ohio History 
Connection page, which is associated with the   Ohio State Archives, there is a death index. And 
one of the things they have – Because I remember   being in the state archive and going past this 
collection. Unfortunately, it didn't have enough   time to explore it. However, I now can search an 
index to this collection using the search form.   In this collection, I went ahead and used the name 
stillborn. and then I have to have part of a last   name. So I'm just going to use a wildcard search. 
And then I'm going to limit it to franklin county. And do a search range. It's pretty broad, but 
I'm going to go ahead and use it 1913 to 1935.   and click search.

Now I find that there are 
quite a few of the stillborns recorded. This   is their volume number and their certificate. 
And I can go and look those up. So, I do have   evidence that a stillborn child was born with 
the last name Brauwnex, possibly even Broadway,   in Franklin County, Ohio. And I have the 
date. Now that you know that you have   evidence of a stillborn child born to a woman, 
what do you do? Well, you're going to add that   to the FamilySearch family tree. So, let's 
say that for my Grandma Emma, there is   a record that said that when Lewis 
was born, she had had nine children.   Now I have one child that she recorded in 
her Bible, but this is not a stillborn death.   I did have another record in 1904 about a child 
dying.

I did find that certificate, and there's   still a few other children to add to this tree. 
So, I click "Add a child." You simply add a child   as you would if you had a living birth. So, now 
I'm going to click on "Add a child." And now I'm   going to put in the name. I don't know the name of 
the child. So, I'm not going to put a first name.   I do know that the father's name was Brown. So, 
I'm going to do that. The child was male. They   are deceased. And now I need to put the birth date 
and the birth year. So, let's say 18 November 19   in Columbus, Ohio. And then it's the same 
date, and place/ I just did a copy and ctrl+c   copy. Control+v paste. And I went ahead and click 
next.

Now it's going to search the database to see   if I already have a match in there. I don't. So, 
I'm going to click "Create a Person." And now I   have the child in 1905, but how does anybody 
know that that child is a stillborn? Well,   I need to go to the profile, and here I can click 
"Edit." Now you can add information. In this case,   perhaps you knew that the child was stillborn at 
three months old or the child was stillborn at   eight months old. There are a lot of the records 
that actually tell you how far along in the   pregnancy what the mother was. So, if you have 
it, go ahead and put it in. Then click "Save." And that's one way you can add a stillborn. 
Another thing you could do is do add an EVENT   here on FamilySearch. And they do 
have a custom event for stillborn.   And then you put in the place- Franklin County, 
Ohio – and then tell people where you got this   information.

So, there you go. So in FamilySearch, 
you have a note, and you have a custom field for   putting a stillbirth. What are you going to add 
to your family tree about your stillborn child?   Anything you have access to. So, the child's name, 
but we'll give you some guidelines about that in   just a minute. You're going to add the gender. 
You're going to add the birth date and place,   and the death date and place. And then attach 
any sources that you know that articulates this   information. Now some records do not differentiate 
between a child that is born and is deceased   or a child that is born and lives for a few 
hours and then dies. So, do your best based   on the records that you have. Don't put your 
own presumptions into the records.

If it says   stillborn, that's what you go with. If it does not 
say stillborn, do not add a stillborn tag for a   child that dies the same day that they were born. 
Try to be as clear as you can. Now I'm over on   Ancestry. And there's actually one cool thing that 
I wish a lot of platforms has, and that is the way   to tag your ancestor. So, you're not cluttering up 
the suffix field with this extraneous information   or adding crazy graphics. So, all you have to do 
is click on MyTreeTags.

If the child died young,   so, it lives for a few hours, live for a 
few days, then you can put the "Died Young:   relationship tree tag onto your tree. And notice 
it'll just be there in your profile. So, whenever   you come across this child, you can see, "oh, 
they died young." If they did not die young, then   you're going to need to add a custom MyTreeTag. 
So, to do that, you create a custom tree tag   "Stillborn" and click "Create." And now you have 
STILLBORN attached to that tree.

And you can   attach it to anybody else in your family tree 
that is a stillborn child. So, how do you record   the name of your stillborn child? Consult the 
documents. If a document says the child's name   is Lizzie Brown, then you name the child Lizzie 
Brown. Becareful. Just because it says Lizzie,   does not mean their name is Elizabeth. Use what 
is on the documents that are available to you.   If you do not have a name identified on a 
document, or the document says something that's   "infant," "girl," "boy," "unnamed," or 
"stillborn," do not put them in your tree. So,   in this tree, it has Miss. And Miss should not be 
in that field. Then you have the gender. And you   can go ahead and click "Save." Now back to naming, 
if the father was named on the certificate,   the genealogical standard is that you use 
the father's surname as the stillborn child's   surname. So, in this case, Geiszler, because I 
do know that George Joseph Geisler was married to   Eveline Townley Peak at this time period. So, the 
last name would be Geiszler.

But not every mother   identifies the name of a father. And in that 
case, then you would just use the mother's surname   in place of the father's surname for the surname 
of a child. Now, if you have a stillborn child and   you have no identity for the parents, I don't know 
how you're going to put that into the family tree.   Because you're just going to have a floating 
tree out there of this child with no parents'   names. So, I would refrain from adding a stillborn 
child with no known parents to the family tree.

If   you do know them, then follow those practices. If 
you have other questions, don't be afraid to ask   how do I add fill in the blank to my family 
tree, and I'll be happy to answer you.   If you want more tips and tricks on how to 
get started in genealogy research, be sure   to check out this video. And if you're ready for 
something new, check out this video right here.   What are the things that you're? What 
are you going to add to the family?

As found on YouTube

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