Terry's TMG Tips

Customizing Your Source Citations

This page updated 15 Apr 2014

Version note: Applies to TMG 8 & 9

TMG has a powerful and flexible system for recording and citing your sources. It uses templates for recording information about your sources and then printing them in reports according to a set of rules you control. Two sets of templates are provided, one based on Richard S. Lackey's Cite Your Sources and the other based on Elizabeth Shown Mills' Evidence!: Citation & Analysis for the Family Historian. You can also customize your templates to suit your own needs.

Of the two systems, Ms Mills' book is more detailed and more current, so most users think the Mills templates in TMG are the best starting point (though some favor the broader approach of the Lackey templates). Wholly Genes Software has constructed a wide variety of templates that attempt to reflect the most examples in the Mills book for citing various types of sources. Making effective use of those templates is much easier with a copy of that book at hand, and purchasing one is strongly recommended (it's only around $15, sometimes less, and is available at many booksellers).

The power and flexibility of TMG's source-handling capabilities sometimes are confusing to new users, but offer seemingly endless opportunities for more experienced users to record source information exactly as they prefer. The articles listed below cover a wide range of information – from helping new users struggling to master the basics of the system to tips on using the most advanced features to record sources exactly as desired.

General Information
Understanding and using sources in TMG
Sources Basic Concepts - part of my TMG basic concepts series
A Source Tutorial - a step-by-step guide to entering sources in TMG
Using Reminders - aids to entering data in standard and custom sources
Source Elements - lists of standard Source Elements, their groups and screens
The Mechanics of Modifying Source Types
What you need to know to customize standard source types or create new custom source types
Working with Templates - how to modify source output templates
Creating a Custom Source - how to create your own custom source types
Source Elements and Groups - what you need to know about source elements
Using Split CDs to “Lump” Sources - basics on using split citation details
Converting from “Lumped” to “Split Sources” - using TMG Utitlity to make the process doable
Export/Import of Source Types - copying Source Types to another Data Set
Exporting Sources to GEDCOM - special considerations if you export
Some General Source Customizations
Suggestions for minor modifications to the standard source types
Removing "Hereinafter cited as..." - removing that unneeded phrase
Accommodating Copies of Sources - dealing with copies of original sources
Adding Given Names to Short Footnotes - when you have multiple sources with same surname
Terry's Custom Source Types
Some customized and custom source types I've found useful
A Custom Book Source Type - taming the array of book source types
Custom Census Source Types - Source Types for various census schedules
Miscellaneous Custom Sources - some useful special source types
A Simplified Source Type - an alternative for those that find TMG's source system too complex
A Custom Census Source Type using split CDs - a “lumper's” method
A Custom Cemetery Source Type using split CDs - a “lumper's” method
A Custom Will Source Type using split CDs - a “lumper's” method

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