RootsMagic Family Tree Software

Setting up sources in RootsMagic 7

I came across the post Rootsmagic 7 Source Citations on the Empty Branches on the Family Tree blog where she was having issue with using the source templates.

Firstly, in answer to her question, if you have used a lot of sources, then yes, you will end up with a lot of master sources in your database. It will also take some time to set up these master sources, and link them to each individual.  However, once you get the hang of them, using the source templates in RootsMagic 7 (or Legacy) do make it easier to attach sources to the events in your tree.

The following is an example of some of the tips to make this process a little quicker and easier.

I have a family history that was sent to me when I first started researching my family history, and I am going to show the steps to take in setting up the master source for the family history, and adding a citation to each event covered in the family history.  This family history was titled “Descendants of James Smith and Dora Mansfield”, and was compiled by Jennie Bradley, one of their descendants.  I transcribed a copy from the family history held by her father.

This family history started with John Mansfield, Dora’s father.  However, since when you set up a family tree you start with yourself, and then work your way backwards, I needed to find the person most closely related to me first.  This was my husband, but since he is still living, I’ll skip to adding the details for his father.  This is the information the family history had for him:

Murray Irwin Willis


This is the information in the Edit Person screen in RootsMagic 7


To add the source, I go to the second box after the age box, and the citation manager comes up


Since I haven’t set up any sources yet, I select Add New Source

Then I scroll through the list for the appropriate source template.  I decided to choose the Book, Basic Format template.


Then I chose “Descendants of James Smith and Dora Mansfield” as the Master Source name.  Since this family history wasn’t numbered, I will leave the page number blank.

Since I am going to add this Master source to a number of events, I then select Memorise


Then I can go back in to add the source to the death event, and click Paste to add this source to the death event.


I can then click Paste to add this source to every event for every other person in the family history.

I also have the birth and death certificates for Murray, so I’ll now set up a source for each of these certificates.


For this, I use the Vital Records (state, certificates) Template

My master source name for this is Birth certificate, Victoria.  With this template, I can use the same Master Source for any number of certificates, and I only need to change the bottom part for each certificate.


Since this certificate provides an age and birthplace for each parents, as well as the marriage date and place, I would memorize this particular citation and paste it to the birth event for each parent, and their marriage event.