4.8 A. Creating written descriptions of Pedigree and Ancestor Charts

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4.8  A.  Creating Written Descriptions of Pedigree and Ancestor Charts

by Judy Stouffer


Back to:  4. Proofread a Book


              1)  Pedigree Charts
                   Pedigree Chart for Indiansummer Beth  (a Morgan horse)
              2)  Ancestor Charts


Copyright © July 2010 by Judy Stouffer

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No-Derivative-Works 3.0 United States License.  It can be freely distributed in its entirety, without alteration of any kind, for non-commercial purposes, as long as you leave the copyright and license information in place.  For other uses, please contact the author.


1)  Pedigree Charts

The following technique allows a sighted Submitter or Proofreader to consistently describe the pedigree charts and ancestor charts that are sometimes found in books.  These are not family tree charts, but instead are the type of genealogy charts that trace back the ancestors of one particular person, or of a pedigreed horse or dog.

The method uses a combination of the mathematical approach employed in genealogy research, called an Ahnentafel chart, and my own knowledge of horse pedigrees as they are presented in graphical form to the sighted reader.

In the standardized description of a pedigree chart that I've come up with for blind readers:
  -  The individual whose ancestry is being traced is itself number 1,
  -  All male ancestors are even numbers, and
  -  All female ancestors are odd numbers.

(For the mathematically inclined, note that in using an Ahnentafel chart you can double any individual's number to get his/her father's number, and double a person's number and add one to get his/her mother's number).  For a detailed description of Ahnentafel charts and how their numbering works see:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ahnentafel )


The following graphic shows a typical pedigree chart of a Morgan horse (a breed of horse), "Indiansummer Beth" (the name of the horse):




Pedigree Chart for Indiansummer Beth  (a Morgan horse)

Here's the accessible description of the chart in the preceding image:

1. Indiansummer Beth
2. Sire - Indiansummer Storm
3. Dam - Lippitt Alsibeth
4. Paternal Grandsire - Applevale Storm King
5. Paternal Granddam - Edonjas Shy Lass
6. Maternal Grandsire - Lippitt Moro Alert
7. Maternal Granddam - Lippitt Hepsibeth
8. Paternal Grandsire's sire - Kingston
9. Paternal Grandsire's dam - Arabesque
10. Paternal Granddam's sire - Tweedle De
11. Paternal Granddam's dam - Cotton Starlet
12. Maternal Grandsire's sire - Lippitt Rob Roy
13. Maternal Grandsire's dam - Lippitt Gladys Moro
14. Maternal Granddam's sire - Lippitt Sam
15. Maternal Granddam's dam - Bethal


2)  Ancestor Charts

For the same kind of descriptive chart of a human's ancestors, one would use the following standardized form:

1. Person
2. Father -
3. Mother -
4. Paternal Grandfather -
5. Paternal Grandmother -
6. Maternal Grandfather -
7. Maternal Grandmother -
8. Paternal Grandfather's father -
9. Paternal Grandfather's mother -
10. Paternal Grandmother's father -
11. Paternal Grandmother's mother -
12. Maternal Grandfather's father -
13. Maternal Grandfather's mother -
14. Maternal Grandmother's father -
15. Maternal Grandmother's mother -


Some of the blind volunteers I know through Bookshare graciously helped me out by reading examples I put together to test this technique.  Did reading the examples make pedigree charts became understandable for them?  The universal reaction was "this is great!"  So it definitely works.  Yay!

I'm not sure how often the need comes up to make this kind of description but if it does, I hope others, especially Bookshare volunteers and staff, find this technique useful.


To the next Topic:  B. Customizing Word 2003



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