Coordinates for places- fomerly RE: [Ger-Poland-Volhynia] Powiat maps of Russian Poland

Gary Warner gary at
Thu Mar 18 08:57:54 PST 2004

To all,

Adding geographic coordinates to place names is indeed a good idea, and, as 
Karl notes, adds a great deal of satisfaction to your family history work 
to know where a place is located.

Any of you that use the Deluxe version of Legacy 5.0 as your family history 
program can now add geographic coordinates to all place names using a 
feature called Geo Location List.  It is based on an electronic gazetteer 
of the world that is a part of the program, and although not foolproof, 
works most of the time, especially if you have a reasonable clue how to 
spell the place, or at least know what the place name starts with or sounds 
like.   The times when I cannot make it work are usually when one of our 
members gives me a place in the USA and there are three such places in 
different counties in the same state!

For instance, In Karl's place called "(Kustanai) Qostanay, Kazakhstan", it 
seems that Qostanay is the state or region in Kazakhstan in which Kustanai 
is located, and that Kustanai is located at coordinates N531000, 
E0633500.  When you have found this place in the Geo Location List, Legacy 
will add those coordinates to that place name in your family file, and then 
ALSO link you to a Map Quest map that shows where it is in the world!  Very 
cool in my estimation.

For those of you who submit data to me for inclusion in the master Pedigree 
Database, it would sure be nice if you all used this feature, or anything 
else that ensured consistent spelling of place names (to the extent that 
such is possible), so that there are not a dozen different spellings of the 
same place name that I then have to merge manually.  In my current merge of 
data. I just made 13 different spellings of Vancouver, British Columbia, 
Canada into one master location.  Oh that it were possible to do that with 
all places  :-)

Gary Warner
Gig Harbor, WA

At 11:25 PM 3/17/2004, Jutta Dennerlein wrote:
>Karl, I recently had a discussion with another genealogist how likely it
>would be that an English speaking Census Taker would write down
>'Friedrichsburg' when a German immigrant gave his place of birth as
>'Friedrichsberg' using a heavy German accent and trying to speak English.
>So I just tried to imagine what kind of data you would find today if your
>ancestors would have answered "(Kustanai) Qostanay, Kazakhstan" as their
>origin :)
>I think it is a good idea to enter the current country. But then the world
>keeps changing and even your carefully researched data can only be
>interpreted in a correct way if it is dated information. Anyone using your
>data in 50 years time might have the same difficulties locating the places
>if he/she doesn't consider the fact that you entered the data in 2004 and
>that he/she will need an (old) map of that time period to find the place.
>Maybe adding the geographical coordinates would be a good option?
>-----Original Message-----
>From: ger-poland-volhynia-bounces at
>[mailto:ger-poland-volhynia-bounces at]On Behalf Of Karl
>Sent: Thursday, March 18, 2004 5:02 AM
>To: Peter Fischer
>Cc: ger-poland-volhynia
>Subject: Re: [Ger-Poland-Volhynia] Powiat maps of Russian Poland
> >Secondly, many
> >people that post ancestral information simply put Germany or Poland, etc.
> >as a birthplace. It would be the same as stating North America for any of
> >over on this side of the pond.
> >I guess its just a pet peeve of mine
>Well that's a pet peeve of mine too but unfortunately many times all we have
>to go on is what others know, and this may be all they know. If they had no
>interest in genealogy they would not realize the importance of giving
>specific information. Another good example I see all the time is Germans who
>listed their parent's death location in EWZ as Russland. When you translate
>that into our current geography that could mean Russia, Belarus, Ukraine,
>Kazakhstan, and as was just confirmed to me this week Uzbekistan. So at the
>time, any cities I find in these EWZ records would have been the Soviet
>Union but many times that gives readers little idea of where that location
>To help out anyone in the future using the data I enter, I have been
>entering the current country just so they know where to find this city.
>"Russland" is a vast land where even some genealogists might get lost just
>as many Germans did. "Kustanai, Russland" really tells you nothing but
>"(Kustanai) Qostanay, Kazakhstan" immediately tells how far this family was
>displaced and where you need to look for this bizarre city.
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