[Ger-Poland-Volhynia] Naming and positions of the villages

Peter chamdo4ever at gmail.com
Tue Jan 27 19:52:56 PST 2015

Many thanks to everyone who replied to my query on this, both here, in
the other thread, and those who wrote to me privately.

I well understand how it makes sense for a comprehensive site and
organization like the SGGEE to use contemporary names of places when
making reference to them. It makes discussing such places much easier
within the organization, and provides a single point of reference for

For me and my personal tree / database that I work on, I prefer to go
with exact names at the time of the events taking place in such
locations. This is especially true in that the software I use is
starting to support time dependent names and hierarchies, ie: the name
of a specific location can change based on the date which is
remarkably helpful as the location need only be entered once but can
have many different date dependent names.

As Gary also points out, latitude and longitude coordinates are also
incredibly helpful and are perhaps the prime designator for a
location, maybe even more importantly than the name and hierarchy.
However, Gary mentions using the Legacy software to notate locations
and coordinates, which is not something I can advocate -- I remain
devoted to the Gramps software which also beautifully keeps track of
latitude and longitude coordinates entered in a variety of formats for
any specific location. One need not use closed source, proprietary
software to accomplish that.

Anyhow, many thanks again for all of the helpful responses.


Peter Schmidt

On Tue, Jan 27, 2015 at 6:22 PM, Gary Warner <garyw555 at gmail.com> wrote:
> Gary,
> We agree completely that it is important to know the historical names of
> villages, in addition to the modern-day name as well (if the village still
> exists).   The problems we have in using historical villages are manyfold.
> First, a person might live in a certain village all of his life, or even
> many generations of the same family might all live in the same place, but if
> we follow the historic names only, then we might show different village
> names for the same place- all in a single record for that individual family.
> That would also cause confusion, since it would not be apparent that the
> family never moved.   Second, the merging of records is an impossible task
> if we try to keep straight not only the village name, but the historical
> county and state for each record- this would result in as many as three or
> four versions of the same place that someone with great knowledge MIGHT be
> able to decide which was correct for any given event.   The real decider on
> any naming, of course, is whether the villages have the same coordinates.
> That is why we use Legacy to enter village names, because it allows us to
> enter coordinates for each village.
> For our purposes, especially in merging of data, we think it is better to
> use the village name of today in the first place, and then show alternate
> names for the same place in parenthesis.  In the instance where a village no
> longer exists, we would show the village name, and then put "(lost)" after
> the village name.
> What we use is not perfect, but works for our needs.
> Gary
> On 1/27/2015 2:30 PM, getober wrote:
>> While it makes sense to use today's Polish names for our ancestors'
>> villages, history cannot be simply erased.
>> There would be difficulty in using gps positions for the village,but this
>> may be the only real solution. I have noted that modern Polish maps
>> frequently indicate the old village position as "stary" so and so: some
>> areas have been lost. For example, Winduga-Rachinska in Lipno, which I found
>> last night on a list published in the mid- 1800s, is not indicated in modern
>> maps.
>> However, Google Earth has done exemplary work in indicating historic
>> villages. While certainly not absolutely perfect, I salute their attempt!
>> Gary Tober
>> Sent via the Samsung Galaxy S™ III, an AT&T 4G LTE smartphone
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