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The FGS Numbering System Format

       In the FGS (Family Generation Sibling) format, each person is limited to a single line, and a  unique reference can be made to any person using their FGS number.
        "F" is the filename, and usually indicates which family is being considered, such as "JLX_LEE", "Hugh_LEE", VA_LEEs", etc.  Within this file there are the lines, each composed of 3 parts: a generation #, a sibling order, and the name & data for a person.  Occasionally, this is followed by the source of the data in square brackets.

GG<Tab or hyphen>SSSSS...<Tab>Name & data...[optional source]
       "GG" is an arbitrary generation # assigned by the d.o.b. of the 1st person in the list (the earliest known person in each line).  My #'s begin with 1=1600, and increase in 25 year steps.
       "SSSS..." is the sibling order (the 2nd #).  If you're familiar with the "1-2-3" system, mine is the same, but the hyphens are removed to save space.  In short, the 7th child of "by643" is "by6437", and that person's 3rd child is "by64373".  Note that each column of the # is a generation.  Also, the # of digits in the sib# must be the same as the gen# (done for error checking against "insert" typos -- unless there's a "." in the sib#, in which case the rule DOES NOT apply).  If the birth order is unknown, a small letter is used.  If the birth # exceeds 9 (ie.2-digit), then a CAPITAL letter is used, where A=10, B=11, etc.(letters like I & O, which might look like #'s are skipped).  A trailing hyphen indicates "the spouse of" the same #.
        After the name, dates and places are in the format ",county'state".  Note that the apostrophe replaces "Co.",  "m" or "mx" where x is a #, is the marriage.  "u." means "buried", and "r." is "resided".
       While this may sound a bit complex, it's really very simple and easy to use once you get used to it.  If you're looking at an 8th generation person and want to find their parents, just look "up" the list until you find a generation 7.  If you want the siblings of this 8th generation person, look both "up" & "down" for all the other 8's WITHOUT passing a 7 or lower #.  Finding the relationship between 2 people is simply a matter of finding their closest "common" relative.  With FGS, just write one # over the other, and find the common sibling digits.  For example:
In this case, "xxb1" is the common ancestor.  Then, counting the # of digits to the right of that common ancestor, we find 7 for the 1st person and 8 for the other.  Applying those #'s to a Relationship Chart (available from the home page), with the common person in the upper left corner, and counting out 7 lines in one direction and 8 in the other, we see that these 2 people are 5th cousins once removed.  (I know there are other ways to do it, but that's the way I do it.)
        To obtain a unique FGS # for a  person, the proper format is, for example, "JLX_LEE-11-xxb14B11814", however, when all work is being done within a single file (like JLX_LEE), the "F" can be left off.  Using the longer form, you can make reference to someone in a different file.  For example, if 6-123456 Lee, Mary marr'd Smith, John, he would have the same # as her, but with a trailing "-" in the LEE file, but could be 4-bx24 in the SMITH file.  He would then be shown in the LEE file as: 6-123456-  Smith, John [Smith-4-bx24].
        If I've left anything out, or you're still confused, please contact me for more explanation. 

Jim Williams, Sr.
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