This Webtrees New User Guide will help new users and new members navigate a Webtrees Family Tree website and find their way around. We will keep this information as simple as we can, but more detailed information can be found in more advanced areas of the Webtrees Manual.
Webtrees New User Guide
The first thing you should be aware of is that no two Webtrees sites are the same. Almost every aspect of the site can be made visible or invisible by the site administrator. Don’t worry if you see things listed in this guide that you can’t see on your own Webtrees site.
The second thing you should be aware of is that members of the family who have registered, and who are logged in on the site, will be able to view different things to users who are not registered and logged in. We have split this Webtrees New User Guide has two sections. The first section is for site visitors, and the second section is for members who are logged in.
The third thing you should be aware of is that Webtrees fully complies with the GEDCOM standard. GEDCOM is the internationally recognised format for family tree creation.
New Site Visitors
There are two main sources of information about your own Webtrees Family Tree site.
- In the menu at the top of the page, you may find a question mark or another indication that there is a FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) page.
- At the bottom of your Webtrees Family Tree site, you may find a link to the contact form for the site administrator.
The main Webtrees Menu will differ from site to site, but the two most important menu items for new users are ‘Charts‘ and ‘Lists‘.
The Manager or Administrator of the family tree will have chosen the default individual for your family tree, and it will be the chart of this default individual which will be visible to you.
The descendants’ chart shows the default person, and their children, grandchildren, etc. The ancestors chart shows the default person, their parents, grandparent, etc. The fan chart shows the default person, their children, grandchildren, parents and grandparents, etc.
Clicking on the name of anyone listed on any of these charts takes you to the page for that individual.
The most useful lists for new users are the Individual List and families list.
Clicking on the Individuals List displays letters of the alphabet, and clicking on the letter displays the surname of any individual on the family tree whose last name commences with that letter. Clicking on the surname displays a list of every individual with that surname, and clicking on the name of an individual takes you to their individual record.
Clicking on the Families List item displays letters of the alphabet, and clicking on a letter displays the surname of anyone on the website whose last name commences with that letter. Clicking on the surname displays a list of every family with that surname and clicking on the name on any person takes you to their individual record.
Individual records have several tabs at the top of the record, and the Manager or Administrator of your family tree will have chosen which tab opens by default, and which tabs are visible. The most useful for most new users on most Webtrees sites are probably the ‘Facts and Events‘ tab and the ‘Families‘ tab.
The Facts and Events page provides a list of all the facts known about the individual, and this may include where and when they were born, where and when they were married, where and when they died, etc.
The Families tab displays the parents of the individual, and any brothers or sisters (first family). If the individual has been married it will then show their spouse, and any children (second family). If their spouse dies, or if the couple divorces, the individual may remarry. If so, their new spouse and any children will also be displayed (subsequent families), etc.
When you are viewing the record of an individual and then click on the main menu, the charts and lists will then be the charts and lists of the person you are viewing, not the default person.
New Family Members
Family members who have registered and logged in find the default charts and lists have changed from the default chosen by the manager or administrator, and will show the charts and lists most relevant to themselves. In addition, on the top menu, there will be an additional ‘My pages‘ link taking them to their own individual record and their own page of useful information.
New Members are able to progress to become Editors (which allows them to add or edit records), Moderators, Managers or Administrators.