As you enter information about people into the RootsMagic Essentials application, it's critical that you cite your data sources. Most genealogical software programs, including RootsMagic, allow you to enter source information. For specific instructions on how to enter info in your particular software, see the Help file or user's manual that comes with the software. In RootsMagic, you add sources through the Edit Person box.

To add a source for your information, follow these steps:

  1. From the Pedigree chart, double-click the person that the source references.

    In this example, you have the source documents for the marriage of Samuel and Martha. So for this example, double-click Samuel Clayton Abell Jr. The Edit Person box appears.

  2. Select the fact or event that you want to source.

    Select the marriage fact in the left side of the box.

  3. Click the Sources button in the lower-right side of the box.

    The Citation Manager opens for the marriage fact.

  4. Select Add New Source.

    The Select Source Type box appears.

  5. Select from the list of source types.

    In this case, search for the source type Marriage and then select one of the results — Marriage Record (Bound Volumes). If you can't find an existing source type to fit your need, select Free Form and enter your own source type.

  6. Click OK.

    Enter details about the source of your information. You should complete as many of the fields as you can for every source.

  7. Complete the Edit Source fields and click OK.

    You should now see a check mark under the Source icon in the Edit Person box.

You may have already noticed another way to get to the Source Manager. Choose Lists→Source List, click the Add a New Source button, and follow the preceding steps. This enables you to add a source that's not necessarily tied to one specific event in that person's life.

If your ancestor kept a diary or memoirs of sorts, you might prefer to use this method of citing sources. Similarly, you have functionality to add sources that pertain to more than one person (called Family Sources in the drop-down list accessible from the Sources icon).

After you've used RootsMagic Essentials for a while, you may find that you need more features. You can compare the features between RootsMagic and RootsMagic Essentials to determine whether you need an upgrade.