FAQ - When and How to use the Category for Militray Service


Q: When & how should I use the Category for Military Service?

A: Please review the following guidance.

The Military Service category is broken down into a number of sub-categories; one each for the major historical conflicts in which our ancestors may have been involved. And within each conflict category, there are further sub-categories to reflect the primary belligerent parties.
For example, the American Civil War (1861-1863) is listed as a conflict with sub-categories for both Union Forces and Confederate Forces as the primary belligerent parties.

Please note that categories automatically cascade up, so it is important only to pick the most specific category at the belligerent parties level. Please do not select conflict level categories.

Q: When may I use a Military Services category?

A: Only when there is good documentary evidence of service.

Please restrict use of this category to individuals with well documented Military Service. It is expected that the military service will be described in the Narrative section of the individual's wiki page along with source information for the period of service. Just because elder and younger brothers have documented services is not sufficient justification to categorise the middle brother.

NB Categorisation is a separate finding aid to search. If a page is categorised as "Confederate Forces" but the phase does not appear within the text of the narrative section, then the page will not be returned as part of a search for "Confederate Forces".

Q: A conflict/belligerent party isn't listed. Can it be added?

A: Yes, but only by one of the Admin team.

Many conflicts have alternate names, often reflecting the perspective of the victorious or defeated parties (American Revolutionary War -v- American War of Independence for example). It is proposed that we are guided by the primary Wikipedia articles from http://en.wikipedia.org in naming conflicts and participants. So please ensure the battle you are concerned about wasn't a specific action of a larger conflict or an alternate name for a conflict which we already have listed.

Also, we need to strike a careful balance to make sure categories remain useful. Too many categories, each with only a few wiki pages, actually detracts from the usefulness of categorisation. Presently, categories will only be created when there is a reasonable probability it might eventually contain more than ten individuals.

The Reeves surname occurs about 450 times per million names, representing about 1 in 2200 individuals. So to have a category with ten or members, we're looking at an overall population of at least 22,000 individuals (of all names) for that category. So a simple conflict with less than 40,000 combatants split between two belligerent forces is unlikely to meet the necessary threshold.

If you have a conflict with belligerent parties which you feel meets this threshold, please contact the TRP Admin team. You would greatly help us by citing the appropriate Wikipedia article and by proposing names for the belligerent parties, which will be used as the sub-categories.

Please note, it is not intended to add twentieth century conflicts, to keep the overall number manageable.

Q: When should I use the sub-categories of   "Other Conflicts"?

A: In one of two ways...

This category may be used for any individual with documented military service
  • where the conflict isn't specifically listed
  • where there is no indication of their participation in a specific conflict.
Please select the best fitting sub categories, from British Forces, American Forces and Other Forces. As with all uses of the Military Service category, please make sure the narrative for the individual adequately reflects their service and the sources. We will occasionally review this category with a view to adding additional conflicts, based on the information from the narratives.

Q: Can we have categories for individual regiments, please?

A: No, that level of detail should be reserved for the Narrative.

In general, a regiment has around 1000 members, so would not pass the test of being a population of 20,000 individuals (see explanation above). If members of an extended family served together, then the threshold of ten might be met, but this would be an exceptional case and would not justify inclusion as a category.

Contributors to this page: MartinB. .
Page last modified on Tuesday 25 of January, 2011 02:06:10 CST by MartinB..