FHS - Sample Reports and Charts

When the Family History System was first made available for public use, it could produce three types of reports (Family Group, Ancestor Report and Descendant Report), and a single style of chart (4 Gen Ancestor Chart). Over the years, the reporting capability of FHS has been enhanced to the point that it now has 40 separate report and chart types with options that provide hundreds of variations. Rather than try to describe here the various types of FHS output, I am providing sample pages from many of the reports and charts for you to see for yourself.

Reports which present detail information from a family file are of two different styles: "Fixed Format", in which information has an assigned location in the report, and "Free Format" in which information is presented in a "paragraph" style. Fixed Format reports require a fixed minimum number of print positions for each line depending on the types of information included in the report and typically require a compressed character size for printing on standard size forms. The free format style adjusts to the number of printable characters on a line and allows using larger character sizes.

The following sample reports and charts are grouped by function. First are the "Family Group" Reports which are used to show information in the file concerning an individual. These are followed by the "Relationship Reports" which are designed to help display information about related groups of individuals. The third group of "Lists" provide detail information for selected records in ID sequence.

Family Group Reports

"Family Group" reports or worksheets are probably the most important working documents for genealogists. They are used to record information about a "Family Unit" and are frequently organized by the "head" of the family unit or by a code number that is assigned to the family unit. Although the FHS Group Reports are styled after the traditional Family Group Report, it might be more appropriate to call them "Individual Information Reports" as they are intended to present all information in a family file concerning a single individual, called the SUBJECT of the report. This might include information about several family units in which the subject of the report has participated as one of the Heads of Family.

Relationship Reports and Charts

There are several approaches to the study of Family History. Some prefer to concentrate on their own or another's ancestry, attempting to locate all persons from whom the Key individual has a direct line of descent. Others attempt to identify all descendants of a single important or Key individual, while still others are intent upon finding all individuals to whom they are related in any manner...that is they are attempting to find all descendants of any of their ancestors. The Family History System includes reports and charts which are designed to assist in each of these efforts.

(Note: Typewriter symbols are used to draw the lines in the printed charts to accomodate browsers that may not include the standard box drawing symbols in their supported character set.)


The grouping of descendants in a Descendant Report can be done in two different ways. That is, they can either be grouped by generations or they can be grouped by families. The latter grouping will list all of the children of a descendant before listing the next younger sibling of the descendant. RELATIVES
The Relative Report combines the Descendant Reports for each Ancestor of an individual into a single report. If an individual appears in an earlier descendant report, then a "backward reference" appears in the relationship column in the format ">5 24" meaning the next earlier reference to the same individual can be found on page 5, line 24. The individual's descendants (if any) will be shown only for the first appearance of the individual in the report.

Register Reports

The FHS Register Report is actually a specially formatted "Merged Free Format Group Report" which uses conventions that are commonly employed in family publications. The following samples show the three styles of Register reports that can be produced by FHS.

Lists of Selected Records

The Search/Select/LIST program, which had previously been provided as an extended option to registered users, became a part of the publicly distributed version of FHS in the 1997 update. This allows you to print lists of detail information about selected records in your family file. The selection criteria can be based upon relationships or upon conditions placed on individual names, birth/death dates and places. In the public version of the software, these lists must be in ID number sequence, but the use of index files in the extended system allows printing the lists in sorted sequence (e.g. Surname, Birth date, etc.) These lists can be printed in the same styles as the Ancestor, Descendant and Relative reports: Fixed Format (columnar), free format, and timeline.