Wednesday 8 September 2021

Saving Trove lists

Do you have a variety of Trove lists made as you research your family history? 

It is likely that you compiled these over time as new resources became available through Trove. Any newly found item added to a Trove list is always added at the end, so over time, the lists become unwieldy. There is a filter by date option, but what if you have forgotten the year in which that article appeared or you would prefer to have more control over the data in the list?

Here's a handy guide for saving and adding lists to your computer so that you can manipulate the data in a spreadsheet.

Log in to Trove and select the list to download. Decide whether to filter by date or type. Here I have chosen the whole list as it has only 51 items.

Open in Excel or equivalent spreadsheet. There are several columns that can be deleted before you begin to sort the data. The only columns to retain are:
  1. itemSequence - that is what number it is in the list
  2. itemNote - any notes made about why the item was added to the list
  3. itemThumbnailImage - more about this column later
  4. workTitle - the title of that section of the page
  5. workDate - this one will be split for sorting
  6. workPage - page number
  7. workFormat - whether it is a Family Notice, article etc

The next step

Insert three columns to the right of workDate.
Choose the Data tab, highlight the workDate column then Text to Columns

Follow the wizard, choose Delimited

choose delimited

On the next screen choose space.

choose space

This displays how the data will be distributed in the blank columns you previously added. On the final wizard screen, leave the choice as General then words will remain as text and numerals will be formatted as number data.

Change the column headers to match the newly created columns. Day, Date, Month Year.
Save, then highlight the whole spreadsheet. From the Data tab choose Sort.

Add the Month column next and choose Custom list to see the built-in Custom lists.

Add another level for Date so the final sort screen shows as below.

The data now displays in date order as it was published.

One final step to make this spreadsheet useful. 
The links in the column titled itemThumbnailImage only display a thumbnail of the page. 
  1. Highlight the column
  2. CTRL-F to Find -t then leave the Replace field blank. 
This will remove the thumbnail so that the link will redirect to the full page where the article is located.

Now one has a useable timeline of all the articles saved for that family complete with the notes made about the article at the time.

Have you downloaded any of your Trove lists since the upgrade last June?

This post first appeared on

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