New U.S. History Perspective Event Sets for Reunion for Mac

Don, a member of the GenealogyTools community, mentioned to me that the North American history perspective event set available on the Reunion website hasn’t been updated in years. I took on the task of making an updated perspective event set available for you to use in Reunion for Mac.

Background on Perspective Events

Perspective events are a feature of the Mac genealogy software, Reunion for Mac. They are brief descriptions of historical events that provide context to your ancestor’s lives in timeline charts and ages lists. They consist of a textual description of the event and can include date and or place information.

Sets of perspective events may be saved in a file for later reuse or sharing. It’s simple to create your own perspective event sets for Reunion. An event set is a plain text file or RTF formatted file with each event on a separate line, date first, followed by a tab and the text of the event. The file’s extension is .pEvents. It must be located in your ~/Library/Application Support/Reunion/Perspective Events/ folder.

How I Updated the Perspective Event Set

I discovered Wikipedia has fairly complete timelines of historical events and they’re freely available under the Creative Commons license. I started with the 1970 to 1989 United States history timeline. I edited the entries for length, added more precise dates to some events, and added locations as appropriate. I removed some events too, but wanted to err on the side of including more rather than less. You can remove the ones you don’t want. I followed the same steps for the 1990 to present timeline.

These were each long lists relative to the existing North American History list because the latter only contains events of great national importance. I copied the events that I thought met this criteria into a copy of the North American History perspective event file.

How To Get the Perspective Event Sets

I put the three files (1970 to 1989, 1990 to present, and North American History) into an archive along with an updated copy of the Michigan History event set I published in 2008. Here’s the link to download the GenealogyTools Reunion for Mac Perspective Event Archive for your own use. Extract the files from the archive then copy the .pEvents files into the Perspective Events folder as described above.

You can easily load perspective event sets into a timeline chart or an load perspective events sets into an ages list. This makes adding multiple perspective events quick and easy.

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