Jerripedia aims to present as wide and comprehensive a view of the history of Jersey and its families as possible.
It does this in three ways:
- The creation of new, summary articles on a wide range of topics
- Internal links to more detailed articles, written specially for the site or already published
- External links to articles on other websites
For convenience and ease of use, articles will, by preference, be included within Jerripedia, rather than using internal links, but copyright considerations and time constraints mean that a large number of external links are required. In due course more and more subjects will be covered within Jerripedia's pages, although external links to further articles on the same subject will be retained, to give site users the maximum amount of information possible on subjects which interest them.
Permission to use material believed to be under copyright has been sought and obtained wherever possible. Anyone who believes that Jerripedia has infringed their copyright is asked to please contact us by following our Copyright instructions.
As more source material is unearthed it will be added to the site, even though it may duplicate existing material. Where conflicts are identified between two or more sources, we will attempt to resolve those conflicts, but they will be highlighted within articles, leaving site users to reach their own conclusions, and perhaps make a contribution of their own if they have a particular interest in a subject. It is not Jerripedia's objective to resolve conflicts between 'warring' historians; merely to point out that differenht views exist on a number of topics.
Corrections will be made to any inaccurate material when drawn to the administrators' attention. While site users are welcome (indeed, encouraged) to correct any spelling and typographical errors they encounter (hopefully these will be few and far between), any factual errors or conflicts with the results of their own research which they identify should initially become the subject of a discussion (using the 'Discussion' tab at the top of the page in question).
Jerripedia articles can be contributed and edited by any site user. With the exception of a few 'high level' menu pages, existing articles can be edited simply by clicking on the edit tab at the top of the page, adding or substituting text exactly as you would in word processing software, and saving your changes. The history tab allows anyone to see what changes have been made to the article and compare versions as the page develops over time. You can add a new page by creating a link within the appropriate existing page and saving your change. Clicking on the link will then open the new page and you can enter whatever you want. There are no hard and fast rules about what you can enter and the style of writing, but in order to allow Jerripedia to develop along structured lines and to fulfil its objectives, there are some guidelines which contributors should attempt to follow.
Site administrators reserve the right to edit new contributions so that they conform more closely to these guidelines, which are designed to make the site as easy to follow and its content as easy to understand as possible.
Jerripedia is fundamentally a history site, but history starts yesterday, so the scope for content is virtually unlimited. However, the historical element is important, as is the bias towards family history. Jerripedia users are interested in everything to do with the history of Jersey and the people who live, and lived, in the island; and particularly in their ancestors.
Anyone wishing to add a significant amount of new content to Jerripedia, and particularly when starting a new theme, is encouraged to study the menu structure and to decide where best that content would fit in with everything already on the site. If you are in any doubt, please leave a message in the Have Your Say section to that one of the site administrators can give you advice on how to structure the new content.
This site is an English language site and there are no plans at present to offer translations in other languages. However, much of the content refers to an era when the official language of Jersey was French, and the vast majority of its inhabitants spoke Jerriais as their first, or only, language. Many spoke no English at all until well into the 19th Century, and the work of Jersey's government and judiciary was conducted in French until early in the 20th century. The situation is complicated still further by the fact that the earliest documents available to island historians were written in Latin, and various translations have been made over the years into English or French.
In order to provide a degree of uniformity across Jerripedia articles, particularly for those who are not familiar with the names of island officials and the terminology of a unique island, the terms currently in use today are favoured. So you will find Bailiff rather than Bailli or Bailly, Constable rather than Connétable, whereas ''seigneur'' and ''fief'' have remained unchanged.
Attempts have been made by some historians and genealogists, most notably J Bertram Payne in his Armorial to "update" the personal names in use in the island over the centuries. But French-speaking families called their sons Guillaume, Jean, Edouard and Josue: not William, John, Edward and Joseph; and their daughters Jeanne, Sara, Susanne and Marie: not Jean, Sarah, Susan and Mary. These are the names which should be used in family trees in Jerripedia, certainly until about the middle of the 18th Century. Inevitably some individuals will appear with English rather than French names, when the trees are generated automatically by users' family tree software. Hopefully these issues will be ironed out as further users contribute to existing trees and correct the spelling of personal names when they are aware of errors.
Dates are a big problem for historians. The timing of major events in our history, such as the Battle of Jersey, is well known. But the further back in time we go, the less certain we can be about the century, much less the year, month and day, when events happened. Access to birth certificates enables us to be certain about when our more recent ancestors were born; church baptismal records for the 17th-19th centuries are very helpful, but introduce a degree of uncertainty. Earlier records may be even less accurate. So most early dates should, perhaps, be shown as "c", "circa", "abt" or "about". However, if it is accepted that all early dates are approximations to a lesser or greater degree, it seems pointless to litter articles with unnecessary information. Where full dates are known, they should ideally be expressed in the style 15 June 1753. Unless otherwise stated, dates prior to 1752, when the start of the year moved from 25 March to 1 January, should be expressed as if that change was already in effect. So 31 December 1700 is followed by 1 January 1701, not by 1 January 1700.
Eliminate surplus information
A page on a computer screen contains only a limited amount of information. The simple design of Jerripedia using the MediaWiki software helps present the information in an easily read and understood format. Contributors can help by eliminating unnecessary information. There is no need to indicate in a family tree that individuals were born in "Trinity, Jersey, Channel Islands" when Trinity on its own will be well understood in the context of a site about Jersey.
Be very careful when inserting links - either internal or external - in an article. There is nothing more frustrating for the user than a link which takes them nowhere. It is easy when previewing your pages to see whether links work (they show as blue text) or go nowhere (they show as red text). It is tempting to add a number of links to an article with the intention of returning later to complete the relevant pages. But sometimes these intentions are never fulfilled. Unless you know that you will be completing the linked page immediately (or in the very near future) it is better not to insert a link.
Many links were put in place contrary to this rule during the early days of the creation of Jerripedia and efforts are now being made either to complete the link pages or remove the links.