Item Relations

To relate people, places, events, and organizations to documents and to relate documents to each other, we use the Item Relations tab.

Adding a Relation

Click on the Item Relations tab, then click on the "Add a Relation" button.

A new screen will enter where you relate the item to your document.

Types of Relations

In the "Is Related By" field, we select the kind of relationship we are describing.

Refers to a person, place, organization, event or text mentioned in an item. If the person (etc.) is not mentioned by name, but you can figure out who it is, add them. For example, if Addams refers to the President, you can relate Woodrow Wilson to the document. For Texts we will include references to articles, speeches, and letters. Don't link books, they have their own subject term.
Received by
Refers to the person or organization who received a letter. You do not need to also enter that person as "mentioned."
Member of
A person who is a member of an organization. You should not take the time to add all the organizations that a person is a member of to the database when you are entering documents. That should be done by the researchers writing the bios.
Participated in
A person or organization who participated in an event. Be judicious. We are not going to include everyone who participated in the 1912 Presidential Election as voters, but we will include the candidates.
Published in
A publication that has published a document.
Related to
A document that is related to another, but not an enclosure or a draft (often an attachment or some other cluster).
Written by
Refers to the person who wrote the item. If the person (etc.) is not mentioned by name, but you can figure out who it is, add them.

These are the current relations we are using for documents to other documents:

Draft of
Document that is an earlier version of another.
Final version of
Document that is a more final version of another.
Enclosed in
Document that is enclosed with another.
Related to
A document related to another without a clear draft or final status.
Reply to
A document that was written in response to another.

Searching and Selecting a Record

After you have selected the relationship, you will search to see if the item is already in the database.

Type the start of the item in the "By Partial title" entry box. As you type characters, a search will begin to show the results that match.

Search tips

  • If you are looking for a person, enter last name, then wait to see what is revealed. Sometimes adding a first initial helps. (ex. Davis, J)
  • If you know the number of the item you want to relate, enter the Omeka # in the "Limit Id's" box: Jane Addams is 5
  • The search doesn't like some types of punctuation, so be creative in how you search. (Ex. "House Association" will find "Hull-House Association"
  • You can limit the searches by using the "By Item Types" or "By Collection" to people, events, organizations if you are getting too many results.

Select the item you want by clicking on it. The items display by default in the reverse order that they were entered or updated, but you can click on the "Alphabetical" radio button to change that order. This is often a good tactic if you are looking for a "Nathan" or a "Julia" whose last name starts with a D, or if you need to scan a long list of names.

Once you select the item, then the "Add this Relation" button becomes active and you can finish the job by clicking on it. Note that you have to have the "Is Related by" field and a relation before you can click through.

Adding a New Relation.

After you have searched and decided that this is a new item, you can click on the "Create a New Item" button. This will open a new tab in Omeka for you to add the item. Save that record and close the window, and go back to your original document and re-run the search or press "Refresh." This will update the list of relations, and the one you just added should be at the top of the list.

When NOT to add a Relation

In rare cases we will decide not to index all or any of the names on a document. Whenever we make that decision, we will create an Editorial Note indicating that we did not index the names.

  • The document was not written by Jane Addams
  • The document is an enclosure to something sent to Jane Addams
  • The document contains a list of names, rather than a lot of names in the prose
  • There is very little likelihood that we can identify the people in the document
  • The names will likely never appear again in the edition
  • There is no close relationship with Addams' work.
  • A newspaper report of a speech lists audience members (do index other speakers or people mentioned in the speech)

Some examples:

Information Sheet on the Chicago Boys Club, 1903. - In this case an information sheet about the work of the club contained a listing of officers and the board of directors. This was an enclosure to a letter written to Addams.

Tie On Widening Plan, Nov. 27, 1906 — In this case, a clipping about the city's decision was indexed save the list at the end which detailed how each Alderman voted.

Appellate Court of Illinois, Recent Decisions, October 6, 1905 — Another enclosure about a legal decision that included an array of company names involved in legal disputes. Only personal names were indexed here.

Reasons you should not use to avoid indexing names:

  • There are too many of them
  • It is too much work
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