TopTenREVIEWS - Gold Award - Awarded for excellence in design, usability and feature set

Every family line is different, so the best genealogy software offers options to help you map out your family tree. For example, if you find multiple marriages, divorces, adoptions, you'll want software that can account for each of these events. Legacy 8 wins our TopTenREVIEWS Gold Award for its flexible mapping and features that allow you to record a multitude of different types of relationships. This genealogy software links directly to the popular genealogy site Ancestry.com. We like this feature because it combines your research and mapping in a few steps. Rather than digging through printed records, you can research your family online and find more information on your family line. After you've gathered family records and information, you can choose from many chart types to display the different relationships with this family tree software.

Reporting & Publishing
Compare
10/10
Legacy Family Tree
Family Tree Maker
RootsMagic
The Master Genealogist
Ancestral Quest
Family Historian
Heredis
WinFamily
Genbox Family History
Agelong Tree
10
10
9.4
9.4
8.8
8.8
9.4
8.8
7.5
7.5

Genealogy is all about discovery and sharing. When you've completed your family tree in Legacy 8, you have several ways to customize your information. To display the ancestors and children of a husband and wife, use the Family Bow Tie chart. The Descendant Chart shows how the family line progressed from one a pair of ancestors. This is a good way to check multiple branches and see how the family extends. If a common ancestor had multiple marriages, the Descendant tab is the best way to see how each branch split from this individual. You can suppress duplicate lines in wall charts to save room for more photographs and captions. Multimedia is an important factor in creating a family keepsake like a descendent or wall chart. Legacy 8 lets you add photos, videos and sound bites from members of your family.

While researching and reporting your findings, you'll want to make sure your sources are reliable. It can be easy to find a faulty source or rely heavily on a weak source, so Legacy 8 features source quality records. This feature lets you keep track of your sources and indicate what kind of sources they are. You can indicate which items are primary sources like journals, signatures and photos and which are secondary like documentation or newspaper articles about an ancestor. You can also print source labels to attach to any physical documents you collect. And when you hit a load of information, you can add up to five different citations at once with the Source Clipboard. You can also add source citations to your pedigree charts and attach the complete bibliography.

Feature Set
Compare
10/10
Legacy Family Tree
Family Tree Maker
RootsMagic
The Master Genealogist
Ancestral Quest
Family Historian
Heredis
WinFamily
Genbox Family History
Agelong Tree
10
10
8.8
9.4
8.8
8.8
8.8
8.8
8.8
7.5

Genealogy focuses on the people, places and events in a family's history. When you track a lineage over a long period, you're bound to find that your ancestors moved around. As time passes, families move and mingle, and Legacy 8 has several tools to help you untangle the locations and patterns of your ancestors. For example, there are reports about your ancestors’ origins and migrations, and the migration mapping features let you keep track of where your ancestors came from and where they were going. The Origins Report shows you the percentage of "blood" you have from your countries of origin, while the Migration Report tells you how far a person's descendants spread out in the world. Legacy animates your ancestor's movement through time in street, aerial or 3D modes with the migration-mapping tool.

Marriages, christenings, Bar Mitzvahs, weddings and funerals are all family affairs, so the Shared Events feature lets your record multiple people at one event. Other types of family tree software require you to add an event to each person's life individually. This feature cuts that virtual legwork in half. As you add more events to your ancestors' timelines, a clear picture of your family's history will begin to appear. But sometimes you'll want to focus on an individual, and the Chronology View allows you to view parents', grandparents', children's, and grandchildren's vital events in your ancestor's timeline. As the picture of your family lineage appears, you can get a closer look at how the individuals in your family connect. The Family tab is the best place to view multiple marriages and other types of relationships. You can add notes and media about individuals through this tab.

Citation & Organization
Compare
10/10
Legacy Family Tree
Family Tree Maker
RootsMagic
The Master Genealogist
Ancestral Quest
Family Historian
Heredis
WinFamily
Genbox Family History
Agelong Tree
10
9.4
9.4
9.4
9.4
9.4
8.8
8.1
7.5
6.9

Family research can become tricky. The more individuals you add to your family line, the more stories and facts you’ll need to keep straight. Legacy 8 sorts children, marriages and events automatically and chronologically as you add them. If you've ever wondered what your family's average lifespan or longest marriages were, Legacy 8 collects statistics based on the information you enter.

When you amass a large amount of information on your family, it's best to keep all your multimedia together for easy keeping. The Media Gatherer feature in Legacy 8 allows you to place your genealogy pictures in one common folder. With this tool, you'll have quick access to your files, making it easy to share your family file with another computer or family member. When you find sources and multimedia online about your family, you can link to a media gallery in Legacy 8 to organize a list of your family's online presence.

The Index and Research tabs come in handy when you build your family tree to a large size. The index allows you to access individuals quickly and displays their Reference Identification Number (RIN), sex, birth date and place, as well as their death date and place. The Research tab connects you to suggested sources and a to-do list to keep your process organized. This tab serves as a great guide for novice researchers.

Help & Support
Compare
10/10
Legacy Family Tree
Family Tree Maker
RootsMagic
The Master Genealogist
Ancestral Quest
Family Historian
Heredis
WinFamily
Genbox Family History
Agelong Tree
10
10
10
7.5
10
8.8
7.5
7.5
7.5
8.8

The Help section of the ribbon menu on Legacy 8 gives you access to quick answers about the software through a Help Index. You can also submit an order form, contact tech support or report a bug in the software. We like these features because it shows that the developers for Legacy 8 want to continue making improvements to their software and want to hear directly from the consumer.

Legacy Family Tree Summary:
10/10

If you're new to genealogy and want an easy-to-manage program to get you started on building your family tree, Legacy 8 has a wide range of tools to help you organize your information. You can list a number of complex relationships like remarriages, adoptions and divorces. The specialized charts help you visualize these relationships and help you get a better idea of where your family came from. Legacy is the best genealogy software because it offers a combination of reporting and organizing tools to help you manage your research as your family tree grows.

 
 
 

Legacy Family Tree 8.0

Pros
Legacy 8.0 is stuffed with helpful features for novice genealogists. The Origins Report shows where your family comes from and helpful mapping reports let you track where your ancestors settled through the years. The layout is clean and easy to navigate, so the interface doesn't get in the way of your work.

Cons
Experts will find that some of the sourcing and research features seem oversimplified.

The Verdict
: 10/10

Legacy 8.0 helps you organize generations of family history. Features like the Origins Report and an array of charts help you visualize your family line and share your research.

Buy Legacy Family Tree 8.0