In my Ancestry.com.au family tree there are an unknown number of Unknown relationships that should be Biological relationships.

I often spot them when I am on a profile page like below:

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These are errors and I do not know how they were introduced into my tree. They are easily fixed using the Edit > Edit Relationships button to turn them to Biological but they mess up other Ancestry functionality like ThruLines.

Is there any way to search for Unknown relationships in an Ancestry tree?

I am hoping for an Ancestry.com solution, but I also have Family Tree Maker 2017.

  • Are you working only on Ancestry itself? What other utilities do you have?
    – Jan Murphy
    Oct 25 '19 at 21:31
  • 1
    @JanMurphy I'm hoping for an Ancestry.com solution, but I also have Family Tree Maker 2017.
    – PolyGeo
    Oct 25 '19 at 22:20
  • I noticed you have Ancestry Family Trees in your source list. I generally don't copy people from other trees unless I'm transferring someone from another tree I own or have been given access to. Do the relationship settings transfer along with the copied person?
    – Jan Murphy
    Oct 25 '19 at 23:10
  • 1
    @JanMurphy I confess to transferring people from other trees, then checking that information as best I can, but I don't think that's the cause for these Unknown relationships that I started to notice just before I wrote genealogy.stackexchange.com/q/15668/19. Many of the people with them were relatively recent direct ancestors and their offspring, and I am confident that I would have noticed them missing from ThruLines sooner, if they had been missing.
    – PolyGeo
    Oct 26 '19 at 3:16
  • My comment was meant to indicate the low frequency and my lack of experience with copying.
    – Jan Murphy
    Oct 26 '19 at 4:26

I had the same question today, and figured out an answer. It involves the raw GEDCOM file, but it is possible.

  • Step 1: Export your raw GEDCOM file from Ancestry.
    • Tree Settings
    • Tree Info Page
    • Manage your Tree section
    • Export Tree
    • (When ready) download
  • Step 2: Open the GEDCOM in a text editor like Notepad++
  • Step 3: Search for "REL UNKNOWN". Here is an example from my GEDCOM:
    • The text below stands for Family 15 with with husband 56 and wife 75 has a Child 77 who has a natural relationship with the Father and an unknown Relationship with the mother
0 @F15@ FAM 
1 HUSB @P56@
1 WIFE @P75@
1 CHIL @P77@
2 _FREL Natural
2 _MREL Unknown
  • Step 4: Search for the child: @P77@
    • You will find multiple places where @P77@ exists, but you are looking for the individual record.
0 @P77@ INDI 
  • Step 5: Scroll down from the individual record until you find their name
1 NAME John John Johnson
  • Step 6: Go back to this person in Ancestry.com and fix the relationship

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