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USGW Census Project

CART File Management

Exporting a File
Importing a File

You should create and keep a "backup" copy of your CART census transcription file. We advise you to keep this backup updated.

You will also need to learn how to export the CART transcribed data file. If you are a new volunteer to the Census Project, your State Coordinator may request a spot check of your work after a few hundred entries. After you have completed the transcription, you will export the file to send to your proofreader. When the proofreader has finished his/her work and you have made any needed corrections to your trancription, you will export the file again and submit it to the USGenWeb Census Project.


Export your CART census information to a file - - and then you can attach the exported file to an email message for submitting your transcribed file to the USGenWeb Census Project, or for sending your file to your proofreader.

  • To export a file from CART you need to get to the main-menu.

    •  If you are already in CART finishing a census file,
               click the [Close] button to get to the main-menu.

    • If you are just opening CART,
               click the [Cancel] button to close the 
               "Open Census Abstract" dialog-box.

  • From the main-menu in CART, click on "Export".

  • From the drop-down menu, click on "DBF".

  • If the Census file you want to export is not highlighted in the "Choose Census" list, click to highlight it, then click the [Export] button.

  • On the "Location to save export file" dialog-box - - - the name of the exported file will be right underneath the "File name:" box, and the subdirectory where the file will be exported to is right underneath "Folder". 
    Note:  Write the file name and subdirectory information on a piece of paper so you will have it when you later need to attach the file to an email message.

    • If for some reason you want to change the subdirectory where the file will be exported to, click in the folders box to navigate to the subdirectory where you want the file to be saved.

  • Click the [OK] button to start the Export process.

  • After the export is complete a message box will display "Census Exported", click the [OK] button on the message-box.

Following the above instructions will create a copy of your census file and the exported file will have the file-type (also known as "extension") of .DBF

If you are submitting a copy of your file to the USGenWeb Census Project, or sending a copy to your proofreader, you can send an email message and attach the .DBF file to the email message.

IMPORTING a file into CART

If you have a .DBF file and you want to get that file into CART, you go through an IMPORT process.

  • To import a file into CART you need to get to the main-menu.

  • From the main-menu in CART, click "Import".

  • On the drop-down list, click "DBF"

  • In the "Folders:" area, navigate to the subdirectory that contains your .DBF file.

  • In the "File name:" box on the left, click to highlight the .DBF file.

  • Click the [OK] button.

  • On the "Import Census Abstract" dialog-box, click the [Import] button.  

    • Note:  If the file you are importing is only part of a county, you might want to fill-in the "Split County Name (Optional):" field.  

  • On the "Import Census Abstract" message-box, click the [Yes] button.  

    • Note: If a message-box appears with "ST, County, Year already exists.  Overwrite?" - - if you click the [Yes] box, it will replace the same-named ST/County/Year you already have in your CART with this new version of that census.  If you click the [No] button, it will cancel the import process.  (If you want a second file for the same St/County/Year to be in your CART, you will need to use the "Split County Name" field to keep it from overwriting the current copy of the census.)

  • After the import process finishes a message-box will appear with "Import Complete" - - click the [OK] button.

  • The new imported census file will now be available on the "Census Abstract", Open, Open Census Abstract dialog-box.

Making a BACKUP Copy of your Census File

A lot of your hard work and time go into transcribing your census records and creating a backup after you are done entering records for the day is a very good safety precaution.   Creating a backup copy of your census file is something you should be doing on a regular basis.  

CART is a database program, and the records for individual counties (or split parts of a county) for which  you have created abstracts - - are all stored together in the database.  The database file is named cartdata.mdb.  Each individual county (or split part of a county) can be exported from the database to create a separate .DBF file.

The cartdata.mdb file will be in the c:\cart  subdirectory on your hard drive.  The exported .DBF files will be in whatever directory you selected during the export process.

Use your File Manager (Explore on Windows95/98) to copy the exported .DBF file and/or the cartdata.mdb to diskette.  If the file is too large to fit on diskette, use zipping software to zip the file.

If you ever need to get a copy of a .DBF file back into CART, you can IMPORT it.  If you ever need to use the backup of the entire database (the cartdata.mdb file), you can rename the current c:\cartdata.mdb file to another name, and simply copy the backup file cartdata.mdb back into the c:\cart subdirectory.

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