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The GNIS import of "populated places" left my city peppered with "hamlets" with cute names such as Kathryn and Frances that may have existed in the 1970-1980s when they were added to GNIS (see record for Kathryn). My city has been growing since it was incorporated in 1971 and these hamlets are now gone, replaced by the newly drawn, master-planned "villages" with flowery names such Northwood, Woodbury and Stonegate, which don't share boundaries or any other features with the historic hamlets, and which I am in the process of mapping.

Since OSM purports to describe "what's there", should I be deleting these hamlets (and maybe other features imported from GNIS) that no longer exist and are not used for identification, reference or any other useful purpose that I can think of?

I don't mind leaving them alone for historic purposes, but I don't want them showing up as "places" on various renders of my area. That causes nothing but confusion. Should I maybe retag them?

asked 16 Feb '11, 02:04

ponzu's gravatar image

ponzu
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edited 16 Feb '11, 22:17


If they're no longer referred to, delete them.

If people occasionally refer to the place by its old name, then feel free to tag a place node with 'old_name=Kathryn and Frances' or similar.

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answered 16 Feb '11, 09:11

Richard's gravatar image

Richard ♦
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They certainly are no longer referred to except in books on the history of California names (and now I know who Kathryn and Frances were!). I don't know if I am doing a bad thing, but I am leaving these nodes, only removing the place=hamlet tag and adding a ref=* tag where I enter the reason this node had been created and the reason I "de-placed" it. I don't like destroying history (but I don't mind altering it).

(16 Feb '11, 19:56) ponzu

Please don't use ref=* for this purpose -- this tag is used for reference numbers or codes that some features have. Use note=* instead.

(16 Feb '11, 19:57) Jonathan Ben...

Right. Thanks.

(16 Feb '11, 22:10) ponzu
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if the features are not there anymore, please do not hesitate and do delete them. the map is about what is on the ground now, not was has been there some time. having a place on the map that used to be there but is not anymore is a map error - it confuses map users. and don't worry about deleting things - the database keeps history, so if you do something wrong, it can still be recovered.

if a place has only changed name, using "old_name" is a reasonable suggestion.

(17 Feb '11, 00:44) axk
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question asked: 16 Feb '11, 02:04

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last updated: 17 Feb '11, 00:44

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