Solved

Using dates prior to 1900 in Excel

Posted on 2014-10-16
7
113 Views
Last Modified: 2014-10-30
Hello,

Since the Windows date system begins with # 1 on January 1, 1900, can negative numbers be used for dates in the 1800's and earlier? If not, is there a workaround or add-on which enables earlier dates to be used in Excel charts & formulas, etc?

I began adding 2000 to all years whenever dates prior to 1900 are present in a range of values. Then, I would just need to remember to subtract 2000 whenever the date was to be displayed. I think that's accurate considering the rules for leap year but doing that is a couple of extra steps and it would be nice if there is a simpler way to handle that situation.

Thanks
0
Comment
Question by:WeThotUWasAToad
[X]
Welcome to Experts Exchange

Add your voice to the tech community where 5M+ people just like you are talking about what matters.

  • Help others & share knowledge
  • Earn cash & points
  • Learn & ask questions
7 Comments
 
LVL 81

Accepted Solution

by:
byundt earned 250 total points
ID: 40385990
VBA will support negative numbers as dates, but Excel worksheets will not.

Your workaround of adding 200 years is fine, as long as you take note of the fact that Excel worksheet recognizes February 29, 1900 as a Leap Day (to be compatible with Lotus 123), while VBA knows that there is no Leap Day that year.

Entertaining story describing the origin of VBA in Excel. Of particular note is the discussion on dates.
0
 
LVL 26

Assisted Solution

by:ProfessorJimJam
ProfessorJimJam earned 250 total points
ID: 40386241
@WeThotUWasAToad

there is a free add-in by John Walkenbach that solves your problem, check the link below.


http://j-walk.com/ss/excel/files/xdate.htm
0
 
LVL 24

Expert Comment

by:Phillip Burton
ID: 40386341
Generally, you should only increment in groups of 28 years. That's because, with the leap days, if 1 January 2000 is a Saturday (which it is), then so will 1 January 2028, and 1 January 2056. You can't guarantee it if you don't jump to the similar cycle in the future.

Just to add to byundt's point, February 29, 1900 did not in fact exist, so VBA is right and Excel is wrong.
0
PeopleSoft Has Never Been Easier

PeopleSoft Adoption Made Smooth & Simple!

On-The-Job Training Is made Intuitive & Easy With WalkMe's On-Screen Guidance Tool.  Claim Your Free WalkMe Account Now

 
LVL 33

Expert Comment

by:Rob Henson
ID: 40386411
There was no 29 Feb 2000 either.

As you are no doubt aware, leap years occur every 4 years except for centenary years.

The addition of a day every 4 years would add 25 days per century but the movement of the planets only needs 24, hence no leap year in centenary years.

Thanks
Rob
0
 
LVL 24

Expert Comment

by:Phillip Burton
ID: 40386461
You need a new 2000 calendar - There was a 29 Feb 2000!

The movement on the planets actually needs about 24.25, so there is a leap day every 400 years.
0
 
LVL 33

Expert Comment

by:Rob Henson
ID: 40386478
Indeed there was, apologies I rearranged what I was writing and ended up writing it wrong.

Thanks for the correction.
0
 

Author Closing Comment

by:WeThotUWasAToad
ID: 40414287
Thanks for the insights & suggestions.
0

Featured Post

Technology Partners: We Want Your Opinion!

We value your feedback.

Take our survey and automatically be enter to win anyone of the following:
Yeti Cooler, Amazon eGift Card, and Movie eGift Card!

Question has a verified solution.

If you are experiencing a similar issue, please ask a related question

Convert between Excel file formats (.XLS, .XLSX, .XLSM) with/without macro option David Miller (dlmille) Intro Over this past Fall, I've had the opportunity to see several similar requests and have developed a couple related solutions associate…
Workbook link problems after copying tabs to a new workbook? David Miller (dlmille) Intro Have you either copied sheets to a new workbook, and after having saved and opened that workbook, you find that there are links back to the original sou…
The viewer will learn how to create two correlated normally distributed random variables in Excel, use a normal distribution to simulate the return on different levels of investment in each of the two funds over a period of ten years, and, create a …
This Micro Tutorial demonstrates how to create Excel charts: column, area, line, bar, and scatter charts. Formatting tips are provided as well.

734 members asked questions and received personalized solutions in the past 7 days.

Join the community of 500,000 technology professionals and ask your questions.

Join & Ask a Question