Monday, June 30, 2008

Adventures in FamilySearch Indexing - Week 49

I was dragging again Sunday so I didn't work on FamilySearch Indexing then. Monday is good enough. I took a long four hour nap today so hopefully I am replenishing my batteries. Work is hectic because we lost an employee in our department and it was small to begin with. In little companies everyone has a specific job and it's hard to loose someone even for a day. Hopefully they will get a new person hired soon and take some of the stress off us. For now I am trying to take it slow after work so I don't exhaust myself again.

FamilySearch Indexing is relaxing for me so I never mind doing that. It's the writing of the article afterwards that takes effort. Boy, do I need a proof-reader!

This past week the Ancestry Insider had an interesting article "FamilySearch Clearing Out Inactive Indexers". It appears that if you haven't indexed in the past 9 months, or if your new and haven't signed in in 3 months they are removing your account today. I never did receive that email, but then again I'm not an inactive indexer either. It will be interesting to see how many numbers we drop for total indexers after the dead wood is cleaned out. As of May 6, 2008 we had 140,000 registered users.

I am still working on the Louisiana 1850-1954 Death Certificates. I indexed 2 batches or 37 individuals tonight. Since finishing my Irish records I haven't been doing as many in a month. This month I only indexed 139. I'm not sure exactly my total for the months before. My total to date is 7,763. There sure is more to index on the death records though. I guess every bit helps.

The first record I worked on was for a little 2 year old boy that must of died at home because there was no physician. He had a bad cold and fever. How sad. It was in 1923 and I found many in that batch that had no physician. People must of been still doctoring their sick at home then. It was also in my first batch that I found my first murder victim. Their head was crushed with a blunt instrument. I know that sounds gross but then I had to run and tell my kids what I found. We were all fascinated by the death certificate.

I must of been to morbid because in my second batch I indexed a homicide and suicide. The husband killed his wife in the grocery store before killing himself. The death certificate was from 1948 and much more detailed than the 1923 certificates. I won't go into the details but now I have seen everything. I guess you never know what you will index!

In that same batch I did come across two infant girls death certificates that gave their given names as "b. of Estine" and "b. of Mary Virginia". I have never come across that before. I noticed that the mothers were named Estine and Mary Virginia so I assuming they were un-named children. Could the "b" stand for birth? I would be interested to hear what the "b" stood for.

The last person I indexed was killed after being struck by a passing car. Again way to much detail on the cause of death. I know we don't have to look at that while indexing but I just can't help myself. Though I did decide I had enough death certificates for one night. So much for a relaxing evening working on FamilySearch Indexing!

See ya tomorrow, for tomorrow is always another genealogy day!

Saturday, June 28, 2008

New FamilySearch Tree Sagas - Week 7

It's Saturday and once again I am struggling to motivate myself to work in New FamilySearch. I don't know what the deal is but I really want to develop this habit. As fate would have it I am not feeling well today. I think my body is just worn out from driving my husband to work in Salt Lake this week. I had to leave every afternoon when I normally take my four hour nap each day. (I have fibromyalgia) Then I would have to go pick him up and leave the house around 10:30pm. Making bedtime about midnight, which is not good when you get up early in the morning to go to work. After a week of this I couldn't get out of bed today until 3:30pm, well into the afternoon. Thank goodness the only thing on my plate today was to work in NFS.

On June 13th I put in a request to claim my father's (who is still living) legacy contribution. It only took 6 days to have this request honored. I was rather impressed on how fast a turn around that was. So this is my first time working on my father's side of the family.

My grandfather Marshall Harris has two different birth dates in my personal genealogy database. I was curious to see who add which dates. Was it me or my father? I have sources in my genealogy database but on some early records I typed them from my father's group sheets and wasn't sure if I had made a transcription error on the dates. I could see that somewhere along the line my father had submitted two different birth dates to the Church on his father. So it would depend on which of my father's family group sheets I got the wrong information from.

I think I finally have which date is correct so I was able to make my first dispute on NFS. Before I made the dispute I made sure that I had all duplicates of my grandfather combined. This made me realize that I do have close extended family members that are members of the Church. How could I of forgotten the Kubricky family? My second cousins, and my father's first cousin. Someone on that side of the family is submitting names for temple work. Could the "J" stand for my second cousin Jill? I know her sister Betsey's husband Ryan is interested in genealogy and we have spoken many times about the common line. I feel so stupid that I forget this family and how much they will be able to add to the help in working on combining duplicates on NFS. It gives me hope!

Anyways about the dispute. After I corrected all the locality names I was able to narrow down just the submission that my father and I have made. I then placed my dispute on the wrong date for my grandfather and gave an explanation of why I thought it was incorrect. I also put an explanation on the correct date and gave an explanation there. The other instances of the incorrect date were from Temple records or my cousin JKubricky. I left that instance alone so it will allow them to correct it if they so desire later.

It is amazing how quickly incorrect information can duplicate among a group of people. Just one typing error and someone can be born on a different day, month or year. Maybe now with NFS our two families will finally have the correct birth date showing for my grandfather. With leaving my own data disputed and showing the incorrect date as wrong others that might have carried on this incorrect information will be able to see the error too. The dispute feature on NFS is a great feature if you use it correctly.

I read this advise about disputing on a mailing list:
In the training I received in Salt Lake we were told not to do disputes because the original submitter can't change the information until all the disputes are removed. We were told to add another opinion instead, saves a lot of work for everyone later on.
That said I can't see anything wrong in disputing your own information so you can let others see which family falsehood or traditions are in error. Then it will stop anyone from adding the wrong information into the program. We should read the notes on the facts before adding a bunch of disputes or new information. It just might let us know our information could be wrong. Disputing correctly dispels errors.

What if you want to dispute a person in the family. Here is what one mailing list member mentioned about that.
I wish there was a list of "don't do's this will cause problems for engineers" ... I just learned we should not dispute an individual unless we are ABSOLUTELY SURE they don't exist. If they are in our family and don't belong ... we should dispute the relationship.
I haven't run into that problem yet but I am glad for the heads up and I am passing it along to you.

Now that I realize I have cousins with information on NFS it almost makes me want to add them as living people. This issue of adding living people to NFS has been discussed on the message board recently. This is the advice on this subject.
The official policy is that we not add living individuals to the new FamilySearch except as necessary to bridge ourselves to our deceased ancestors.

Go to (legacy), select "product support" on the blue bar at the top of the page, and in the "Ask a question" window [ ] enter [add living]. The first document returned states:
- - -
Document ID: 103436: "The effects of adding living individuals to the new FamilySearch and why we shouldn't do it."

Problem: I added my living sister to the new FamilySearch, and now it shows that her ordinances need to be done. I've added living siblings to new FamilySearch twice and can't combine them. I get a read-only or restricted error.

New FamilySearch is a program created to bless the dead. The only time living individuals should be added is as a bridge to your first generation of deceased ancestors, if necessary. For privacy reasons, submitted information about living individuals will only be seen by the submitter, and it will often be a duplicate of records that are already contained in the new familysearch database. Please keep the data about your living family in your genealogy management program on your own computer.
That is excellent advice so I didn't add my cousins and link us all together. I already do have them in my personal genealogy database.

I moved from my grandfather's birth information to his death information once again there was inaccurate information. I don't know why my father put that his dad died in Queensbury, Warren, NY when he died in the Glens Falls Hospital in Glens Falls. I fixed the contributions from myself and my father's information. Which is showing with my name on it. I was able to fix this error and make a note of where he died. My cousins information is incorrect but I am hoping they will look into the note I placed under the right locality name and then correct theirs. Of course my cousins received their incorrect information from my father to being with.

I am so glad I waited until I had the ability to claim and then edit my father's legacy contribution. There was much to correct. The details look rather messy on my grandfather because of all the various dates and locality names. Some of which I can't correct. I am so glad I could set the summary screen for him with all the accurate information.

I was almost going to jump over the screen on my grandfather's record for spouse and children. I figured since all of my father's sibling are living and not members of the Church their information would not be there. I was surprise to find them all there. It must be because both my father and I gave that information to the Ancestral File and that contribution is linked to me. When I looked at my father's record it had a link under contributors to request a correction to his Church Membership record. Now that was a new one. I looked at all the records of my family members that are LDS and saw they have the same link. You just don't find it on those that weren't members during their life time. Which are the majority of the people in my database.

To finish up my project tonight I worked on my grandmother Sarah L. Miller's record. I found that unknown4470317 contributed her middle name. I never had her middle name only an inital. I kept meaning to ask my father what it was. It says Lavina is her middle name. I added it to my personal genealogy program. Since unknown4470317 is a contributor to information on Ancestral File or Pedigree Resource file and generic and non-claimable I can't determine who submitted it.

As I worked my way around my grandmother's file, cleaning up localities I found that my sister Brenda's id was listed as a contributor. I forgot that she had submitted that. I think it's the only temple work she has ever submitted. Her daughter did the baptism for my grandmother after she died. Then my parents came out to the temple there in Toronto to have my mother do the endowment while my sister was going through the temple for the first time and getting sealed to her husband. It was such a great time. I need to call my sister and have her claim her legacy contribution. Maybe I can convince her to help work on combining while I'm at it.

Well, I've learned a lot about my family and new FamilySearch tonight. I am calling it quits for another week. Don't forget that this Sunday and Monday the NFS site will be down for maintenance. I hope whatever changes they do to the systems helps it move a little faster.

See ya tomorrow, for tomorrow is always another genealogy day!

Thursday, June 26, 2008

New FamilySearch News

I just received this from FamilySearch. It is a reminder that NFS will be unavailable June 29th and 30th for maintenance. I find it curious that New FamilySearch is already available is so many languages. Are the China, Japan and Korean temple districts on the roll-out?

New FamilySearch unavailable during maintenance
To: Registered family history consultants, center directors and priesthood leaders
Please be advised that the new FamilySearch web site ( will be down for maintenance on June 29th and 30th, 2008 and will not be available for use during this time. It will be available again for use on July 1, 2008.

FamilySearch Support

U.S. and Canada: 1-866-406-1830

International: Go to for more toll-free phone numbers.

El nuevo FamilySearch no estará disponible durante el mantenimiento

A: Consultores de historia familiar ya registrados, directores de centros y líderes del sacerdocio

Se le notifica que el sitio web del nuevo FamilySearch ( no funcionará del 29 al 30 de junio de 2008 y no estará disponible para su uso durante ese período. Estará nuevamente disponible para su uso el primero de julio de 2008.


Soporte de FamilySearch

E.U.A. y Canadá: 1-866-406-1830

Internacional: Hallarán más números telefónicos gratuitos en

O novo FamilySearch não estará disponível durante a manutenção

Para: Consultores registrados de história da família, diretores de centros e líderes do sacerdócio

Informamos que o site do novo FamilySearch ( estará desativado para manutenção nos dias 29 e 30 de junho de 2008 e, portanto, não estará disponível para uso durante esse período. O site estará novamente disponível em 1º de julho de 2008.


Suporte do FamilySearch

E.U.A. e Canadá: 1-866-406-1830

Internacional: O site contém números de telefone de chamada gratuita para outros locais.

Das neue FamilySearch ist während der Wartung nicht verfügbar

An: Registrierte Genealogie-Fachberater, Leiter der Genealogie-Forschungsstellen und Priestertumsführer

Wir kündigen hiermit an, dass die neue FamilySearch-Website ( am 29. und 30. Juni 2008 zur Wartung geschlossen wird und während dieser Zeit nicht verwendet werden kann. Sie wird am 1. Juli 2008 wieder zur Verfügung stehen.

Mit frdl. Grüßen,

FamilySearch Support

U.S. und Kanada: 1-866-406-1830

International: Auf der Website finden Sie weitere gebührenfreie Telefonnummern.

Nouveau FamilySearch non disponible durant la mise à jour du site

Dest : Consultants, directeurs de centre et dirigeants de la prêtrise

Nous vous informons que le site internet du nouveau FamilySearch ( sera temporairement hors service lors de sa mise à jour les 29 et 30 juin 2008.

Le site sera de nouveau disponible à compter du 1 juillet 2008.


FamilySearch Support

U.S. et Canada: 1-866-406-1830

International : Pour obtenir des numéros verts supplémentaires, allez sur

한국어 (Korean)

유지 보수 기간 새로운 FamilySearch 웹사이트를 사용할 없습니다.

수신: 등록된 가족 역사 상담원, 센터 관리자, 신권 지도자

2008 6 29일과 30, 새로운 FamilySearch 웹사이트( 유지 보수

목적으로 다운되며 기간 중에는 사용할 없음을 알려드립니다. 2008 7 1일부터 다시

사용할 있습니다.


FamilySearch 지원부

미국 캐나다: 1-866-406-1830

국제: 방문하시면 수신자 부담 전화 번호 목록 전체를 보실 있습니다.

日本語 (Japanese)

新しいファミリーサーチ はメンテナンス中ご利用いただけません


2008 6 29 日および 30 は、メンテナンスのため新しいファミリーサーチ Web サイト
( を利用いただけません。2008 7 1 日より再度ご利用いただけます。


ファミリーサーチ サポート

アメリカ合衆国およびカナダ: 1-866-406-1830

インターナショナル: その他のフリーダイヤルは、 を参照してください。
中国 (Chinese)


: 已註冊的使用者,家庭歷史中心主管及聖職弟兄們





美國及加拿大免費服務專線: 1-866-406-1830


Wednesday, June 25, 2008

New FamilySearch Roll-out Continues

I have been corresponding with my source at FamilySearch about the roll-out. Thought you might like a peek at what is happening.

Here's an update on some temple districts. Since I can't remember what I've given you I might have some repetition.

Temples that are now live on new FamilySearch

Nashville – June 10
Madrid Spain - June 10
San Jose Costa Rica - June 10
Ciudad Juárez México (El Paso Stakes) – June 17
Hermosillo Sonora Mexico - June 17
Birmingham – June 24
Raleigh – June 24

Temples with announced dates

Newport Beach - July 8
Redlands - July 8
Johannesburg South Africa - July 8
Caracas Venezuela - July 8
Santiago Chile - July 8

I asked if all the temples that had been placed on hold now had an official roll-out date. Here is their response.
In North America, the only districts with an official date are Redlands and Newport Beach. There are nineteen other districts in NA that have begun their preparation periods and have received notices indicating that their temple districts could go live in the next 90-120 days. These nineteen are:

Columbia SC
Columbia River
St Paul
Washington DC
Oklahoma City

The remaining NA temples in Utah, Idaho, and Las Vegas are still on hold. I don't have all of the data for the other international temples since my focus is on the NA districts.
We are hitting some milestones right now. Of the 127 temple districts that I currently know of operating 56 are now live, 34 are announced and we have only 37 temple district unannounced right now. With the recent announcements all the United States temple districts are either live or announced EXCEPT the Wasatch Front which are the temples in Idaho and Utah. Those of course have been rumored to be last. The Wasatch Front accounts for 14 of the unannounced temples districts. The next big chuck of unannounced temples are in Asia & Middle East and the Pacific Islands areas.

Given that news; tomorrow will probably give us another round of temple district receiving word. I have updated this information on my New FamilySearch Roll-out spreadsheet. I wonder what temple districts will go next?

See ya tomorrow, for tomorrow is always another genealogy day!


It's been six months since I've mentioned Scanfest. That was back in my New Year's resolution article as part of getting myself organized this year. I am reporting back that I have been attending Scanfest. Oh, what is Scanfest you ask?

"It's a time when family history lovers gather online to chat while scanning their precious family photos and documents." And, boy, do we love to chat. It's been fun gaining all these new fellow genealogist friends while working on the worth while project of scanning all my documents and photos.

I haven't scanned any photo's yet. My priority was to first scan all the important family documents for my immediate family. Then I could put them on a flash drive and have all the information with me in an emergency. After I completed that project I am now working on scanning all my old syllabus' from past genealogy conferences. I plan on making a spreadsheet broken down by subject and classes and link them to the articles on my hard drive. It's taking me forever to do this but I am passionate about getting it done. I will then donate my old syllabus' to my local family history center. Thus freeing up valuable shelf space in my tiny computer room.

Scanfest is held the last Sunday of the month, so that's this Sunday. The hours are 11am - 2pm PST, I always seem to be late because I have to sneek away from part of church to attend. Scanfest is hosted by Miriam Robbins Midkiff the author of the AnceStories blog and she does a wonderful job. If you want to join me at Scanfest this Sunday, please following this link.

See ya tomorrow, for tomorrow is always another genealogy day!

Monday, June 23, 2008

Adventures in FamilySearch Indexing - Week 48

What in the world was a doing yesterday that caused me not to work on FamilySearch Indexing? Well, for starters my daughter came over and we just got to talking and talking. Then the family had to watch the TV show about the girl with 8 limbs - TWICE! It think it was on National Geographics. Not exactly a Sunday afternoon activity but the family was together and that was nice.

The other thing going on was my computer was busy uploading all my data to Mozy. I had it set on the fastest setting and it was going a such at good clip that I hated to monkey with it. The Mozy tech was surprised at how fast my connection is. It should be finished tonight uploading everything. That was one of the bad things about moving over to a new computer - Mozy wouldn't recognize the new computer having the same info to backup. Mozy tried to help me fix that, and have it recognize it the same, but it didn't work. So, I am backing everything up again online. You just have to have a good backup plan in place.

I found out that Mozy is located in American Fork just a couple of minutes down the road. That might be why I have such a good connection to them. I sure hope we don't have a natural disaster that takes the both of us out. Then my backup plans would be toast. I just really like Mozy so I'm not sure what I might do, or if I will look at the competition. It just seems stupid to have the server I backup to in the same city that I live. They are suppose to be my big answer in any scenario. Well at least I have an off-site backup that's a plus.

When I signed onto FamilySearch Indexing tonight I found one edited message for us.
From: Headquarters
Subject: Semimonthly Message - edited
Date: 17 Jun 2008

"Would you like to choose what project you work on each time you index?"

Press the Download From...button at the top of the application's start page, choose the project you would like to work on, and click OK.

Birthplace Fields in the 1870 US Federal Census

Because the index should accurately reflect the record, please do not type United States in the Place of Birth: Country field unless it is actually written on the document. Do not assume countries base on cities or states.

Former German and Prussian states and provinces, such as Hesse-Nasau, Bavaria and Waurttemberg, are sometimes written in the place of birth column. Index these states (even though they are in a foreign country) in the Place of Birth: State or Territory field. A red wavy line will appear when you do this, but it is okay, the system is simply asking you to double-check your work because these locations are not in the lookup list.


In order to create consistency and to help with arbitration, please follow these guidelines for indexing punctuation:

  1. Do not type periods, commas, or semicolons after initials or abbreviations for either names or event places.
  2. Use the following punctuation when it is normally part of a name, place or phrase:

  • Hyphen. For example, in names such as Wilson-Gaston, or in a relationship such as daughter-in-law.
  • Apostrophe. For example, in a name such as O-Farrell.
Multiple-Image Batches

To browse through the images in a multiple-image batch, press the down arrow to go to the next image or the up arrow to go to the previous image. If there are multiple records per image, you will have to press the arrows a few times to get to the next or previous image.
I have been choosing which projects I wanted to work on for quit a while now. Since I've been working on the Louisiana 1850-1954 Death Certificates project I once again picked that.

I had quite a few infants and young children tonight in my first batch. Quite a few of people died from bronchial pneumonia and it was only October. I also had a young widow of 26, it made me wonder if any children where left orphans at her passing. That would just be so sad. Then about the last 5 records jumped to July, it made we wonder how the numbers could be so off to jump from October to July.

The first record on my second batch gave me trouble. The name said "infant of Willie Mae Cherry". How are you suppose to index that? I knew I couldn't put infant in there. I was going to index the name as Willie Mae Cherry and then I made out a faint "Dorothy Mae Cherry birth cert." That solved my problem.

I indexed 17 records in my first batch and 16 in my second batch. My total records indexed now are 7,726. It's been 48 weeks since I started indexing. I am almost at my 1 year mark - WAHOO! I know many have indexed lots more than me. One person is Sue Anne on Sue Anne's Thoughts she wrote an article about it. As of the end of May she had indexed 50,000 names. Great job Sue Anne. I don't know how long that took her but FamilySearch Indexing hasn't been around but a couple of years. Maybe in 6 years I can reach that mark!

Well it's now time for bed and so to bed must go I.

See ya tomorrow, for tomorrow is always another genealogy day!

Sunday, June 22, 2008

On-line Beta - Family History Library Consultant Training

I heard about this project taking place back in January. Then when the roll-out was placed on hold so was this online training. I received this email notice of the training late. I am still passing it along encase anyone is able to take advantage. Since this is a beta I am sure we will hear more about it down the road.
Helping Family History Happen

FamilySearch is testing on-line consultant training on Monday, June 30, 2008 from 11:00 AM - 12:30 PM (MT)

The on-line classroom has a capacity of 200 so we are asking people to register.

To register please go to:

Thanks so much, keep up the great work!

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Design Wars

Ok, I'm a little late in reporting this but the Ancestry Insider had this great article "Generations Network files suit against Millenia. I had been working on a redesign of my blog layout the night the article came out. I wanted to put affiliate links to products I recommend on my blog; so I now have a three column layout. Because of this I didn't know about the AI article until later.

Well as it happens I found an image of Legacy 7 on Amazon and thought someone had mixed up and put the FamilyTree Maker new graphic there instead. The image was small and I didn't take the time to consider what I had seen. It wasn't until I read Ancestry Insider's article that I realized yes, Legacy has a new image and it looks really close to FTMs. To see Family Tree Maker and Legacy 7's new box designs please visit the Ancestry Insider's article.

My opinion of it, it stinks. I loved Legacy's old design and was very unique. Well sorta as you will learn in Ancestry Insiders article. The old designs upside down pedigree chart was very appealing to me.

The curious thing about the new design image of Legacy 7 is that their website still uses this old design. (image 1) If it really is an old design. I have found Legacy Family Tree boxed in other design images.

I have often wondered if Legacy was re-boxing and selling their older versions at discounted prices. Or else someone is copying the Legacy Family Tree name.

Speaking about boxes. When I received my pre-ordered Legacy 7 the manual and the software never came in a commercial box. They were just thrown into the mailer. I was really disappointed with that. So I don't know what box style I should of even had.

Last night I inquired about this on the Legacy Mailing List and I was un-subscribed. I could of just had unfortunate timing there. They had recently banned a discussion taking place regarding Ancestry.

Anyways, I am resubscribed to the Legacy Mailing List but I wasn't going to make any further inquires on the matter there.

Oh, and what do I think about the lawsuit. I think BTH2 the designer for both Family Tree Maker and Legacy's new design has some major explaining to do. I'm sure glad I don't work for their company.

See ya tomorrow, for tomorrow is always another genealogy day!

Syncing with NFS on a Mac

Yes, it's true all you Mac users. You to will be able to sync with NFS with your Mac. No need to install Windows just so you can still use your favorite genealogy software package. Who will allow this capability you ask? The cat was let out of the bag on the LDS-Ward-Consultant mailing list today.
Although not yet released, FamilyInsight (the successor to PAF Insight) will work on Mac OSX.

Interested user asked question on how this will all work. One obvious FamilyInsight beta tester gave us more insight.
Once you use Reunion on the Mac you will not want anything to do with Windows, Vista or any of the PC systems or programs. The Mac will have its own FamilyInsight - soon to come out. You will just Gedcom your PC records over and open them in Reunion and you will be away. I have had no problems with NFS at all, even though the Mac Safari browser has not been formally tested by NFS for compatibility as of yet. Direct your money to get the big screen and latest chip you can afford. You will want open both NFS and Reunion side by side for the 40% increase in productivity larger screens enable. No need to concern yourself about hanging on to old windows programs - just make the switch and you will soon become comfortable and be glad you had.

At the BYU Computerized Genealogy Conference Gordon Clarke had mentioned that we would see a Mac program that would sync with NFS. He never mentioned how many there would be, but at least now we know of one.

I give you permission to buy a Mac now.

See ya tomorrow, for tomorrow is always another genealogy day!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

New FamilySearch Tree Sagas - Week 6

It's been like pulling teeth this week to make myself get on New FamilySearch. I don't know why? Maybe I'm lazy or maybe the site is so slow it doesn't seem appealing to work on it. I transcribed the minutes to the UVPAFUG May meeting on New FamilySearch Synchronization Options: with Ancestral Quest, Family Insight and RootsMagic and I think I'm spoiled now. You can read the full minutes here.

The minutes are great but you really need to SEE the demonstration. The DVD presentation of this meeting is available to members on DVDs #142 & 143. It is interesting to watch and see how three different companies have decided to present their ability to sync with NFS. All have a different flavor and I am sure everyone will find one method to their liking. Legacy wasn't there because they were in the middle of rolling-out Legacy 7 and they had not prepared anything for NFS yet.

Here is a little synopsis of what I think.

Ancestral Quest - Gaylon Findlay has developed massive amounts of screens to show massive amounts of data. Appeared to be the most comprehensive but also the most complicated. You can use his program with your current PAF database or with Ancestral Quest. Ancestral Quest is 95% PAF anyways - with some enhancements that were sorely needed in PAF.

FamilyInsight - Which is the successor to PAF Insight was developed by John Vilburn. John has delivered his NFS sync using the same layout that PAF Insight users are familiar with. If you have used PAF Insight I think FamilyInsight will be very intuitive for you to use. He also has a neat freebie tool that he will be making available to everyone on his website called "GetMyAncestors". I think of it as the NFS way of making a GEDCOM, without the GEDCOM. You can download information off of NFS, way cool! Then I found out the other developers have the same feature but you have to buy their program to use it. Great marketing tool John!

RootsMagic - Now this is the one I was most interested in. Most of you know I switched to RootsMagic because I had this feeling it would interface better with NFS than all the others. I like how Bruce Buzbee's brain works. Lots of information in very uncluttered screens and very user friendly to boot. RootsMagic has "FamilySearch Central" where you can see in one easy snapshot all the stats you want to know about NFS and your database. Just loved that! It seemed to work faster than the other programs did too. I asked Bruce about his screens for notes and sources and he said they weren't ready for prime time yet but he will have them. RootsMagic did appear to be the most logically laid out and the easiest to use.

Now that I had a taste for what was coming, in working with new FamilySearch, it is so hard to go back to just working in NFS alone. Spoiled, spoiled, spoiled but I will try to overcome that.

The first thing I noticed when I logged into NFS was this notice:
New FamilySearch will be down for maintenance on June 29th and 30th 2008.
I have to remember that because I like to work on NFS on Monday evenings. Which by the way I haven't done for several weeks now and we are into week 6 already. I'm working on being flexible, what can I say.

Last week I had submitted a request to claim my father's (who is living) legacy contribution. I haven't had a response back yet on that. It did say it could take 4-6 weeks and it really hasn't been a week yet so I'm not too surprised there.

I also put in a suggestion last week that they show my contributor information instead of just my name on the legacy contribution I claimed of my mother. I had this comment on my blog regarding that suggestion.
It is a known error that claimed submissions do not have any contact info. They are working on that.
Thanks Anonymous, it's nice to know they are working on that.

I had also thought very excitedly last week that I had a new found relative on NFS. I emailed Bill Stephens and found out he was the FamilySearch Support missionary helping me work on the issues I had with my chosen summary listing showing correctly. He didn't cover his tracks so that's why his name was appearing. I was so disappointed that he wasn't that long lost member relative I had dreamed of.

So with all this I did get onto NFS tonight and work on my family. I decided that since I don't have my rights to my father's legacy contribution I would continue to work on my mother's line for now. There went my theory to print out a four generation pedigree chart and work on everyone on it before preceding to a new pedigree chart. Being flexible can really get tiring when your a very organized person to a fault.

I worked mainly on my Bentley/Scranton line. I did notice while looking at possible duplicates some potential relatives that I need to look at closer. Every time I get in NFS I find something new to look into a little further. I gives me great research ideas while going over my families.

I found no knew bugs or any feedback that I needed to submit. It felt like I was moving around faster in the program. I don't know if it was the internet, FamilySearch, or that I'm getting more familiar with things. Kind of picking up a rhythm. I also found one little short cut that appears to be helping. Instead of looking at all the contributors under each event I just look at the contributor of the sex for the individual. That seems to give me everyone that contributed anything on the file in the old databases. I'm sure there are times it won't but it was accurate tonight. That is saving me time. Unfortunately I still seem to be the lone voice submitting work on that line. Maybe someday soon I will find a living kindred spirit out there.

See ya tomorrow, for tomorrow is always another genealogy day!

I just read Dick Eastman's article A Graphical Search Engine: I couldn't wait to try it out. I just love search engines. It is very visually appealing. The results come back as little images of the websites. I put in my name and could see all the website designs I have done. Kind of like walking back in time. It's cool, it's different but I'm not sure how functional it is for me. It's a different mindset that I have to absorb.

I was pleased to see that on the site there is a little Firefox add-on that you can download. It will add SearchMe to your search engine box. Sorry not sure how to describe it but it's on the upper right hand corner of my browser. I just click on an arrow and say which search engine I want to use and it will let me put the terms in and search away. I use it all the time and now I will play with SearchMe and see if I can change my mindset.

See ya tomorrow, for tomorrow is always another genealogy day!

FamilySearch Update: 72 million Names Added to Mexico Baptism Records Collection

The Record Search pilot has added 72 million new names to its Mexico Baptism collection online. The collection was transcribed from Mexico parish records dating from 1659 to 1905, and is not necessarily complete for any particular place or region. It also includes records from the Middle America Vital Records Index--Mexico that was published in 1999 on CD only.

The newly expanded database can be searched for free at The data was transcribed by FamilySearch's impressive force of volunteer indexers worldwide (see Volunteers donate a little time each week or month transcribing select information from digital images of original source documents using FamilySearch's online indexing utility. Anyone interested in joining the global, community-based indexing initiative, or wanting to see what projects are currently being indexed, can do so at

Project Title: Mexico Baptisms
Indexed Names: 72.3 million
# of Source Records Used: 17.6 million

Monday, June 16, 2008

Surname Suggestion List

I just read Dick Eastman article Surname Suggestion List. I couldn't wait to download the program and see what suggestions it had for Weatherwax. It didn't have all the variations that I have seen but at least it gave an indication that I should try Wiederwax.

If I had known that information when I first started to work on genealogy it would of save many hours of research. It would of been my first indication that it was derived from a German surname. I need to give some feed back to developer Matthew Combs and say thanks and give him the other spelling variations I have for the Weatherwax. I guess I need to put that on my to-do list.

Besides giving spelling suggestions the program will also let you do a Google search on the results. Now that is really handy. It appears to be a simple and useful tool for the genealogy community. I'm sure I will be giving it more spins in the future.

See ya tomorrow, for tomorrow is always another genealogy day!

Adventures in FamilySearch Indexing - Week 47

Well it looks like I wasn't alone last week in wondering why there were so few English language projects to index. Here is a little little insight from one reader.
The lack of English projects is due to the push to complete the Freedman Letters. I called one of the managers of the Indexing at the church offices on 11 June and complained. He said there were a lot of 1870 US Federal Census records left to do and some should be posted by Thursday, 12 June. I have been told to notify him if they don't appear and he will fix it. Count on it! It isn't a matter of supply—we have the whole vault to index. They were trying to "encourage" everyone into doing Freedmen. Guess it worked, but it's time to give us more English projects.

I was sure that the Freedmen Letters were already indexed by now. How many English language projects would there be available on FamilySearch Indexing today? Here's what I found:
  • Connecticut - 1870 US Federal Census
  • Georgia - 1870 US Federal Census
  • Illinois-Cook - Birth Certificates 1888-1915
  • Louisiana - 1870 US Federal Census
  • Louisiana 1850-1954 Death Certificates
  • Missouri - 1850 US Federal Census
  • Ohio - 1870 US Federal Census
  • Trento Italy Baptism Records 1784-1924
I don't know, that last one on the list doesn't seem like it would be in English. My guess is that someone made a mistake. It would seem logical that Italy Baptism Records would be in Italian.

What did I pick? I was kind of at a loss here. First there was no New York records. Ok, first I'm crying about English language records and next it's about not having New York records. I know I can't have everything but I'm just letting FamilySearch here know that there is a high demand for New York records ;)

I was next kind of torn between the Illinois birth certificates and the Louisiana death certificates. I was really touched this week by all the stories I have read on various message board regarding the release of the Texas Death Certificates on FamilySearch Record Search. I just want the same experience with some New York Death Certificates, which are NOT listed in the FHL Catalog by the way. I would expect that might be one reason they are not being indexed. Anyways, I was touched by people stories and wanted to help make these types of vital records available to others.

Before I forget has anyone else noticed that if you go on there is now a little orange box on the right hand side.

Sneak PeekTake a look at millions of records and great new search features.

I tried to visit it at my FHC on Friday but it needed a application that wasn't on their computer and I couldn't download it without admin rights. At home I was able to see that the GO button takes you to FamilySearch Record Search - Pilot Site. It's nice to know they are starting to link this into the old FamilySearch site so people can find things. Well you physically need to search in two different places but at least you can find the link. I am sure there are plenty of people that don't read mailing lists and aren't aware of what FamilySearch has been up to lately.

I picked once again the Louisiana 1850-1954 Death Certificates. I guess I have claimed that project as mine own now. It's to bad it took over 20 minutes to download and then was painfully slow. The rest of my computer is working at a good speed. I just don't know that the deal is. I decided to try indexing while off line and the first couple of records where still slow, then all of a sudden it was back to normal speed again. Since it took so long I didn't want to risk doing another batch so close to bed time. I indexed 20 records and now have indexed 7693 records to date.

We did have a message from Headquarters this week.
From: Headquarters
Subject: Semimonthly Message
Date: 16 Jun 2008


In order to create consistency and to help with arbitration, please follow these guidelines for indexing punctuation:

  1. Do not type periods, commas, or semicolons after initials or abbreviations for either names or event places.
  2. Use the following punctuation when it is normally part of a name, place, or phase
*Hyphen. For example, in names such as Wilson-Gaston, or in a relationship such as daughter-in-law.
*Apostrophe. For example, in a name such as O'Farrell.
Birthplace Fields in the 1870 US Federal Census

Because the index should accurately reflect the record, please do not type United States in the Place of Birth: Country field unless it is actually written on the document. Do not assume countries based on cities or states.

Multiple-Image Batches

Press the down arrow to go to the next image in the batch. If there are multiple records per image, you will have to press the down arrow a few times to get to the next image.

"Would you like to choose what project you work on each time you index?"

Press the Download From... button at the top of the application's start page, choose the project you would like to work on, and click OK.
As one last thought this week I wanted to put out a request that you spread the word about FamilySearch Indexing and it's by product Record Search. I was sort of nervous when I read the Ancestry Insider's article Ancestry Indexing Project Beta. It's great that Ancestry will make the indexes that are created by volunteers available for free to everyone. I just hate to have FamilySearch Indexing volunteers leave and go index for the competition. We need every hand that can type.

See ya tomorrow, for tomorrow is always another genealogy day!

Sunday, June 15, 2008

I found this intriguing notice on one of the mailing lists I belong to today.
There is a new genealogy social networking site . Made especially for those that can't get enough of myspace/facebook type sites (and yes I realize some of you will have NO interest in this at all)

Some of you may wonder...why a site like this. Well I will tell you. Last year I made a myspace page for my genealogy forum and found lots of friends that have genealogy as an interest. Wednesday, I was "interviewed" about my thoughts on myspace and genealogy....did it help?

I got to thinking, nope, I've not found one piece of information or person with which to share information on myspace other than "genealogy news"

Then I got to thinking....I had seen a "myspace" type site for another hobby I'm interested in but I didnt know of one for one of the most widespread hobbies in the world. Why not have a social sight for people that were not looking to "find a date or a mate".

People that know me, know I have a passion for research and for helping other people find things and for helping other people find living relatives that might help them break down their brickwalls.

Will this work? I don't know...I have high hopes for it.

This site will be a work in progress for many weeks to come I'm sure, and suggestions are always welcome even if I might not always do what you suggest.

This is gonna be fun....yeah its gonna be fun
Shannon Byers
Well, I don't really care for MySpace or Facebook but I am a member of both. Some of those applications can be so annoying. I thought what they hay I will try this new site and see what it's about. Fellow genealogist are just the people I like to socialize with. It Appears to be a nice clean site. Why don't you hop over there and claim your own little AncestralSpace. Then we can check out the site together.

See ya tomorrow, for tomorrow is always another genealogy day!

Friday, June 13, 2008

New FamilySearch Tree Sagas - Week 5

I received a copy of President Hinckley's photo and quote that used to be on New FamilySearch's sign-in page. Thanks so much Joyce. I was trying to add it to this article but some reason it was just coming out fuzzy. I suspect it's operator error. Here is the quote.
"From the very beginning of this Church, its members have been under religious obligation to identify their ancestors."

President Gordon B. Hinckley
Another reader "Momklip" sent me the link to where you can see it, click here. It's on a Family History Consultant website, and now that I've posted the link I'm sure someone at FamilySearch will note the "error" and change it.

In last week's article I wrote about how I standardized a place in the detail view and then changed it to the corrected locality in the summary view. I found out that when I left the summary view and then later returned back it would go back to what I originally had listed and not the corrected version. It wouldn't stick in the summary view. I sent an inquiry to support to see what was going on.

That night even before I got off my computer I had a reply from someone at FamilySearch support. I decided to read it in the morning and reply to it. The person helping me was trying to have me change it in the details, but that wasn't the issue. The issue was changing it in the summary view to what I had in the details. Anyways to try and make a long story short after two phone calls and several attempts to fix the problem, all we succeeded in doing was making me have my name listed three times as the submitter of the same event information instead of twice as before. I feel like it's tied up somehow to my mother's legacy contribution that was changed to my name.

I did finally get an answer to support on the issue.
Document ID: 102972
new FamilySearch: Different information appears in the "Summary" view than in the "Details" view
Instructions for Area Support
Please thank the patron and let him or her know that the engineers are aware of this problem. Then close the case.
When you view the available items to set as the default Summary view, the same items don't appear in the Details view.
This is a known issue and has been reported to the engineers.
So the bottom line - I've experienced my first bug with the system. At least it was only standardizing the locality name and nothing earth shattering.

Here is the reply I received concerning my name being listed twice, well three times now as a submitter on the same event.
Dear Sister Zamora
Thank you for contacting family search support.
You have a good question. I am sure you are right that when you took over your mothers legacy that put you in twice because each submission will put the contributor in. The engineers are trying very hard to update this wonderful program and the only way to make it better is feed back from us as missionaries and you as a patron user. May I suggest that you submitt a feedback to the engineers as I feel that is a good suggestion to combine the contributors if they are the same individual. At this point each entry has a submittor or contributor and that is why you are listed twice and maybe they will not feel combining is necessary but it would be nice to know.
I will also bring this up at our meeting that we have each week as well.
Good luck and thank you for helping us make the system work better
First thing I did tonight was find my grandfather's event that had me now listed three times as the submitter and give a feedback/suggestion to merge my contributor information together.

This past week I wrote my dad and asked him if I could claim his legacy contribution since he no longer does genealogy. He was very happy to have me claim it. I was able to find three different contributor ids for my dad and I put in a request to claim each of them. I wonder how long it will take to claim a living individual's legacy contribution? It says 4-6 weeks but it was only a couple of days to claim mine or my deceased mom's contribution. I will report back when I receive word on my request. I also wonder if on my grandfather's death information if I will be listed four times as the contributor since my dad contribution is there too.

I did get one surprise while I was looking over the submitters on my grandfather's record. Someone has claimed their legacy contribution and now I have an email address to contact them. The contributors name is Bill Stephens so I emailed him. It would be great if I found some long lost cousin that is a member of the Church. WAHOO! that means someone else will be working with me to clean up the files on my family.

Speaking of someone working with me I realized all week that my name will be all over the place on mine, my mother's and now my father's contributions. That means I really do need to do all this combining myself because I can actually edit my own stuff. If you were a previous contributor to databases on FamilySearch then you have a big job ahead of you. I guess my family could help but if they need to edit anything they would need me to go in there and make the changes. Well at least I have one potential partner in crime now.

Oops, I found on my great-grandmother Bentley's birth record myself listed as a contributor with my contact information and then me listed again with my mother's id information right after my name. But, it doesn't give my contact information. Is it suppose to be that way? I sent off a feedback to find out why. I really want to make sure that my contact information is available since I took over my mother's legacy contribution.

Well, it's time now to call it a night. I started over 4 hours ago. I did a lot of looking for my dad's contributor ids to claim. I have also done a little combining on my great grandparents Charles Bentley & Emmeline Green's family. Then of course standardizing all those localities. There is hardly a one that has come through as it should have. That Ancestral File submission of mine was soooooooooo many years ago and before I fixed all my localities. Now I have to go back in and correct them again! This is going to take me a lifetime. I'm off to bed for now.

See ya tomorrow, for tomorrow is always another genealogy day!

Genealogy Guides Aid in Research

June 13, 2008 — News from the Church has added to its online collection of Finding Records of Your Ancestors genealogy guides handbooks for England and Scotland.

The free, downloadable workbooks take an individual through each step of the research process, which includes main Web sites, expert search tips, and how to find and use other church records. Explanations and examples of how to read each document are also provided.

The series includes Denmark, Finland, France, Iceland, Italy, Mexico, Norway, and Sweden guides. The guides are currently available in English; the Mexico guide is also available in Spanish. There is also a guide for those searching for African-American ancestors. Access these and other resources by going to the Research Helps page at

Thursday, June 12, 2008

NFS Roll-out Spreads

I have updated my New FamilySearch Roll-out spreadsheet. We had three district that went live this Tuesday as planned.
  • Nashville, TN - June 10
  • San Jose, Costa Rica - June 10
  • Madrid, Spain - June 10
Districts with official release dates are:
  • Ciudad Juarez Mexico - June 17
  • Hermosillio Mexico - June 17
  • Birmingham Alabama - June 24
  • Raleigh North Carolina - June 24
Temple Districts receiving word that they will go live in late September or in four months.
(Please note that those announced are speculative. I received them by word of mouth from people living in those temple districts. FamilySearch will only confirm with me the temple districts with official release dates or have already gone live on NFS.)
  • Atlanta, Georgia
  • Louisville, Kentucky
  • Columbia River, Washington
  • Denver, Colorado
  • London, England
  • Preston, England
  • Washington, DC
  • Seattle, Washington
  • Spokane, Washington
You can always find the link to my New FamilySearch Roll-out spreadsheet on my blog. There are also links to Miles Meyers' Google Map of NFS Roll-out and the Ancestral Insider NFS Map. I believe between these three versions of the NFS Roll-out you will find a style that will showcase the lists in a manner that will fit your personal preference.

See ya tomorrow, for tomorrow is always another genealogy day!

Everton’s Genealogical Helper Adds New Online Edition!

New Online Edition of Everton’s Genealogical Helper will debut July 1! Subscribe today for only $10.00!

LOGAN, Utah, June 12, 2008. Genealogy Online, Inc., publisher of Everton’s Genealogical Helper, today, announced the publication of the Genealogical Helper in an Online Edition. The Online Edition is an identical copy of the 176-page paper edition – complete with hotlinks to the hundreds of website addresses found therein.

Launch Date – The new Online Edition will launch on July 1 – simultaneous with the home delivery and newsstand date of the paper edition of the July-August issue.

Free Access – Subscribers to the traditional Genealogical Helper will have 100% FREE online access to the magazine – with no extra fees whatsoever. See for sign-up information.

Online Edition subscriptionsEverton’s Genealogical Helper, Online Edition, will sell for just $12.00 per year! That is only $2 per issue! And it’s only $10.00 for subscriptions made before July 1 at or phone 1-800-443-6325.

Net Family History – An important feature of Everton’s Genealogical Helper is the magazine within a magazine entitled Net Family History. New information specific to using the Internet for genealogy is always found in this portion of the bimonthly publication. Extensive website reviews are always located here, as well as articles dealing with Internet-related activities.

Why an online edition? – Every issue of Everton’s Genealogical Helper now contains hundreds of website addresses. The Internet is where some of the most exciting genealogical resource advances are taking place, so it’s required that information about these resources be disseminated to the Helper’s thousands of readers in every issue. Everton’s Genealogical Helper, Online Edition, will allow readers to go from their paper edition to the hotlinked Online Edition and access any of the websites with just a keystroke or two – no more typing in those lengthy website addresses! The Online Edition offers more than just the links found in the magazine – it is the entire magazine itself!

Format & hostingEverton’s Genealogical Helper, Online Edition, will be in pdf format, readable by anyone, with any computer running an Adobe Acrobat Reader (Available at as a FREE download.) The Online Edition will be hosted by, Inc.

Why subscribe to the Genealogical Helper? – Subscribe to have access to the Helper’s how-to & historical articles, Net Family History (see above), genealogical sharing, extensive book and CD-ROM reviews & announcements, queries, the most complete event calendar available anywhere, and hundreds of ads detailing new products and services. In addition to these day-to-day features, you will also have access to the NEW updated, hotlinked Directory of Genealogical and Historical Societies – to be published in the Sept/Oct and Nov-Dec issues! Edited by Leland K. Meitzler, the Helper is guaranteed to help you extend your lines and fill in those blanks in your family tree.

WHAT A DEAL! – Your cost for a full subscription (the paper magazine & online access both) is less than 3 cents per page – delivered to your home, and now accessible online. Subscribe to the Online Edition alone for just over a penny a page! Subscribe by July 1 and it’s less than a penny per page!

Subscribe NOW at: or phone 800-443-6325.

About Genealogy Online, Inc.
Genealogy Online, dba Everton Publishers, is the publisher of Everton’s Genealogical Helper, now in its 62nd year of helping genealogists find their ancestors. Genealogy Online, Inc. also publishes the Handybook for Genealogists, 11th edition, a top-selling guidebook for family historians. Their website is found at: Also see: http//

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Summer Of Sleuthing

Come to the Family History Library and Take the ‘Summer Of Sleuthing’ Challenge

SOS! If you need help keeping your kids occupied this summer, if you would like to learn more about your family, or if you just need a kick start to get you organizing your family records, come take the Family History Library’s ‘Summer Of Sleuthing’ Challenge. Over a six-week period you can complete challenges that will teach you and your whole family how family history can be fun, informative, and rewarding. There will be challenges for all ages with easy tasks to accomplish each week at the library or at home. To assist you, special classes and help will be available at the library throughout the Challenge.

The SOS Challenge will begin with a kick-off event on Saturday June 28th and end with an awards ceremony on Saturday August 9th with Don Anderson, director of the combined Family History Library and World-wide Support Divisions of the Family History Department, giving out the awards.

The kick-off event on June 28th will last one hour and will be repeated every hour from 10:00 am through 7:00 pm. To register for this free event, send an email to or call 801-240-4950.

To view and print the event poster, go online to and click on the link for ‘Family History Library: Research Series and Special Events.’

Come with your family to learn and have fun!

Summer of Sleuthing Challenge

The Summer of Sleuthing Challenge is for everyone who wishes to participate.

There are challenges for each age group: children, youth, and adults. And there are several challenges to choose from in each age group.

Over the six-week period, children and youth will accomplish one or more challenges each week and must complete a minimum of six challenges to earn their Summer of Sleuthing award. Participation in the Summer of Sleuthing Challenge can help children and youth earn Scouting and YW awards.

Adults will complete one or more challenges which they will work on over the six-week period.

Most challenges come with guidelines and helps.

Sample challenges:

Children and Youth:
  1. Interview an older family member and write a brief story about their life.
  2. Go to the Family History Library, explore the “Especially For Youth” pages on the library computer desktop, and write about what you found interesting.
  3. Create a presentation about yourself or your family.
  4. Go to a cemetery and help clean an area. If you have family buried in the cemetery, write down the information from their gravestones.
  5. Help improve access to records by signing up for and doing at least five hours of FamilySearch Indexing (
  6. Look for a relative in records such as census or death records.
  7. And many more.
  1. Write your life story.
  2. Create a heritage scrapbook.
  3. Do descendancy research on the family of one of your ancestors.
  4. And more.
Everyone who participates will keep a journal of their activities and experiences.

Come join with the ‘Sleuthing’ family and take the Summer of Sleuthing Challenge!

FamilySearch Record Search Update

FamilySearch Update: 1850 U.S. Census (Select States), Czech Republic, and Philadelphia Marriages

10 June 2008

The FamilySearch Record Search pilot has just added 3.1 million records from the 1850 U.S. Census for the states of Maine, New Jersey, and Ohio. An additional 117,000 unindexed digital images were added for Philadelphia marriages and Czech Republic church books. These collections can be searched for free at

Pennsylvania, Philadelphia Marriage Indexes - New
Unindexed Digital Images: 25,846

Czech Republic,Litomerice Regional Archive Church Books - Images added
Unindexed Digital Images: 92,001

1850 United States Census (ME,NJ,OH)- Updated with add'l data
Indexed Records: 3,179,432

Sunday, June 08, 2008

Adventures in FamilySearch Indexing - Week 46

I was greeted by the following message this week.
From: Headquarters
Subject: Freemen Letters Project Nearing Completion
Date: 05 Jun 2008

We greatly appreciate all the efforts that have been made on the Freedmen Letters project. This is the first time FamilySearch Indexing has united volunteers to complete a project by a specific date. Because of your individual efforts, we have seen what great things we can accomplish together in such a short period of time. Since May 16th, participants in this project indexed over 106,000 images. That is an amazing accomplishment!

The project is now 97% complete. We are just three days away from our goal date of June 8th. There may be times when batches will not be available. This does not necessarily mean the project is complete; it just means that all of the batches are assigned to volunteers. Please check back often to see if any batches become available until you receive word from us that the project is complete.

If you have a batch from this project that you are not planning to index, please return the batch as soon as possible for someone else to index. To return a batch:
  1. On the start page of the FamilySearch indexing application, click on the batch to be returned.
  2. Click Return Batch.
  3. Click OK.
If you started working on a batch, but you do not think you can finish indexing it by Sunday, save your work to the server and then return the batch for someone else to complete. To save your work to the server and return the batch:
  1. Open the batch.
  2. On the menu bar, click File.
  3. Click Save to Server.
  4. On the menu bar, click File again.
  5. Click Return Batch...
  6. Click OK.
Thank you again for all of your efforts. The progress of this project is being tracked on the FamilySearch indexing home page, Please check there for more information.
I went to the website and saw this message posted.
June 7, 2008: Progress of the Freedmen Letters Project

The Freedmen Letters project is currently 99% complete. Our goal is to finish indexing by Sunday, June 8th. We have seen amazing results from the combined worldwide effort so far. There are still indexing and arbitration batches left to submit. If you do not see any available to download, continue to check back until you hear from us that the project is complete. Keep up the great work!
So of course I had to attempt indexing one last batch of letters. It really wasn't a surprise that the Freedmen Letters weren't even on the list to download from. I think it is great that we indexed that project so quickly. I can't say that I honestly got wrapped up in indexing that project but I did a couple of batches. But, I guess even a few batches by thousands of people helped to get that project done.

I am actually kind of surprised at how slim the pickins are for English language batches on FamilySearch Indexing. I just don't want to learn German, French or Spanish. Aren't I just terrible! I'm even that way in my research. Once I have an ancestor crossing the ocean I just leave him on the docks and go look for someone else to research. I haven't even attempted to work on my husband's lines because his father was born in Poland and his mother in France. If my kids ever catch the genealogy bug the field is wide open for them. I suppose someday my mind will change but right now it's not like I'm lacking in people to do research for. If I ever did find an Irish ancestor among my lines I think I just might be persuaded to do some foreign research then. But, I haven't found any connection there yet.

I don't know how many of you I might of offended with my comments. I love cultures and people just not the learning a foreign tongue part added with a terrible old script. I admire people that research in foreign lands. It would be fantastic to travel to some native home country and see that lands of your ancestors. I think the only way I would get there is if I hired a professional researcher to do the work for me.

My only experience in trying to learn a foreign language was in high school. I took French for a couple of years. Sadly our school district was very humble and the only French teacher they could afford was a man that was shot in the jaw during the war and spoke French with a lisp. No one would sit in the front row because he would spit all over you when he spoke. It confused me to no end. I would sit and listen to him speak and then turn around and have to go into the lab to listen to French tapes. It sounded like I was learning two different languages. I would just sit and cry with frustration. I wanted so badly to drop the class but my parents wouldn't allow me to because Renee is a French name. Maybe with this background you can understand my avoidance of learning a foreign language.

Let's see the only English language projects available are:
  • Louisiana - 1870 Federal Census
  • Louisiana - 1850-1854 Death Certificates
  • Ohio - 1870 US Federal Census
I guess you can guess what I picked. Yup, the death certificates - some of my favorites! I was almost afraid I wasn't going to be able to index it. After waiting 7 minutes for it to download I finally got up and made myself an ice cream cone. When I was done it was up, YIPEE!

The whole time I was indexing it was painfully slow. It was taking forever for all the images to load. I had one lady that I indexed and her name was Mrs. Ernest Stevens. The information knew her parents names, the deceased birth date and place, but not her name. That was a kicker for me. Then I saw it was sort of a pattern for married women to be known as Mrs. So-in-So. I guess that is the 1930's for you.

Then I had a son as an information for his 70 year old father's death. He didn't know his date of birth, birth place or his parent's names. That was kind of sad for me. Must be grief or they didn't speak about such things to each other. The saddest one was a 2 year old that died due to sudden myocardial failure under a general anesthetic for a circumcision. That would be total shock for everyone involved. Such minor surgery too. It said it was due to the anesthesia.

Well I only did the one batch because it ate up so much of my time this evening. I only indexed 19 names for a grand total to date of 7,673. Gotta get to bed and then get up early tomorrow morning.

See ya tomorrow, for tomorrow is always another genealogy day!