From the office: Can you help put records online this weekend?

By Rosemary Collins, 19 October 2017 - 2:09pm

Rosemary Collins on why family historians should help make records more accessible to everyone

Seth BurgessThursday 19 October 2017
Rosemary Collins, editorial assistant
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Seth's family photos
Volunteers can take part in the Worldwide Indexing Event online

The Internet has transformed family history research.

Nowadays, we can go online and instantly search an indexed database of historic records – including the free collections on FamilySearch - for our ancestor’s name.

Of course, original documents are still important – they often contain little details that aren’t included in indexing.

But being able to search indexed information for your ancestor’s name is a great way of finding the needle in the haystack.

Many of these databases wouldn’t exist without the hard work of volunteers, who can also use the Internet to carry out indexing work online.

Now, FamilySearch is looking for volunteers around the world to take part in its Worldwide Indexing Event.

The global initiative, which runs from tomorrow to Sunday, challenges volunteers to enter information from digitally scanned historic documents into FamilySearch’s databases.

You can work on your home computer and spend as much or as little time on it as you want to within the 72-hour period.

There are over 100 projects to choose from, covering all the continents apart from Antarctica.

The records available to index in the United Kingdom include parish records from Derbyshire, Northumberland, Surrey and Warwickshire and National Library of Wales marriage bonds.

You can invite your friends to take part as well.

More volunteers means that this year's event will be bigger and better than ever before.

So far 61,023 volunteers have signed up. In last year’s event, over 100,000 volunteers altogether indexed more than 10 million records.

So why not put aside a bit of time this weekend to take part?

You might be able to use the records in your own research, and if not, you know the information you’ve discovered will help another family historian.

If you’re not sure how it works, you can practice on the indexing programme beforehand.

And if joining the Worldwide Indexing Event whets your appetite for transcription, you’ll be pleased to hear that at Who Do You Think You Are? Magazine, we’re bringing back our successful Transcription Tuesday, giving volunteers another opportunity to add to the records available online.

We’ll be unveiling the exciting range of projects taking part in the next few months, before launching the project in January 2018.

It will be another fantastic opportunity to use the power of the Internet to give back to the family history community.


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