The Family History Library will provide photocopies if there is no digital image online.

I recently found this record:

Benjamin Frnaklin Ida Hull marriage

There is no digital image available online,  but this index ncludes the GS Film number (551111) and Reference ID (p. 152).

My next step is to search the card catalog by fiche or film number and identify the title of the series and the specific volume or volumes on this film number.

Search by film number2

Here is the information for the actual film.  Notice there are three volumes on the roll.  I need a July 12 1910 record, which might be on p. 152 , but could be in  vol. 39 or 40.  I hope they will be willing to check each.

Marriage Bonds v. 38-40

This FamilySearch.org blog  explains the procedure and provides a link to the form to use to make the request.

After I filled out the form, a confirmation screen appeared, showing me what I ordered.

Confrim screen

I’ll let you know how long it takes to arrive.   They will send it to me through email.

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How to find Census Records on Heritage Quest when the image is not available on FamilySearch.org

FamilySearch.org  indexes all census record, but only shows images for some census records.  If the image isn’t on FamilySearch, you are directed to a subscription database, which  is only accessible if you subscribe or when viewed in your  Family History Center or a in local public library that has a subscription. Without a personal subscription, the images can’t be viewed from home.

Heritage Quest is available to all Michigan residents through MEL; many libraries elsewhere in the United States also offer it.  It can be viewed from home.  When the image isn’t available at FamilySearch, you can use the index information to find it on Heritage Quest.   Here is how:

Find the records at FamilySearch.org

1840-census-result

From FamilySearch.org

From this we learn that William P. Withey  in enumerated in the 1840 Census Publication 704 Affiliate Film # (i.e. roll #) 24 Page 273.  But 1840 Census records aren’t in FamilySearch.org

Sign into Heritage Quest either through the MEL site (Michigan residents) or through your local library.    Select CENSUS and on the Search Census Page select the tab “Find by Page Number” on the far right.

FindByPageNumber

Use the down arrow to display the “Series”  dropdown; select the census year/Publication #.

Seriesdropdown

Once the year/Publication number are selected,

  • put the roll number in in the “Roll” box.  From the above example it would be 24
  • put the page number in the “Page” box.  From the above example it would be 273

Notice that 1840 is not a choice on the row of census years to the left.  In a recent class I said that all census records were available free online at Heritage Quest, then retracted that because I couldn’t find them.  My mind slipped a gear and I momentarily forgot that you must go to this far tab to see those years.  (What can I say…. the older I get, the more often it happens).   Heritage Quest has not indexed 1830, 1840, 1850 so they aren’t options under the two ‘Search” tabs, but they are there and you can find them by roll and page number.

Click the “Search” Arrow and it will take you to the census page that you found indexed in FamilySearch.org.   Notice is it image 1 of 2.  Use the arrow on the right to go to the second image.

Image1-or-2

And here is the record I wanted — all without paying a subscription cost or going to the library.  Notice I can zoom to make it bigger, print it, download it or reverse the polarity.

image

From HeritagQuest

Hope you found this helpful.

 

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NGS is offering a free online course on census records

The NGS (National Genealogical Society) courses are all excellent, but usually there is a fee or they are for members only.  This one is free for everyone and presented through the FamilySearch.org site .

If you are just starting to work with census records, I think you will find it very helpful.  Even if you have been working with them for some time, you might find some new information here.

See  the NGS page announcing the course. 

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A “new” site…. new to me and well worth bookmarking.

I just found this “new site” — but it has a copyright date of 2010-2014.  How have I missed it all these years?  I think it is perfect for people who are just starting to use the web for their genealogy.

And perfect timing as tomorrow, when I will be teaching a class on using the web to do genealogy.  This goes on my lists of sites to demo.

What?  Oh… you want the link! Here it is:  Learn Web Skills: Researching Your Family Tree

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Family Search Changes Again.

FamilySearch.org recently changed its interface.  This always causes angst, even when the changes are for the better. Now I have to learn new ways to navigate. Sigh.

So I sat down to write a blog about it, but instead I found Dear Myrtle’s blog and video discussing the new changes and she  says everything I was thinking plus some.   So instead of writing a blog,  I recommend this:

FamilySearch: It’s Not All That Bad  — be sure to watch the video posted on it.

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Digital Images on FamilySearch.org

There are three main types of collections on FamilySearch.org:

  1. Indexes only;
  2. Indexed with accompanying digital images; and
  3. Unindexed digital images (browse this collection)

The other day I was using an unindexed browse collection to find probate records. To my delight, the probate records for this county included  several index volumes, starting with A- Chesterfield, Abner … and ending with Vering, John-Watrous, Victor.

What?  Wait!  I need to find the surname Withey.  Surely there were people in that county whose last name ended with something beyond Watrous.   So I checked the FHL catalog and, yes! — there was a final volume that would include everyone between Victor Watrous and Z.   It had been filmed, but there was no link to that volume on the online collection.  It may have been loaded, but no link created or it may have somehow missed being scanned.  In any case, I needed it so I wanted to get it fixed.

I clicked the help button and submitted my query.  Within a day or so I got a response.   Here is the pertinent information: “When we accessed the collection we read this in the collection description:  ‘This collection is being published as images become available.’ The latest update to the collection was on 11 August 2014, so additions are being made on an ongoing basis.”

So two reminders, when accessing unindexed collections:

  1. Remember to read the collection description!
  2. When you are puzzled, send in a HELP request (click the help button)

Actually, these reminders work for the indexed collections too.

 

 

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Get off the internet and go to the library!

Despite the wealth of genealogical information on the internet, there is an even greater wealth not there. Further, some that is available on the internet can be difficult or costly to find.

What is not on the internet?

  • Much of what is available on film through the family history library
  • Most of what has been published after 1923
  • Many books published prior to 1923, but not digitized
  • A huge amount of manuscript material held in libraries and archives but yet digitized.
  • Material held in courthouses, but not filmed or digitized.

Context may be missing; information in a large database might be retrievable only piece by piece.  Something your eye might have caught is hidden under a misspelling or mis-transcription.  There may be no records for a span of years, but without the volumes in front of you, you may overlook the gap.   Any one of a number of problems can cause a database to malfunction for research purposes.

When we comb the internet for information, we are searching… not researching. Research requires that we identify what relevant information might be available to us and for that the internet is enormously useful.  Use these 3 free sites to discover what is available –and where it can be found.

Libraries with strong genealogy collections used to be crowded and bustling.  Now they are underused.   Of course we want to take advantage of what is available online…. but we still need to also use what is not online.

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August 4 deadline for feedback on FamilySearch Wiki redesign

It is hard to keep up with everything.  I just discovered an important page on the FamilySearch Wiki asking for feedback on a redesign of their Wiki pages.  This link opens the page in a new window.  I encourage you to compare the two pages and give your feedback.

For what it is worth, I very strongly prefer design 2.  If you agree with me, I would be happy to have your votes added to mine.  If you don’t agree, you will surely want to submit a counter vote.

I found I had to print the pages out to do a comparison, but printing page 1 did not include a whole column of data on the right hand side, so the visual effect of the page on the printed copy is distorted.

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Mea Culpa

Over a decade ago, I started my website, Bobbie’s Genealogy Classroom.  Using simple web page creation software  included with one of the browsers I used the website to provide links for my genealogy students so they didn’t have to scribble urls in class.

Over time it grew.  I reorganized it.  It grew more.  I switched from simple software to Dreamweaver.   It grew and I reorganized it again.  But I have never kept up with keeping the pages current and complete

In addition to the usual impediments of time, energy and diverted attention spans, it takes me longer and longer to locate and identify free, useful content on the web.

When I began, there was limited genealogy content on the web and  a huge amount of it was not only free,  the pages were without ads.  I usually did not link to sites that were cluttered with ads.  (Kimberly Powell’s posts in About.com were an exception because they were so well written.)    Over the years, the number of pages exploded, most carrying advertising and many of the older pages languished.  Large websites, especially those maintained by institution,  are often complicated and it can be difficult to ferret out the pages that contain pertinent information.   Our information highway is clogged with out of date information, dead links and ubiquitous advertising.  Excepting the advertising, I contribute to this.  I apologize.

I am selective about what I link to  and it takes a great deal of time to assess the quality of a page in a non subscription site.   I have three basic criteria:

  1. How well the page is maintained: is new information added? Are bad links corrected? Is it, in other words current and complete — a criteria I fail at on my own pages.
  2. Is the quality of the information good?
  3. Is the page so cluttered with advertising that it is difficult to use?  Worse, is it just generic information thrown up to provide a billboard for advertising?

So I will continue with an advertising free website.  I will continue to include only information that I think is especially helpful. Unfortunately, I see no way I will be able to maintain the currency of the pages as well as I should.   But I promise to do the best I can.

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Considering SLIG 2015

SLIG (Salt Lake City Institute of Genealogy) is being held January 12-16, 2015.  Why think about it now?  Because registration begins June 14th 9 a.m. MT (11 a.m. ET) and it fills up fast!

If you sign up to attend, you will elect to take one of twelve tracks offered.  Each track  is a full week class, taught by expert instructors.  It is not cheap (at least by my standards) – almost $400 — but it is worth it if you want to advance your skills in one of the areas being taught.  An added bonus is time to research at the Family History Library.   And there is a bargain rate at the hotels for attendees.

Perhaps I will see you there!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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