Online Volunteer Indexers Sought to Improve Select Collections
SALT LAKE CITY—FamilySearch announced today that it is joining forces with findmypast.com, The Origins Network, and Intelligent Image Management—companies that specialize in providing online access to British family history resources—to make significant British historical record collections more broadly available online. The first joint initiative seeks to publish online indexes to censuses for England and Wales from 1841 to 1901. The 1841 and 1861 Census indexes are the first targeted under the agreement and are accessible now at FamilySearch.org and findmypast.com.
In the agreement, FamilySearch, in conjunction with The Origins Network, will provide digital images for the 1851, 1871, and 1881 Censuses. It will also extend the 1871 Census index. Findmypast.com will provide FamilySearch copies of its English and Welsh Census indexes from 1841 to 1901. The Federation of Family History Societies will help complete the index for the 1851 Census.
Initially, users of FamilySearch.org will be able to do a free search by record type, given name, surname, age, gender, place of birth, and relationship to head of household (relationship was not recorded in the 1841 Census). The free search capability at FamilySearch.org will include additional fields of data in the future. Users will be able to search the full indexes and view original images for free at FamilySearch’s 4,500 Family History Centers or for a nominal fee at findmypast.com.
The addition of findmypast.com’s English and Welsh Census Collections to FamilySearch’s online databases will increase the use of the valuable record sets and increase traffic to findmypast.com.
Jay L. Verkler, Managing Director for FamilySearch, said, “The new images and additional information provided by FamilySearch will significantly enhance and improve the overall English and Welsh Census collection. And its addition to FamilySearch.org will increase awareness of the rich Web resources of FamilySearch affiliates and the likelihood of success for FamilySearch.org patrons doing British research.”
Elaine Collins, Commercial Director at findmypast.com, commented, “Findmypast.com is delighted to be working with FamilySearch to launch the British Census Collection online. Censuses are the core building blocks for family historians and genealogists alike, and now, at last, here is the definitive version. This has been a very exciting project for us, and we look forward to collaborating with FamilySearch in the future to bring other important collections to an ever wider international audience.”
FamilySearch will utilize its impressive online community of volunteer indexers to add more fields of data to select censuses. When finished, the improved census indexes will be available on FamilySearch.org, findmypast.com, and Originsnetwork.com. Individuals interested in volunteering as online indexers for British historical projects can do so at FamilySearch.org.
Ian Galbraith, CEO of The Origins Network and Upal Rahman, President of Intelligent Image Management (IIM) Inc. said, "The FamilySearch England and Wales Census project is clearly a milestone initiative in the history of genealogical research. It heralds a new era of easier accessibility to a mountain (literally!) of genealogical material available hitherto only to the privileged few, if at all. We are delighted to be working with FamilySearch and proud that they have chosen for the FamilySearch Website the 1841 and 1871 UK censuses—the most accurate available—which The Origins Network and IIM jointly developed."