RootsTech 2014

Some people eat, sleep and chew gum, I do genealogy and write...

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Update on the millions upon millions of records being added online

One of the overwhelming developments of access to the Internet is the unimaginably huge number of digitized genealogically valuable source records that are being added online every day. I don't think anyone can keep up with all of the new records becoming available, but it is always something that researchers should become aware of on a regular basis. From my viewpoint, bloggers do a pretty good job of pointing out the new records and this is one strong point for becoming involved in the genealogical blogging community.

For a very good reason, a lot of the attention in the genealogical community concerning newly added records focuses on the biggest online genealogy database programs. Here is a brief update on each of the larger programs and their recent additions. Bear in mind that this list will be out dated within a few days as even more millions of records are added to these huge websites.

FamilySearch.org
Here is a screenshot of the updated and newly added collections as of the date of this post:


You can see the latest list of newly added or updated collections by going to FamilySearch.org and clicking on the Search link at the top of the page. Then you scroll down to the Browse All Published Collections link near the bottom of the page and when you get the list of all the published collections, you can click on the "Last Updated" column head and the list will sort by date entered. This is actually a lot easier than it sounds to find.

It is hard to pick any particular new collection. If you have relatives in that place and time, you think it is great. If not, then you don't really care right now. I am sure FamilySearch has a well-thought-out plan for adding new collections, but in the last three days there are records from five different countries and four different states, and WWII Draft Records from the United States. This is definitely a place that you need to look at regularly.

Ancestry.com
Now Ancestry.com also has a place to check out all the newly added records. The key here is going to the Card Catalog and sorting the list by date added. Here is a screen shot showing the results of sorting by date added:


One notable new addition is Pennsylvania, Death Certificates, 1906-1924 with over 2 million entries. Just as I stated above for FamilySearch, if your ancestors happened to live in the place during the time period the new records may be extremely helpful. Otherwise, keep looking. The first five entries on this list were published on Ancestry.com in the last three days before the date of this post. So both Ancestry.com and FamilySearch.org are making a lot of new records available.

Unless they make a point of mentioning new records in their blog, MyHeritage.com just continues to add the records and make them searchable for every person in your family tree. I presently have over 7000 record matches available plus all of the thousands of additional records that will be found with the Record Detective. The number of records and the number of matches is truly impressive, especially with MyHeritage.com's high degree of accuracy. You benefit most from all these records if you have a family tree hosted on MyHeritage.com

Here is a screen shot of the first part of the records found for me already:


It is very interesting that each of these websites seem to be publishing a lot of records and every so often, there are some records that move me along with information about my own ancestors. The cumulative effect of all these records is that we have an ongoing opportunity to find even more information about our ancestors. Can you imagine trying to travel to all these different places to find your own records?

This wonderful website with a focus on records from the UK and Ireland is also adding new records regularly. But there does not seem to be an easy way just to see a list of the newest records. There is a list of all the records with a suggestion: "so check back regularly to stay up to date!" Here is a screenshot of the top of the entire list:


For some time now, Mocavo.com has been adding 1000 new databases every day. They have a way to look at the new content every day. Here is a screenshot of the startup page with the link to the new content as shown by the arrow:


You can also browse all the records. Here is a screenshot of the browse records page with the first few records showing. You can see that there are 323,620 databases as of the date of this post.


Looking at all the records isn't as intimidating as it might seem since you can filter out any records you are not interested in seeing. 

As you can see, there are a huge number of new records being added daily by just these larger websites. Think of how many more are being added to other websites. 

5 comments:

  1. Through a dna test I was contacted by a French cousin. I provided the village the Vigneron family left—and she provided me a six generation ancestry at geneanet.org.
    And a family mystery as well. onomastics
    Quite a few of my American ggg grandparents showed as well. One maternal French family was behind their paywall. Houssmann Moch of Haguenau, Alsace. For later...
    Created an account and uploaded a .ged from MacFamilyTree I've made from a paper trail. Some of the notes appear to have shifted individuals. It's a different system of which I'm unfamiliar.
    All my American trails lead to NW Europe; 81% UK, 8% Ashkenazi...
    Your thoughts, Sir?

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    1. One thing you didn't mention is whether or not any of this information is supported by sources. Are there any? I would be looking closely at the sources rather than depending on a user submitted family tree. Thanks for the comment.

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  2. Records are behind a paywall. What I'm uncertain about, is, if the extensive family trees created by these Francophones are provided, documented, for a fee. ? If that IS the business model?
    It is unlike websites I currently subscribe.

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    1. I knew that France had this system. It is very similar to the UK and Scotland. You can look up the records but must pay to get any copies. Sometimes all you can see is an index and you can't really tell whether or not the person named is your ancestor or not. Do a Google search on the name of the record and see if someone has a free copy somewhere else online. You may end up having to pay the fees. Depending on the number of documents you want to view, it may be less expensive to join for a year's subscription than pay for individual documents.

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