One notable example of the attitude towards books and other printed material is the digitization effort of the FamilySearch.org website. Historical Record Collections are highlighted and the subject of a huge indexing project. However, there is almost no mention of the ongoing genealogical book digitization project and many people are surprised to know that the Books section of the website exists. The books are not incorporated into the Historical Record Collections, neither are they offered as record hints to users of the Family Tree notwithstanding the fact that currently there are 277, 304 digitized items in the collection in over 120 different languages. In fact, the list includes 13,823 items of undetermined language origin.
Here are the numbers of books digitized from the various contributing libraries.
- Family History Library (194,071)
- Allen County Public Library (31,823)
- Family History Archive - Internet Archive (30,803)
- Houston Public Library - Clayton Library Center for Genealogical Research (4,390)
- Mid-Continent Public Library - Midwest Genealogy Center (3,958)
- Houston Public Library - Houston Metropolitan Research Center - Texas Room (2,766)
- Onondaga County Public Library (2,143)
- Historical Society of Pennsylvania (1,481)
- Brigham Young University Harold B. Lee Library (1,173)
The items are broken down as follows:
The "Other" category seems to include an awful lot of books. Granted, many of these books are old, but in genealogy, old is good. Many of these books were written by people who were contemporaries with the very ancestors you are searching for.
Of course there are huge online collections of more digital books containing information about subject vital to genealogical research. The vast online collections on MyHeritage.com have recently added a major collection of books and other publications consisting presently of 91,470,246 pages in 447,870 sources. These books and publications have been hand selected by MyHeritage.com to contain valuable genealogical information. This almost doubles the number of books and other published material in the FamilySearch.org collection. In addition, MyHeritage.com is searching every page of every book and producing record hints for every person in the users' family trees and translating the information when possible. Due to this and other additions to MyHeritage.com, my record hints have jumped to 21,761.
Currently I have 1,479 matches in published sources. What treasures are there for your research in these collections?