Monday, March 19, 2012

An Avalanche Of Genealogy Data:

The title of this post is my best efforts to catch your attention as to what happens daily in Family Search.

First of all,what is family search? The answer - it's primary function is a place to search all of the records the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints publishes for the public to access at no cost.

This is no small initiative. For example, at the current rate, there are 1.2 million records being published every day. So if you didn't find your ancestor yesterday - try again today. That would qualify as an avalanche, right? Soon that number should jump to 1.6 million published per day.

Over the years the church has microfilmed billions of records and stored them in the Granite mountain vault. These records are part of what is being published.

But that isn't all. For example, over the last 10 years or so the Church has made great strides with the Italian Government leading to a contract to digitize and publish all of the Italian records for the last 650 years. At current rates this is a 6 year project with much of it already published on Family Search.

Some other current online facts:
  There are 550 million images online.
  There are 1.75 billion searchable records.
  There are 1.29 billion searchable names.
  There are 1907 record collections.

Due to the systems in place it only takes 2 to 4 days from click of the camera to published online.

There are 210 camera crews working around the world. 

When we contract with a government such as Italy, a copy of the work is provided that government.  

As you might surmise this is a serious commitment by the LDS Church and volunteers. 
  •   There 129,000 indexing volunteers, 20% of them not members of the church. With the push for        indexing the 1940 census we are targeting this number to move to 180,000 indexing volunteers.
  •   There are 890 Church Service missionaries serving part time, just in this part of the mission. 
  •   There are 140 full time missionaries on this project.
  •   There are 80 Contractors.
  •   There are 225 full time employees, 16 of them engineers working on the records pipeline.
In summary, our grandparents are coming out of obscurity and into the light.

Also, If you want to help you are most needed to either serve a mission or volunteer. Indexing volunteers are most needed. Members of the LDS Church may even apply to serve a mission at home. More on that by clicking here:

Each week that Kathleen and I serve here we become more amazed at the marvelous works we discover.

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