THE IGI RECALLED AS A VALUABLE RESOURCE
FEBRUARY 10, 2013
Back in the old days, researching the International Genealogical Index (IGI) involved pulling the Microfiche cards and reading them on the Microfiche reader. Then it progressed to CDs and finally, thanks to modern day technology, it is available on the Internet.
We used to refer to the IGI, developed in 1969, as the Lost Soul’s Index. It was where we could view a database originally developed by the Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (LDS) for keeping track of their church ordnances of those deceased. Some of the information was from various microfilm sources containing baptisms, marriages and death records throughout the years 1500 through 1885. Another part of it came from personal family data submitted to the church.
I attended the January Legacy User Group meeting where mentor Joanne Corney spoke about the IGI and its value to the genealogical community. To researchers during the years before the Internet, it was a treasured resource. It is now available at https://familysearch.org/search/collection/igi.
Joanne also demonstrated to the attendees how to enter citations in their Legacy Family Tree database.
Both the monthly User Group and the Legacy Family Tree database are available without charge. Attendees fill the room from as far away as Bonham, Denton, Sherman and Wichita Falls. The User Group meets the fourth Tuesday of each month (except December) from 1:30-3:30 downstairs in the genealogy room. Joanne offers additional or hands-on help from 3:30-5:30 p.m. for those wanting additional help with using Legacy Family Tree, whether it is getting started or solving a problem. For more information, contact Joanne Corney at firstname.lastname@example.org.
GENEALOGY LIBRARY’S NEW MICROFILM MACHINE: The genealogy library has a new microfilm machine that Cheryl Smith says can do all kinds of great things when viewing microfilm or microfiche and it is simple to use. She says the images are cleaner because of its ability to lighten or darken the contrast. Cheryl goes on to say, “You can watch the images zoom by while looking for the page you need. The instructions for saving the image, enlarging, moving the image around, etc. pop up on the screen. When you move the cursor over any button a message will pop up to tell you how it works. This machine only saves images so make sure you bring your flash drive with you. The instructions are simple, but Cheryl says that you can ask for a demonstration the next time you are in the library.
SSD INDEX UNDER ATTACK AGAIN: The newly elected administration is attacking the Social Security Death Index (SSDI) again according to the article in the January 30 issue of Legal Genealogist, www.legalgenealogist.com/blog/2013/01/30/news-from-the-ssdi-front/. It states that a bill introduced by a Florida congressional representative would close the index for three years after the person passed away. It goes on to name someone from our own district who “has specifically targeted genealogists as The Bad Guys in the fight against identity theft.” The article names Sam Johnson, (R-Texas), chair of the House Ways & Means Committee’s Subcommittee on Social Security. Closing the SSDI for three years or more will affect researchers in the genealogical community. It will certainly affect me. Will it affect you?
NON-GENDER SPECIFIC NAMES: When you hear the name Shirley, Doris or Lynn, do you immediately think female? Genealogists need to be more careful about this trap. I keep a database on my computer of non-gender specific names just in case. When you see the following given names, think before you automatically assume the gender Calvert, Chris, Gene, Sean, Shirley, and Willie. Calvert is the name of a female reporter on Fox news. Our friends Chris and Chris, male and female, are a married couple. Gene is a girlfriend in Richardson. Rethink jumping to conclusions before checking further for correct gender.
REUNION NOW AVAILABLE ON iPhone: Leister Productions, Inc. just announced Reunions for Macintosh genealogy program is now available for iPhone, iPod touch and iPad for a fee. Read more at www.leisterpro.com/.
ARMENIA ARCHIVES GOES DIGITAL: In January, Armenpress announced that Armenia’s archival records would be available this year as a digital subscription. The article is available at http://armenpress.am/eng/news/705967/national-archives-of-armenia-turns-digital.html.
Brenda Kellow has a bachelor's degree in history, teaches, and lectures on genealogy. Before retiring to publish her family’s histories in 2007, Brenda held certification as a Certified Genealogist and as a certified Genealogical Instructor. Send reunion announcements, books to review, and genealogy queries to: TracingOurRoots@gmail.com.