Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Family History: Digital Microfilm

The National Archives | DocumentsOnline | Advanced Search
Go to the National Archives at:
Click on Documents Online
Click on Advanced Search in the Quick Search Box

Unclick all the categories except Digital Microfilm

In Media types, unclick everything except Text

Click on Search

On the next page click on Digital Microfilm

191 files

The National Archives | the Catalogue use this to understand the Series details - NB only part of a series on line

New Coastguard Force ADM 175/


ADM Records of the Admiralty, Naval Forces, Royal Marines, Coastguard, and related bodies

Division within ADM Records of the Coastguard

Record Summary

Admiralty, predecessors and successors: Coastguard and predecessors: Records of Service
Covering dates 1816-1947
Availability Available in digital format and microform only
Held by
The National Archives, Kew

WO 144/


WO Records created or inherited by the War Office, Armed Forces, Judge Advocate General, and related bodies

Division within WO Records of the Armed Forces from commands, headquarters, regiments and corps

Record Summary

War Office: Inter-Allied Armistice Commission: War Diary, and Despatches of Chief of British Delegation
Covering dates 1918-1920
Availability Available in digital format and microform only

WO 338/

WO Records created or inherited by the War Office, Armed Forces, Judge Advocate General, and related bodies

Division within WO Armed forces service records

Record Summary

War Office: Officers' Services, First World War, Index to Long Number Papers
Covering dates 1870-1922

Wales Genealogy

Wales Genealogy - FamilySearchWiki: "The International Genealogical Index for Wales can be difficult to use unless you understand a few points. The Welsh names in the International Genealogical Index have come from two main sources: a systematic extraction of the christenings, births, and marriages in church and chapel records and entries submitted by individual researchers. The Parish and Vital Records List is a list of the records and time periods that were systematically extracted. This list is available in print or microfiche formats at the Family History Library and in the Family History Centers.

Many Welsh people did not have surnames in much of the period covered by the International Genealogical Index. They used patronymics. For an explanation of patronymics (see the 'Names, Personal' section of this outline). Other families had established surnames. In 1813, the Established Church in Wales started using a standard, printed form for their parish registers, which included a column for surname. This made it relatively easy to determine if the family was using patronymics. Before that date, there wasn’t a surname column, so there was no way to determine if 'William the son of John Thomas' would grow up to be 'William John,' 'William Jones,' 'William Thomas,' or by another name.

Welsh naming customs created a need to standardize the extraction of names for the International Genealogical Index. . . . .

Due to the intricacies of early Welsh land tenure and the unchallenged jurisdiction of tribal laws, a tribe member, upon reaching 14 years of age, had to establish his freeborn status with the tribe. Knowing his genealogy for at least nine generations was required for him to get his inheritance. Many Welsh pedigree collections have been produced from this tradition.

The Family History Library has some collections of Welsh genealogical material, including published and unpublished collections of family histories and lineages as well as the research files of prominent genealogists. . . . .

Since most persons with the same surname are not related, you may have to do some research to connect your family to a family listed in one of these sources. - If You Are Researching Welsh Ancestors...: "The second interesting feature of Welsh research is Welsh descent may be either unknown or difficult to prove. Emigrants from Wales have been “lost” in their new homelands, lumped together with the English by immigration officials in North America and elsewhere. Records indicate that of the British immigrants arriving in America in the 1860s, 2% or about 4,000 were Welsh, yet the census of 1870 reveals that nearly 30,000 stated they were born in Wales.

Similar disparities occur in numbers for the 1700s. In other words, family tradition can be at odds with official documents and some records, such as census returns, can be different from immigration records." - Research Helps:

Wales 1974 to 1996 County Structure [Description]
Wales Country/City Maps Register [Description] [PDF]
Wales Historical Background [Description] [PDF]
Wales Post-1996 County Structure [Description]
Wales Pre-1974 County Structure [Description]
Wales Research Outline [Description] [PDF] 34130
Wales, How to Find a Map [Description] [PDF]
Wales, How to Find a Place Name [Description] [PDF]
Wales, How to Find Compiled Sources [Description] [PDF]
Wales, How to Find Information About the Place Where Your Ancestor Lived [Description] [PDF]

replacing the older research guides

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Internet Archive Wayback Machine

Internet Archive Wayback Machine: "Searched for

44 Results

* denotes when site was updated.
Material typically becomes available here 6 months after collection"
so my pages will survive the aol shut down of home pages

Monday, October 06, 2008

Shoebox Genealogy

Shoebox Genealogy: "Good News: Insider information on NFS development!
Well, I've often been accused of being a downer, but I do have some great news about the development of NFS, real insider stuff you won't get anywhere else! Don't worry, there's some questioning and wild speculation at the end . . . geez, don't think I'm getting all sappy on you.

I recently received an email from a Family History Department employee who will remain unnamed, responding to my solicited letter to Elder Maynes, the General Authority in charge of FamilySearch, regarding improvements that professional genealogists would like to see in NFS (not that I requested a response, but it's a nice gesture nonetheless)."

Sunday, October 05, 2008

Google and TGN

Google stays mum on plans for public documents, points to OCR hurdle | The Industry Standard:
"However, Sullivan described a major drawback related to census forms and many other public records: Handwritten documents are notoriously difficult to read using optical character recognition (OCR) software.

Sullivan described old census forms from the 18th, 19th, and early 20th centuries as 'a hugely diverse collection of handwritten records,' in the sense that the handwriting styles and the quality of the source documents varied greatly. Remember, census forms from 1930 and earlier were filled out by a multitude of individuals going door to door across America, and their handwriting styles varied greatly. OCR tools, which are used to convert books and other printed documents into online text that can be searched and indexed, are 'not even close' to being able to read handwritten records, Sullivan says.

So how did The Generations Network import the data from millions of old census forms into its online database? Sullivan says the company spent about $75 million over 10 years to build its 'content assets' including the census data, and much of that cost went into partnering with Chinese firms whose employees read the data and entered it into's database. The Chinese staff are specially trained to read the cursive and other handwriting styles from digitized paper records and microfilm. The task is ongoing with other handwritten records, at a cost of approximately $10 million per year, he adds.

When asked about Google, Sullivan said, "We view that their mission and ours is quite complimentary." However, he declined to discuss the nature of communications between the two companies."

and - Google Search is useful to find the static pages for obscure databases and much more