With the imminent release of the 1940 U.S. Census, the need for volunteer indexers on FamilySearch has never been greater. Many current U.S. based indexers will turn their attention to the census project leaving the other indexing projects of worldwide records with fewer indexers.
The records indexed on the FamilySearch site are free to all visitors and cover records from all over the world. Any and all volunteers are welcome to join in the task of making the billions of records in the collection easily searchable via the indexing projects.
Prior to late February 2012, indexing could only be done on a computer, but FamilySearch has now released a indexing app for IOS and Android phones and devices. Why waste time playing Angry Birds when you could be using your commuter, standing in line, waiting for meeting, break time doing something that counts and benefits people everywhere?
Our children and grandchildren are all using the app on their phones. They report that they are amazed how many records they index on an average day in the snippets of otherwise unproductive time that flow through everyone’s life. Who knew you could finish two or three batches of pages while waiting in a doctor’s office? That wasn’t a very good question. We all know how much time we waste in doctors offices reading stale old magazines with content that we only pretend to like. Why not spend that time doing something that matters?
At home, we frequently find ourselves settling in for a night of TV even though we all know how well-written and enthralling TV shows are today. You don’t even have to look at the screen most of the time to keep up with the story line, let alone sit with focused attention lest we miss the ‘plot’.
Why not sit your laptop, iPad or tablet comfortably on your lap and put the 80% of your brain cycles that are typically anesthetized by the idle prattle emanating from your widescreen to good use?
Download the Indexing app for your PC, Mac , IOS or Android device and score points that don’t go away just because you’ve powered your computer down.
Don’t worry that you’ll struggle learning how to index.. The tool is very easy to use. Anyone can be a successful indexer. Young folks on our area frequently challenge the ‘old folks’ to match their substantial indexing numbers. Sometimes, we actually beat them even though they grew up with faster typing skills that any of us have achieved. Of course, they love the bragging rights of kicking their parents and grandparents tails in these friendly ‘contests’ too.
How many records are in the famous granite vaults of the Family History Group of the LDS Church? Billions. That’s Billions with a capital “B” and more are being added constantly in addition to all of the records that partnering entities are adding to the indexed pool.
I’ve been through the granite vaults and have seen the seemingly endless rows of microfilm cabinets inside the mountain vaults. I remember how small the collection was when the vaults first opened as compared to the expansive holdings there today. It truly is a staggering sight for any historian or genealogist.
Fortunately, you don’t have to travel to Utah to see them. FamilySearch has created these excellent videos that show not only the vaults but the entire indexing process.
Join in the fun. Challenge the young folks in your family, church and organizations with indexing goals. Explain how you are going to beat them at their own texting (indexing) game. Teach them how to use and not loose those heretofore wasted snippets of unproductive time in their lives. Help them be a part of something that counts and from which everyone will benefit for centuries to come.
Challenge the adults in your circles to join in the opportunity to do something so right that takes so little effort.
Kick the tires and light the fires. Take the FamilySearch Indexing tool for a test drive today and see how easy it is to use the tool and index a historical record.