Wednesday, May 20, 2015
A Closer Look at FamilySearch Community Trees
I recently wrote about the addition of the Community Trees website to the Genealogies section of FamilySearch.org. The Genealogies section of the website is located from a link in the pull-down menu below the "Search" tab at the top of each of the pages of the website. There are four huge collections in the Genealogies section. Each of the four collections has its own idiosyncrasies.
In this post, I am focusing on the Community Trees section. This is the only one of the four sections that has been and continues to be operated as a separate website, quasi-independently of FamilySearch.org. The complete website has a number of different sections as shown on the startup page above. One unique section contains both the audio recordings and transcripts of oral histories containing records of 5,379, 468 individuals, mainly from the Pacific area islands and Africa. There are presently 13, 968 different sources. Here is a screenshot showing the top 30 places where the oral histories were recorded:
I am not sure that the people living in these areas or who have immigrated from these area are aware of this unique resource. The Oral Histories section the Community Tree website also has an interesting collection of headstone records. The records on Community Trees are exhaustive and complete for the areas covered, but they are also very specific and limited in their coverage. Dismissing the websites because you do not immediately see its scope of its usefulness, is a mistake.
Some of the core collections of the Community Trees involve huge accumulations of sourced members of European royal families. This is a resource many people could well take advantage of, especially considering the number of ancestral lines on the FamilySearch.org Family Tree purport to include royalty. It might be interesting for those people who have copies of copies of records to see what is and what is not in the sourced records. You may want to take a look at the following collection: Royal and Noble Families of Europe.
It is possible that adding the ability to search this valuable website to FamilySearch.org may increase interest in the actual website. I suggest that you review the scope of the website before making any searches.