Genealogy from the perspective of a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon, LDS)

Sunday, February 16, 2014

What is Indexing's Priority?

In a recent blog post, the CEO of FamilySearch, Dennis Brimhall wrote a post entitled, "Where Does Indexing Fit?" He points out that:

Indexing can’t be separated from the rest of family history any more than you can pick up one end of a stick and not the other. They are inseparably connected to one another in a continuous cycle of family history opportunities, which turns our hearts to our ancestors and leads to the ordinances of the temple.
 He goes on to quote Elder David A. Bednar of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles
To truly understand this principle, it is instructive to listen to the words of Elder David A. Bednar of the Quorum of Twelve Apostles spoken during the worldwide leadership broadcast in 2011:

“There's one work,” he explained. “Missionary work is proclaiming the gospel to people who are not yet under covenant. Redeeming the dead is providing ordinances and covenants. Perfecting the saints is the work of inviting people to honor ordinances and covenants. The same work in different spheres, but it's all one work.”
I would note that a significant number of the Historical Record Collections are "image only" and that of the 33 collections uploaded in the past week, 21 of the collections were "Browse Only" meaning they have only images and no indexes. In addition, many of the others are only partially indexed. Without indexes, the records are "invisible" to a name search. Each of the "Browse Only" record collections have to be examined page-by-page. In oder to make all of these records available to be searched, the indexes are absolutely necessary.

Of course, the indexes are not the end of any search. It is always a much better method of searching for ancestors to spend the time necessary to examine the original records when they are available. I recommend reading and sharing the article by Dennis Brimhall.

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