This is what is on the LDS site under frequently asked questions reguarding the IGI and Ancestral file.

Ancestral File™- One of the largest collections of lineage-linked records. These pedigree charts and family group records were submitted to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.The Ancestral File is info submitted by Non-member genealogists. IGI International Genealogical Index® - The largest collection of individual records with marriage, birth, death, spouse, and parent information. Information is from individual research and extracted from original records.The IGI is info submitted by Members of the Mormon church, sealed ancestors, which is part of their religion. The members got their info from a source, not always named and not always 100% accurate. (Here is an IGI tip : Give the region World Miscellaneous a search for your dead ends. It turns out that if during extraction or data entry the location was spelled incorrectly, absent or otherwise did not conform to a standard, the record was dumped into this category. I recently found some Irish Ancestors whose location was listed as "Presbyterian Church". Web Sites - Thousands of web sites that have been reviewed by volunteers and categorized to help researchers quickly find relevant family history information.) Pedigree Resource File - A collection of compiled pedigrees from patrons of this Internet service, from printed family histories, and from other sources including government archives. Family History Library Catalog™ - Descriptions of the Family History Library's extensive international collection of records, including microfilmed government and church records, family histories, and books. Most of these records may be searched at a Family History Center™.

If one would like to verify the information, they have only to go to the Family History Catalog compact disk (or the microfiche which has the same type of info, only not updated the last few years.) My personal preference is to check the computer first and get a couple of town names from the Ancestral File and the IGI. Then I check the Library Catalog. If the town does not appear there, I do not give up! Next I go to the Library Catalog on microfiche. On the first microfiche of every country is a listing of the towns and how they are indexed on the microfilm. This is **very** important. The records are indexed country first, then province or county, then little town. For example, for two years I found nothing at the FHC. I kept looking for the town in the microfiche. Truchtersheim is not indexed first. I found the record under: **France, Bas Rhin, Truchtersheim** The index at the top only lists France, Bas Rhin, Gundershoffen. The microfiche stops at the beginning of the next microfiche. So check 2 or 3 microfiche before and after where you think it might be. Many times I have found the info there, instead of the computer. Once I have a reference number, I can go back to the computer and usually find the same or even more updated information. I don't know why this works, but I am not willing to question my luck at this point. I am now into the 1600's on 2 lines thanks to this method. helpful hints on using the IGI Thanks to: Jeff & Cheryl Woodall For batch number intructions try

. There is an article in Global Gazette Sep 17,1999 Vol III Number 17 in the English & Welch Roots column. Fawne, the author gives good background info as well as step-by-step info. following her instructions will eventually take you to the following web site

For those of you who wish to see it here - I've copied the article below from Canada's Family History Magazine >>>WHAT ARE BATCH NUMBERS? Entries in the Church of Latter Day Saints International Genealogy Index - IGI ? - come from two major sources of information: 1. Individual Submissions - Members of the LDS church regularly submit information to the church about families or other specific records. These records are then processed by a computer and a Batch number assigned to them. Often the information has been submitted on an Individual Entry Form or a Family Group Sheet. The entries submitted may or may not tell you the sources the used for the information submitted and do not always include up-to-date addresses or information about the submitters themselves. Each batch number will often have an associated film number assigned to which is the LDS microfilm number containing the image of the original entry form(s). 2. The Name Extraction program - The Extraction Program of the Genealogical Department involves thousands of members of the LDS church, volunteering their time to extract names from parish records and other vital records around the world. The data extracted is then grouped together for processing by a computer. The computer assigns a BATCH NUMBER to each grouping of records submitted. As a result each group of parish records that have been extracted are assigned an overall number. Christening records from the parish are then assigned a "C" at the beginning of the parishes batch number. Marriage records are recorded with a batch number that starts with an "M". If a batch number has leading letters that begin with an M or a C, it usually means they have been extracted from an original record. The information for that record will also provide you with a specific LDS microfilm number for the complete list of the records extracted for that particular "BATCH" of submissions. What this means is that a Batch Number can lead you to extractions of your particular surname for specific parish or church records, for a specific type of vital event during particular time periods covered by the extraction. Most importantly, the Batch number will allow you to search the IGI to identify all entries for a specific parish that may be connected to your family names. Basically, Batch numbers can refine your online search very closely to individual parish event records or other IGI submissions. HOW TO USE BATCH NUMBERS: The easiest way to describe how to use batch numbers (and find them) is to take a specific example from my own family records and walk through the steps. We will use my BILLINGTON family as an example. The family were known to reside for many years in Buckinghamshire in the parish of Monks Risborough. Using this example we can walk through the steps. 1. Go to the main FamilySearch website click on Custom Search. 2. At the Custom Search screen click on IGI search. 3. Within the IGI search page: scroll down and select the REGION you are interested in searching. In this example we are interested in the 'British Isles'. enter the name you are interested in locating. For example BILLINGTON. (You can also narrow the search to start with by entering a given name or time period). I also enter Elizabeth which is the name of my direct ancestor. when the search terms have been entered, click the search button. 4. The IGI results screen in this example displays a number of BILLINGTON entries but I am only interested in the Monks Risborough related entries. Furthermore, I know that my direct ancestor's name is Elizabeth who also had a sister Charlotte. When I click on the result for Charlotte or Elizabeth BILLINGTON Christening entries found in the IGI I discover the BATCH NUMBER for Monks Risborough Christening entries is C109931. With a batch number in hand, I can now refine my IGI search to all occurrences of my BILLINGTON surname within extracted christening records of Monks Risborough Parish Church. - return to the main IGI search screen. 5. Within the IGI search page: scroll down and select the REGION - eg. 'British Isles'. enter the name you are interested in locating - in this instance we still want BILLINGTON. under BATCH NUMBER enter the number C109931. when the search terms have been entered, click the search button. the results screen now lists all BILLINGTON christenings that have been extracted for the parish of Monks Risborough. by clicking on one of the entries you can get further information about the microfilm containing those extractions or the microfilm number for the original parish records. In the case of Monks Risborough Buckinghamshire, The LDS have microfilmed the original parish records held by the Buckinghamshire Record Office in Aylesbury. The microfilm is FHL British Film: 919247. 6. With microfilm number in hand, I can now visit my local Family History Centre and order the microfilm of the original records to verify all information and perhaps find other family entries. 7. I can now go back and search the IGI for other family names in the same parish. As you search using batch numbers you will soon learn that some parishes will have more than one number. The larger the parish the more numbers will be associated with it. This is important because it can help you to experiment with your searching by changing the last digit of the batch number to see if there are any more batches for that parish. In the same way, we initially searched for batch entries for christenings (the batch number began with a C). You can also try searching under the same batch number but substituting an M for marriage record searching. When I use this method of searching for the parish of Monks Risborough I discover 4 marriage entries in the parish for BILLINGTONS. All of whom are connected to my family. HINTS & TIPS -Don't be afraid to experiment when using batch numbers. For example: Try changing the last digit of the batch number: i.e. C109930, C109931, C109932, etc. - Try the different prefix letters with the batch number you have found: i.e. if we have C109931, try M109931, P109931 - Try different combinations of switching prefix codes and the last number: i.e. if we have C109931, try C109930, C109932, C109933 and M109930, M109932, M109933 or P109931. All of these combinations and permutations will not be always be successful However, like most other searching, every now and then you come across a combination or group of records you did not expect! - Frustrations: You can also encounter some frustration when searching. For example you may know there are names in the IGI database that are not showing up when you are searching, one of the most common reasons for this problem is that the "region" locator on the main search screen has returned to the default of "North America". Always be sure and check the region you are asking for each time. There are other times when the search engine is not working properly. This problem could be due to maintenance or the site being overloaded with requests. Simply come back to the site later and it should work. BATCH NUMBER CODES There a number of codes associated with Batch numbers. While we know from our example search that a batch number beginning with C is associated with Christening records, there are other record codes also. A. -An LDS Temple record of the sealing of a wife to her husband. Access to the temple sealing record is limited to the couple's direct descendants and their spouses. C. - An original or printed record of births or christenings extracted as part of the extraction programme. D. - Deceased members or 110 year suspended file E. - Marriage records from the early marriage record extraction project - these were used by the LDS for proxy baptisms and endowments J. - Extraction project M. - Marriages - An original or printed record of marriages extracted as part of the Genealogical Department's extraction programme. The IGI Resource Guide written by the LDS gives the following meanings for letters used as codes in the IGI Events column: A - Adult Christening B - Birth C - Christening D - Death or Burial F - Birth or Christening of first known child (in lieu of marriage date) M - Marriage N - Census S - Miscellaneous: A miscellaneous event may substitute for either a birth or a marriage. W - Will or probate record. There is also another way to find Batch Numbers on the LDS FamilySearch website: From the Custom Search screen, select Family History Library Catalogue. Select a geographic place to search by entering the location you are interested in (such as Buckinghamshire or Buckingham) When the search results are shown, select Church Records - Indexes Choose a church you are interested in and then click on the View Film Notes which will tell you what records the LDS has available and for which years. Now click on View Title Details and you will be given a Batch Number. However, it does not always look exactly like the batch numbers we have discussed. You must convert the number to the form we have been using for searching with batch numbers. To do this simply remove the hyphen in the number. If there is no letter prefix in the number, put an M or a C in front and try searching using the variations discussed previously. Please consider sharing the Batch Numbers you discover in your search with other researchers.


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.. MAILING LISTS. For an index to most user mailing lists hosted by RootsWeb, visit RootsWeb. NEW WEB SITES. Some of these might not yet be accessible. If one that interests you isn't up yet, please check again in a few days or a week. . Note that the ~[tilde] before the account name is required. FOR EXAMPLE, to visit the Caldwell Parish, Louisiana Web page, go to


.. There are "free lookups" on all kinds of CD ROMS
Ancestral Findings

GEDCOMs GATHERING THE GEDCOMS Gather ye rosebuds while ye may, Old Time is still a-flying, And this same flower that smiles to-day To-morrow will be dying. n Robert Herrick (1591-1674) There are about a dozen sites on the internet that are directories or collections of GEDCOM files. This GREAT tip gives an overview of what you'll find and how to use them. GEDCOM files are basically text files of family records which contain "tags" that identify each field of the record and ties the family together. To effectively utilize GEDCOM files you will need a Genealogy Program such as Ultimate Family Tree. These programs allow you to organize your family history and print a variety of reports. They also allow you to import GEDCOMs from other researchers and combine their work with yours. Since these are all the results of other's research, the quality will vary greatly from one to another, and you should confirm any information you find in GEDCOMs before trying to build on the data. There are several libraries of GEDCOM files a vailable on the internet. Additionally, the World Family Tree project sells a number of CD-ROMS of GEDCOM files. Basically, the GEDCOM collections on line, falls into two categories: (1) collections of actual GEDCOM files on line and (2) "Published" GEDCOMS - files or sites which are not in the native GEDCOM format, but are the results of publishing various reports from GEDCOM files. 1. Collections of GEDCOM files on line: GENSERV has a large collection of GEDCOM files available on line. This collection is maintained by Cliff Manis and is accessible at: To participate in his program, Cliff requests that you provide a GEDCOM file of your own, then you may search his files of over 13 million names and retrieve the files of interest to you. Family Tree Maker has several hundred CD-ROMs of GEDCOM files which have been submitted by individuals. Their index may be searched at You may then purchase the CD-ROM with the families of interest to you. (This is by NO means a plug by this website, to go out and buy this product.) Prior to the popularization of the internet in 1996, there were large collections of GEDCOM files available on GEnie, Fidonet, and Delphi. I do not know the status of those files now. Compuserve also has a large collection of GEDCOM files. I do not know the extent of the files available, nor do I believe that they have been indexed. Compuserve members may retrieve the files from their archives. America On Line has a collection of approximately 3,600 GEDCOM files. These are available for download via AOL members. Some 2.4 million names are in the files. They have been partially indexed by Eastern Digital Resources as a part of The Genealogist's Index to the World Wide Web. This index is available on CD-ROM for $12.00. Details are on line at: has a collection of approximately 550 GEDCOM files which are accessible via the WWW or via FTP. These files and their index are maintained by Andrew J. Morris and the files are also indexed on the Genealogist's Index to the World Wide Web mentioned above. Since many of the files are quite large, I recommend accessing the site via FTP. Instructions for access are on their web site: There is a collection of approximately 100 GEDCOM files located at: 2. "Published GEDCOMs" on line. The largest initiative in this area to date is Gene Stark's GENDEX. Gene maintains a site index to all of the individuals who have used his GED2HTML software to publish their family histories on line. The site index is located at: Both of the two sites listed below now have an extensive collection of home pages created by individuals from their own personal GEDCOM files. Various formats and reports are represented. The GEDCOM file itself is not available, but you can contact the owner if you find something of interest. The following two sites do not have the full GEDCOM files accessible, but both contain extensive indexes to their family group sheets which are derived from GEDCOM files. These indexes are a great resource as they also contain dates, location and marriage information. The Grandfather of all GEDCOM collections is the Ancestral File of the LDS church. It is now searchable at You can take a diskette to your local FHC library and retrieve the GEDCOM formatted records that are of interest. The Manhattan bride indexes start at film # 1530494. *Manhattan marriage records, 1866-1937; index.* If you do a film number search with this number #1530494, it will give you all 1455 films. Also the Bronx Bride index is located under *New York, New York (city)-vital records-indexes starting at film # 1983782 ========================================= Marriage Registers Thanks to: Marge Marriages Registers can be seen at an FHC (Mormon) Library. The tape numbers are: Groom Index A-Z 1873-1883 tape 1671684 Groom Index A-M 1884 Groom Index M-Z 1884 1671685 Groom Index A-Z 1885-1888 Marriage Registers 1829 - 1887 are on Tapes 1671673 through 1671683. (Check these out at the FHC as although they are alphabetized sometimes a year can be split up between two tapes.) ---------------------------- HINTS FOR PRESERVING FAMILY COLLECTIONS New York State Library - Genealogy 1.The best protection for your books, papers, photographs, and prints is a "safe" environment: moderate temperature and relative humidity, clean air and good air circulation, no natural or fluorescent light, and good housekeeping. 2.Avoid powerful sources of heat, damp, and pollution; don't store your valuable books, photos, and papers in attics or basements or near water sources like washing machines or bathrooms. Think about what's in the room above your heirlooms, too. 3.Heat causes damage. Don't hang valuable objects over radiators, heat-producing appliances or the fireplace. books you want to read 20 years from now shouldn't be shelved on the mantle, the window sill or the radiator. 4.Light causes fading and other damage. Keep photos and art (prints, watercolors, and other works on paper) in the dark as much as possible. Don't put valuable books and paper where they'll get direct sun or bright light of any kind. Hallways or other rooms without windows are best. Install and use shades and heavy curtains where you can't avoid windows. 5.Use a museum-quality (fully "acid-free") mat and frame to display any valuable photo or artwork -- even children's drawings. Indoor pollution is a growing problem in energy- conscious spaces with good insulation, and causes rapid damage to paper. The glass or plastic glazing of a frame will keep pollution and dirt away, and the item's edges will not be damaged by handling or tacks. 6.If you want your wedding pictures (or photos of any event) to last for your grandchildren, have the photographer take a roll of black-and-white photos. Video, color slides and most color prints have a limited life expectancy. 7.If you want to keep a clipping from the newspaper for the longterm, have it photocopied on to buffered paper (e.g. Xerox XXV Century Bond or Howard Permalife). The copy will last far longer than the original. 8.Letters, clippings, and other documents you want to preserve should be stored unfolded in buffered folders. Folding and unfolding breaks paper and can cause damage as items are removed and replaced. If you can't find buffered folders, use a sheet of buffered paper (e.g. Xerox XXV Century Bond or Howard Permalife) at the front and back of a folder. 9.When storing photos in an album, use "photo" or "archival" mounting corners (available from photography suppliers or stamp dealers), not glues or self-sealing plastic, which can stick to or react with your pictures. 10.To remove the musty smell from old books, make sure they are dry. Put them in a cool, dry space for a couple of days or put them outside on a table in the sun on a dry, breezy day for a couple of hours. If the musty smell remains, put them in an open container (e.g. polyethylene pail, box) inside a large, closed container (e.g. clean, dry garbage pail, box) with an open box of baking soda or a pot-pourri. Do not allow the deodorizer to touch the books. Leave for a few days in a cool place, checking once a day to make sure no mold is growing. Remove to a safe storage environment. 11.To remove staples or old paperclips from documents (especially if the fastener is rusty), slide a very thin piece of stiff plastic (e.g. polyester, polypropylene) under the fastener on both sides of the document. Slide the paperclip off the plastic or use a pair of tweezers or a thin knife to bend the ends of the staple up and pry it out. The plastic will protect the paper from abrasion and your tools. Staple pullers tear paper. These hints were produced by the Northeast Document Conservation Center, a regional, not-for-profit organization founded in 1973 to specialize in the conservation treatment of paper and related artifacts such as books, maps, and photographs. The Center provides microfilming and consulting services to libraries, museums, and historical societies and is a source of telephone assistance in the event of an emergency affecting paper-based collections. They welcome inquiries. Their address is: Northeast Document Conservation Center 100 Brickstone Square Andover, MA 01810-1494 Last updated on March 24, 1997/dvm Comments: National Standard for storing prints and film STORAGE TIPS The American National Standard for storing prints and film: Black and White Film and Prints Medium term storage:20-50% RH with maximum temperature of 77 degrees F Extended term storage: 20-50% RH with maximum temperature of 70 degrees F or 20-50% RH with maximum temperature of 50 degrees F Color Film and Prints Medium term storage: 10-50% RH and maximum temperature of 77 degrees F Extended term storage: 20-30% RH and maximum temperature of 35 degrees F or 20-50% RH and maximum temperature of 15 degrees F *Medium term=less than 10 years *Extended term=permanent (RH=relative humidity) Store your collection in appropriate envelopes, sleeves, albums, and boxes. These enclosures make photographs last longer because they protect from light, dust, and handling. Paper has advantages for storing photographic materials. Its opacity protects images from light. However, items must be removed to be seen, increasing the chance of mishandling and abrasion. A soft, smooth paper can be used to interleave photographic prints that are not placed in individual sleeves to protect the surface. Board, like paper, can be manufactured to be free of acids. Lignin-free board is recommended for storage of photographic materials because of its greater purity. Storage boxes made of barrier board should be study enough to support their contents and have reinforced corners. Albums may be the preferred storage of your family pictures. It is important to purchase archival quality, where the paper, page protectors and the mounting system are all engineered to protect the photograph. Vinyl pages and some magnetic photo albums are unacceptable for the storage of prints. They are recongnized by their oily feel and smell, and they release chemicals that will react with photographic materials to cause staining and deterioration. Library Home | University Home Maintained by: Last Modified: Friday, 23-Oct-98 11:22:59 EDT © 1997 by the Rector and Visitors of the University of Virginia University of Virginia / Charlottesville, Virginia / 22903 ----------------------------------------------- GENEASEARCH provides tools for genealogy research on the internet. There are free listings of society and individual's books available, free look ups, beginner's guide, announcements of new and updated sites, and links to thousands of genealogy sites. ---------------------------- Dating Photographs RETURN TO NEWBIE PAGE Back To BROOKLYN MAIN