Friday, December 2, 2016

An Easy Way To Find FamilySearch Online Digitized Content

When I was first told that much of the online content for FamilySearch wasn't showing up by filtering by state I didn't realize you can filter your search for online content alone. I've been filtering by Family History library recently. I've been looking for films located at the Orange Family History Library, and the Los Angeles Family History Library. When doing this I noticed a filter for online content. (In the past you could search the Catalog on CD's and find out if a local Family History Center had a film you needed in their permanent collection. I miss that.)

To search for only what's available online click on search these family history centers on the FamilySearch catalog page. Click the second choice at the top of the menu, online.

Now that I know how to filter for online content I've searched using various jurisdictions. You can search the following jurisdictions for US:
  1. United States
  2. State
  3. County
  4. Township
  5. Town
  6. City
You can also search records localities for foreign Countries filtering by online records.

I've also searched for tax lists by using the filters listed above the search box. I used the keyword search for tax. This brought up over 5,000 titles online. When you filter further by state you can eliminate a few thousand. You can filter by century and decade also.

I am interested in finding a marriage bond for an ancestor who probably married in Virginia in the 1780's. I don't know which county these ancestors married in? I'm using keyword search to find all marriage bonds available for Virginia online. I would like to find marriage bonds for a John Thurman married to a Sarah. I don't have Sarah's maiden name and hope to find a marriage bond in order to discover it. It looks like their eldest child was born in 1784? Their youngest was born in 1798. I can make a guess as to when they may have married based on this timeframe. I will look at the online marriage bonds for any marriages in this timeframe.

marriage bonds online Virginia

I found filtering doesn't always bring up all titles with online films. Filtering by county seems to bring up the most complete list of online content. I found a Tax list for Washington County, Tennessee that didn't come up when I filtered for Tennessee tax 1700's. You have to search by various filters to find everything online.

This 1779 tax list didn't come up filtering by Tennessee and year

Many of the films that have been digitized have either been indexed, and are searchable at FamilySearch, or the film has an index in the front or back of the book appearing on the film. I knew my ancestor William McPike appeared in a Court Order book, for Washington County, Virginia, when he was ordered to do road work. I didn't have the page number. I found the court order book online with no index. I really wanted a copy of the original entry. I searched for my copy of the transcription, I had, in order to get the page number. I was then able to get the original copy. I found I sometimes need to find an index elsewhere if it's not available through FamilySearch.

I wanted the original copy to verify the name Holloway
also appeared in this road work order. Holloway is supposedly
Obedience, William's wife's maiden name
Everything isn't online or searchable through an index yet. Since many of the films that have been digitized have indexes, or indexes can be found elsewhere, this hasn't been a serious problem. Even though a small fraction of the holdings of the Family History Library are now online it's still enough to keep me busy for a long time.

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