I just received a newsletter from the LDS that highlights items of note as they relate to the massive LDS indexing project that is ongoing to convert their 2.5 million reels of microfilm to digitized images and indexes.
The newsletter had some incredibly interesting statistics relating to the ongoing indexing effort.
Here are some statistics of note:
- Total number of records indexed to date is 418,595,500. (That is correct, 418 million records!)
- Total number of records indexed just in 2010 is 165,952,000 (That is correct, 165 million records!)
- Total number of registered indexers that are responsible for creating the above totals is 400,589 (That is correct, over 400 thousand indexers!)
There is now a heavy emphasis being placed on working on the Census Records for 1930 for the United States. Records for the 1910 and 1920 U.S. Census have been completed.
The LDS also indicated the following needs they have in order to keep progress moving at a steady clip. Some of these needs for help are:
- LDS always needs arbitrators who become the decision makers after data has been indexed by two individuals. It is the arbitrator that resolves any discrepancies between the two indexers on the data that was indexed. This obviously requires indexers to take the time to look at the data in hand closely and to make the best decision they can when they enter in what they saw in the record. Handwriting can be a challenge. Bad handwriting can lead to two indexers interpreting what they saw differently thus contributing to a larger challenge for arbitrators.
- The LDS is in need of those with Non-English language skills. There are currently 9 projects needing non-English language skills, with Polish and Hungarian language skills that will be needed as these projects roll out.
- The LDS is in need of those possessing Latin language skills to especially work on documents from the United Kingdom that are mainly in Latin.
I was amazed when I saw these statistics on what has been accomplished to date. I am also amazed at seeing that there are currently 400,000 + indexers worldwide that are volunteering their efforts to convert LDS image data to indexed resources that appear for free on the LDS website at www.familysearch.org under the Pilot Project category.
I have noticed that as I visit this area of the web site that there are more and more records available from throughout the world and not just the USA.
I have been indexing records for about 4 months. I find it very enjoyable and I feel my efforts are making a wonderful contribution.
I would like to encourage everyone that has even thought about doing this to go ahead and sign up and start indexing! You do not have to commit to any amount of time or records to complete. You can do as much as you would like or as little as you feel you can comfortably contribute. You will love doing this and you will see your results of indexing made available for yourself and other researchers at the LDS website.
Come on into the ranks of the 400,000 indexers that exist today. You won’t be sorry! Give it a try!
Schaumburg Township District Library