Wednesday, March 21, 2012

1940 Census: Not Here Yet, But You Can Practice (and Maybe Win!)

I've mentioned Family Search Indexing before, and just how cool it is to connect with history by helping to preserve the records which give us a glimpse of the lives of individuals. 


Maybe you've considered getting involved, but are still a little unsure.  I was, at first.  I worried that I would somehow mess something up.  I worried that I wouldn't be able to decipher the handwriting.  I worried that I would transpose numbers.  I worried that I would single-handedly start the zombie apocalypse.  (OK, I made that part up.  Just wanted to make sure I had the attention of the male young adult crowd.)


Anyway, my worries were in vain.  Not to say I haven't messed up,  been unsure of the handwriting, or transposed numbers.  But I did not single-handedly start a zombie apocalypse, nor did my mistakes have dire consequences.  You see, when you index a batch of records, you are not the only one to index that particular batch.  If the transcription you type differs from the transcription another person does, that batch goes to an arbitrator.  The arbitrators then sort everything out.  Also, if you have a particular batch that you really can't figure out, or you don't have time to do, or you just change your mind, you can return that batch for someone else to complete.  Easy peasy. 




As many mothers have said, “Many hands make light work.”  The more people who volunteer to index, the sooner the project will be complete.  And, to help encourage those of you who might still be hesitant to sign up, the 1940 Census Project is holding a contest.  Click here to read about the contest, and here to sign up to index.  All you need to do after you sign up is to download the indexing program and transcribe a practice batch.  So, even if you still are worried about transcribing, you see what it will be like when the census is actually released.  And who knows, you might win a Visa gift card!






[And, to meet legal disclosure requirements, you must know that as part of the1940census.com ambassador program this blog post enters me into a drawing for an Amazon Kindle Fire.]






Thankful thought:  Thanks for technology, which helps so much in family history research!





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