14 November 2016
Whereas on Friday we posted about restrictions to death records, particularly the Death Master File (DMF), today, we talk about NEW and FREE access to records.
Reclaim the Records (here’s a link to its FB page) shares …
THE NYC MARRIAGE INDEX, 1950-1995, http://www.nycmarriageindex.com/
This brand new website is the result of our successful Freedom of Information request and lawsuit against the New York City Clerk's Office. You can search all the data, for free! Our search engine even recognizes soundalike surnames, spelling variants, wildcards (with no minimum number of letters needed), common nicknames, year ranges, borough preferences, and more. Or you can download all the raw data files in XLS, CSV, or SQL format, and do whatever you want with them
-- also free!
For more information about this database, and to learn how we finally were able to force New York City to give up this data to the public, check out our latest e-mail newsletter.
If you have ancestors who lived in New York City, you have already benefitted directly from the efforts of Brooke Schreier Ganz and her cohorts. In the future, you might also benefit directly if you live in New York State, New Jersey or Missouri. See the image above for the current outstanding records requests.
Even if you do not live in those locations, we do all benefit from the efforts of Reclaim the Records. It shows that genealogists, historians, and other researchers can file Freedom of Information requests (or similar) and use Open Data initiatives, the impetus of Sunshine Week events, and more, to gain access to records that we currently do not have access to.
Catch this video (August 2016) from the recent IAJGS conference where Brooke herself talks about what she’s been doing.
What family history records would you like to gain access to?
What efforts are you and/or local organizations and/or entities you are aware of engaged in to create records access?
Editor’s Note: Read past posts on Upfront with NGS regarding Reclaim the Records here.
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