Wednesday, June 9, 2010

FHL Catalog Down...But There's Another Way

Last night I read on A.C. Ivory's blog Find My Ancestor that the Family History Library's catalog would be down for a few days. Earlier in the day I had tried to access the catalog. I was trying to get myself organized for my Indiana probate record summer research. A few weeks ago I had made a spreadsheet of all my ancestors that died in Indiana, their date of death, and the microfilm numbers that contained their wills and probates. Yesterday I wanted to print off the film notes pages for each microfilm number so that I could take notes on it on my findings for each film I order this summer.

But as A.C. pointed out the catalog was down. I received a message to try again later. This morning the catalog won't even load to the search page.

But I had another idea. I remembered FamilySearch's beta website. This is the update to their pilot site. It allows you to search for records, but also allows you to search the catalog.

This catalog is still working. It worked yesterday and it worked this morning. I hope that the people working at the FHL know about this other catalog and are not leaving their guests stranded with access only through old microfiche. The beta site is different than the regular catalog and it won't let me print by film number, but if you are at the library and stranded without the normal catalog you won't mind.

I'd appreciate if this post was passed around to anyone at the FHL or the FHCs in case they don't know about this workaround.

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