More than 82,000 FamilySearch Volunteers “Fuel the Find” during Worldwide Indexing Event

Contributed By FamilySearch.org

  • 18 August 2015

A total of 82,039 volunteers helped to “Fuel the Find” during FamilySearch’s Worldwide Indexing Event, held August 7-14, 2015.

Article Highlights

  • The event producced an 89 percent increase in non-English language indexing activity.
  • Volunteers produced more than 12.2 million indexed (transcribed) records.
  • Volunteers from all over the world processed more than 2,183,212 non-English records.

“We are thrilled with the number of people who are fluent in a non-English language who accepted the challenge to index records in that language.” —Courtney Connolly, FamilySearch digital marketing manager

A total of 82,039 volunteers helped to “Fuel the Find” during FamilySearch’s Worldwide Indexing Event, held August 7-14, 2015.

Though short of the goal of 100,000 participants, the effort produced a number of remarkable achievements, among them an 89 percent increase in non-English language indexing activity. Volunteers produced more than 12.2 million indexed (transcribed) and 2.3 million arbitrated (reviewed) records during the week-long event (see infographic below). As with all records indexed by FamilySearch indexing volunteers, those indexed during the global event will be made freely searchable at FamilySearch.org.

For the Worldwide Indexing Event, FamilySearch sought volunteers who could decipher records recorded in a variety of languages, with a focus on French, Italian, Portuguese, and Spanish. Volunteers from all over the world exceeded expectations by processing over 2,183,212 non-English records including 1,380,684 in Spanish, 147,568 in Portuguese, 226,734 in French, and 116,835 in Italian.

“We are thrilled with the number of people who are fluent in a non-English language who accepted the challenge to index records in that language,” said Courtney Connolly, FamilySearch digital marketing manager. “If volunteers will keep up this rate of non-English indexing and arbitration, we’ll soon see people everywhere experiencing the same success in finding their ancestors that English-language researchers enjoy.”

The #FueltheFind name is derived from the way indexing helps people find family information in collections of searchable historical records online. Indexed records are like the fuel that gives genealogical search engines like FamilySearch.org the power to connect people to their missing ancestors. Committed FamilySearch volunteers online know that every name they index adds another drop of precious fuel that can help someone else discover the missing members of their family tree and learn their stories.

This year’s week-long event had an international focus. Most online indexing volunteers are native English speakers and lean toward indexing English language record collections. Currently FamilySearch.org offers twenty times more searchable records in English than in all other languages combined. “There is a huge and growing need for English speakers who are fluent in a second language, and native speakers of non-English languages to learn how to index. Tens of thousands of new volunteers are needed to keep up with the opportunity to index the world’s records,” said Connolly.

FamilySearch heartily thanks all of the volunteers for their contributions and dedication and encourages anyone interested in participating to join the ongoing indexing initiative at FamilySearch.org/Indexing.

Volunteers produced more than 12.2 million indexed (transcribed) and 2.3 million arbitrated (reviewed) records during the week-long event.