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Showing posts from March, 2019

Error in Naming the 1912-1942 Marriage Index

Screenshot from Ancestry's "Cook County, Illinois Marriage Indexes, 1912-1942 I am updating my website to reflect changes in record availability and, let me tell you, with Chicago research, knowing what's what is NEVER easy. Ancestry offers a database titled Cook County, Illinois Marriage Indexes, 1912-1942 . I did a quick study, searching for exact years from 1912-1925, and noted the number of matches below. It's likely this index only covers 1914-1923 in a reliable way. Some of the outlying entries may be correct. I find Thomas Kelly and Geneveve Carter listed in this index and in FamilySearch 's  Illinois, Cook County Marriages, 1871-1920 with the same year (1913) and license number. But some are due to error. Max Stone and Mabel Freed come up under 1912, but the printed index page that's linked from the index entry says 1917 and it's corroborated by the FamilySearch index. The fiche was scratched, making the date hard to read.

Have a Horrible Copy of a Chicago Vital Record from Microfilm? Try Again Online!

Back in the day, before many Chicago vital records were made available in digital format on FamilySearch ,  I retrieved hundreds--maybe even thousands--of Chicago birth, marriage, and death records from microfilm. Here's one of the records I printed long ago. I was really good at tweaking the settings and, I promise you, this is absolutely the best I could do. Chicago, Cook County, Illinois, death certificate no. 17017 (21 March 1908), Charles B. Smith; FHL microfilm 1239777; Wilmette Family History Center, Wilmette, Illinois. I don't remember why, but not too long ago I decided to look for the same record on FamilySearch and this is the image that I found: Chicago, Cook County, Illinois, death certificate no. 17087 (21 March 1908), Charles B. Smith; digital image, "Chicago death certificates, 1878-1915," FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/42925 : accessed 12 March 2019) > microfilm 1239777, digital folder 4004622 > image 84

Newly Available: Chicago Death Registers, 1871-1879

I woke up thinking it would be a good day to work on updating chicagogenealogy.com . I ate a pink-frosting-covered sugar cookie that I got on sale at the grocery store yesterday, went to work on the tutorial page for finding death records, and was like, "Wow. Wow! WOW!" I don't know when it happened, and maybe this is old news, but Chicago death registers, 8 October 1871 to 29 February 1879, are now available for viewing on FamilySearch under the title Illinois, Cook County, Chicago, death registers, 1871-1879 . For years, I've been saying "they must have death registers" but I'd never seen one. I'd just seen evidence of their existence. Remember the Indexes to deaths in the city of Chicago during the years 1871 to 1933 : showing name, address and date of death ? Here’s the index entry for James A. Smith who died in 1875. The “D” refers to a death register, the “120” is the page number, and the “13” is the line number. “ I ndexes to deaths