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In a twist on its records-digitizing and indexing programs, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ FamilySearch <www.familysearch.org> is turning to commercial entities for help.
For the Genesis Project, FamilySearch — the church’s records-scanning arm — digitizes documents for commercial service providers (think Ancestry.com <Ancestry.com > and Footnote <footnote.com>) and record repositories. That takes care of the most expensive aspect of putting records online, says FamilySearch spokesperson Paul Nauta. Then the business or repository indexes the records.
Within the next two years, you’ll start to see the resulting indexes free on FamilySearch and on the service provider’s or record repository’s Web site. Those entities may charge for access to record images; die images would be free at the LDS church’s Family History Centers.
The targeted record groups amount to 150 million images and include US and British censuses, US county naturalizations, Spanish parish registers, German SS records from the National Archives <archives.gov> and Lviv, Ukraine, church records.