View Full Version : Use and Abuse of the IGI

Ken Boyce
11-09-2008, 5:42 PM
I'm posting this here as there does not appear to be a specific location for the IGI which in my humble opinion should be located with the other important record souces such as FreeBDM (hint hint)

Use and Abuse of the IGI
Over the years I have not subscribed to the view that the IGI is all bad. On the contrary I’m of the opinion that it ranks among the top most useful record sources. In my opinion many family research problems caused by the use of the IGI stem from inexperience of the researcher in the use of the IGI
The reason I’m posting this is because I accidentally stumbled across an example of how incredulous ICI records can be if blindly used for genealogy purposes and in this particular case I’m not knowledgeable enough to know if this example can be defended from a LDS perspective without following all the leads although I suspect that they serve their LDS member’s purpose
Go to the LDS Site –
http://www.familysearch.org/eng/default.asp (http://www.familysearch.org/eng/default.asp)
Select search records - select advance search – select IGI
Then enter the following in the boxes
British Isles
All other boxes are left blank
You will have 18 records returned
I leave you to determine which one is the transcript of the actual record for Charles, where these records may lead to and their accuracy from both a LDS and a Genealogy perspective - It should make for some interesting comment about the use and abuse of the IGI especially from those who are familiar with the biography of the Dickens and Barrow families. For those who are not you may wish to use the following site or a biography to make comparisons
http://www.soc.nii.ac.jp/dickens/genealogy/genealogy-e.html (http://www.soc.nii.ac.jp/dickens/genealogy/genealogy-e.html)

Guy Etchells
11-09-2008, 9:11 PM
For what it's worth

2 Extracted record from parish registers.
6 Extracted record from computer printout of parish registers.
16 Extracted record from parish registers.
18 Extracted record from nonconformist registers

The rest are Patron submissions.

11-09-2008, 11:00 PM
there does not appear to be a specific location for the IGI (hint hint)

http://www.familysearch.org/eng/default.asp (http://www.familysearch.org/eng/default.asp)

There is now, the powers that be do listen and act.:)
Your thread has been moved to the brand new board.

07-10-2008, 1:32 PM
I read elsewhere on this forum that the IGI should be used for hints, not proof, and it's very good advice.

Only last week I thought that my family had royal connections, only to be told that I had chosen the wrong one of two couples in my family tree who had identical ages (the couples), were both married at around the same time, and who only lived about 25 miles apart. When information is so sparse, it's so easy to come to the wrong conclusions, and to see what you want to see.

The IGI is still an invaluable resource, nonetheless.

20-01-2009, 6:56 PM
I have found the IGI very useful in the past for finding people I've "lost". I had a "foundling" in a tree whom I didn't know where born or anything apart from likely to have been in London. I just by chance was looking for his surname on the IGI and came across Lonsdale "foundling hospital". Turned out this was our illegitimate child that I couldn't find. It enabled me to find out (truely lucky here) who his parents were and I find it extrodinary that I knew who they were and he never did!!! Anyhow, without the IGI I probably wouldn't have found him or it would have taken a long, long time.

However, I always verify the information with records elsewhere as I do with all my data where possible. :D

20-01-2009, 7:49 PM
It is certainly not all bad. And if there is a slightly unusual forename in the family line, it can be invaluable. I was able to trace my Salford Holland family back to Davenham through finding a baptism on the IGI. With a name as common as this, I would have still been looking, I'm sure. Thankfully, they had a Reuben baptised in Davenham, just a generation before our Salford ones. When I checked the Davenham PRs (which are those gorgeous Dade ones) I found that they were the right family. As the man who moved from Davenham to Salford died before the 1851 census, I would have had no place of birth to go on for the earlier men. Luckily the Dade registers in Davenham listed mum's maiden name and parentage, and the first child to be baptised in Salford had Mum's maiden name as a middle name. Dad's occupation checked out too. I was very lucky here, as the IGI is notoriously poor for Cheshire parishes - thankfully, Davenham was included at just the right time.

So, the IGI has been helpful to me, and on more than just this one occasion. I have even checked out the odd submitted entry, you know, and found it to be spot on too. One can't generalise, of course, but I would agree that it is a valuable index if treated correctly as such.

21-01-2009, 7:35 AM
Have to say as well, all the data on the fiches that are in library's etc and on the web has had to have been manually entered as not a scanned original so there is always the element of human error that could occur with any transcript and should by any sensible family historian be backed up by the original documents where possible.

We also know ourselves it is easy to get sent up the wrong line too without realising till a lot later. This hasn't happened to me but happened to a friend and therefore data submitted by individuals re their trees could be in their eyes correct and its only when someone else comes along with another angle on the info that it may become apparent that its not. :D

21-01-2009, 7:55 AM
I use the IGI a lot but only as a signpost. I generally ignore anything that is submitted by a researcher however information from transcribed parish records I do use. I always however order the films in and check the original record to make sure it is correct and occasionally there is other interesting material present.

I have had several cases of my ancestors listed on the IGI by a researcher that was simply worng, for example my great grandmotheer was born in NZ but didnt die there however there is an IGI record of her birth and death on the IGI submitted by a researcher and there are several more examples I can use.

Its a very useful tool but like a stanley knife, it can cut U if you are careless

louisa maud
08-02-2009, 3:31 PM
Is there any benefit from signing into the IGI

Louisa Maud

08-02-2009, 3:39 PM
Is there any benefit from signing into the IGI

Louisa MaudVery much so - as long as you use it as a guide. Have a read of this information sticky (http://www.british-genealogy.com/forums/showthread.php?t=35183).

It was by using the IGI that I found records of two of my great grandmother's sisters. Until that point, we had thought that she had only had one. Using the information that I found in the IGI, I was able to locate their deaths, graves and births - in that order! - only to discover that they had died as children of diphtheria.

08-02-2009, 4:01 PM
I think Louisa meant was there any
benefit from signing in as a user, registering your name instead of just using it.

I don't know, I have not tried doing that, though I have often looked at the link.

08-02-2009, 4:21 PM
I think Louisa meant was there any
benefit from signing in as a user, registering your name instead of just using it.

I don't know, I have not tried doing that, though I have often looked at the link.Ah - that I do not know. :o

08-02-2009, 4:57 PM
Is there any benefit from signing into the IGI

Louisa Maud

I think the only "benefit" would be receiving emails from them telling of updates, upgrades, submit your tree with them ect. Not a benefit I'd want.

It could also give preferential access to LDS members of the church.

Mitch in Notts
09-02-2009, 9:18 AM
I actually submitted one of my Gedcom one name studies to the IGI just to see what happened to it.
To do this I had to have a username & password. I signed in on a number of occasions to check the status of the Gedcom. It took nearly a year to appear on the IGI but increased the number of IGI entries for that name by 100%.

I have never received any sort of cimmunication from the LDS despite having that username & password for over two years.