Smoky Mountain Family Historian

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Thoughts on Indexing

I just finished indexing my 4,500th record (1900 census) for Family Search Indexing. The last batch included a lot of first generation immigrants with their children. As I saw the countries of origin of these immigrants (Ireland, Germany, England, and Scotland mostly), I couldn't help but think about their journeys across the Atlantic, and the difficulties they must have faced. I was amazed that some of the Germans married the Irish in such a short amount of time after reaching America. (The census gives the year or immigration, and one could tell that the parents came at separate times by that date. The age of the oldest child often helps estimate the marriage date.) I also noted that some of these persons had lived in Canada at one point because the oldest children were sometimes born there and also had immigration dates. I wondered if these immigrants were happy that their children (or at least the younger ones) were born as Americans? Did they have families back in the old country? How often did they hear from them? What was it like for them? Did they ever reconsider their decision to move to America?

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