Monday, January 3

Chronicles of a NFSI*

I completed my first batch as an indexer, and (of course) I had to pick an advanced one:

1861 census for Tuscarora tp, Brant co., Ontario (then Canada West), Canada, p.1.

I'm comfortable with the layout of census images, and I'm usually pretty good at deciphering the enumerator's scribbles, but this was a bad one (and was well worth the label of "advanced").  The handwriting (the enumerator was Benjamin Carpenter) wasn't too bad, but the condition was terrible.  There were some dark spots but in most areas the colour had faded to almost unreadable.

Surnames included Carpenter, Miller, Fish, Bomssary?, Aaron, Maracle, Staats?, Johnson, Smith, Burning?, Green?, Lottridge, Coffee?, Givins?, Davis, and German.  Question marks indicated the ones I had trouble reading.

I think it was fate that I happened to get this particular batch.  Not only is my maternal family from that area (Brant and the bordering Haldimand co.), but Carpenter is one of my family names!  I don't know if - or where - Benjamin and his family fits in, but it was a thrill spotting a familiar name in a familiar place, from a batch picked at random!

Now I just hope I submitted everything alright.  The first few pages I opened looked like the tail end of a previous census district (no names, just lots of numbers and tallies), plus an inserted sheet with Brant co. township names.  I marked them all as unindexable, since they included no names....

* Newbie Family Search Indexer

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