U.S. Content Update: 1880 Census Images, 1935-1945 City Directories, Improved Obituaries Collection & Iowa State Census Fix
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Here's a summary of today's U.S. Content releases:

  • 1880 U.S. Federal Census
    • Over 99% of the 1,085,847 images were replaced today with higher quality images scanned from earlier generation microfilm. We're looking closer at the images left to be replaced.
    • In many cases, the improvement in quality is the difference between completely illegible to complete legibility (see example below).
    • This update is a product of our partnership with FamilySearch.
    • The free index, which largely consists of the work of GSU/FamilySearch volunteers many years ago, was not updated today.  Several known errors in the index will be fixed in coming months.
    • New vs. Old images - extreme case (old on top, new on bottom):



  • U.S. City Directories
    • Over 2,000 1935-1945 city directories were added today.
    • This is the first installment of directories from this time period to this database.  Hundreds more will be added in coming months.
  • Obituary Collection
    • Now twice as many contemporary obituaries are being added to this database on a regular basis, with significantly fewer duplicates.
    • Our technology to extract the data from these obituaries has greatly improved, parsing the information into several more fields to allow for more accurate search results and more relevant family tree hints.
All in all, today's U.S. content releases contain tens of millions of new records, many of which were never before accessible online.  Please let me know if you have any questions or if you find any issues with these releases that you'd like me to address. P.S. The Iowa State Census 1925 missing images problem was fixed and rolled live yesterday.   Thanks to those of you who brought this to our attention.