What is the IGI?

IGI stands for the International Genealogical Index.

What did it consist of?

It was a database showing genealogy records from various sources and usually covered birth, marriages & some deaths plus baptisms or christenings.

Who produced it?

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints produced it.

Why was it produced?

It was created to assist the members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in identifying their ancestors and other relatives. (This information has been sourced from  www.ancestryinsider.org) Please note this blog site ended in May 2017 but can still be accessed. BEWARE: It is not a secure site. If you do decide to go to this site… search for IGI. It has some fascinating details about it.

Who used it?

It was usually used by family historians. Remember the index is more of a finding tool. Note some portions of the records are missing. I would recommend checking for the original source materials. Yes, I used it (see below.)

Why was it useful?

Records were indexed back in the day. The records were sorted by births, marriages and deaths, by country, county, state, parish etc. This has assisted family historians to source their records within their tree.

How was it used?

It was first produced on microfiche then CD and eventually as a collection within Family Search. Most records were only able to be accessed by batch numbers and country – not parish or surname.

IGI Example – William ALLEN records.

I shall be writing about my William ALLEN in a later blog. He was born in 1816.

The above IGI shows records in Burrough Green, Cambridgeshire, England where my ALLEN family once lived. Each record is underlined in RED.

All records related to William ALLEN and surname variants. It would appear that the records are in sections of six divided by the black line. The records show the father, mother or spouse. Then the type column shows marriages (M) and christenings (C). Next, the event date and the location of this event (town, parish). I have not been able to determine what the next three column notations mean – B, E and S. If anyone knows what these are, please let me know. The next column is the batch number and then the serial sheet number.

I would think that I obtained a copy of this IGI in 1983. I do have a lot of pages of the IGI which seems to be in fairly good condition for its age!

What happens now?

As you probably have guessed, along came computers and records became digital. The IGI was retired in 2012 after being around for nearly 40 years. Like most records, one does need to be aware of transcription errors as well as missing records. I suggest using the IGI as a hint and doing follow-up research to ensure you have found the correct record.

Check out www.familysearch.org for more information.

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