FamilySearch Browsable Record Instructions

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Step 1:
Click the link under “View Images in this Collection” lower left of the catalog entry.
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Step 1A:
Your collection may require you to navigate through some locations and/or dates and types of records. Click the one that applies to your research. You may have to click several times to get to the images.
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Step 2:
Use the icons in the top-left side of the image viewer to navigate.
  • The arrows move you from on image to another
  • The + and the – to zoom in and out of the images.
  • Clicking on the tiles icon under the + and – will let you see a series of smaller images for the entire collection. This is a quick way to jump forward many images at a time.
  • The window on the upper left is the image number. Page numbers will be on the images.
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Step 3:
Find the correct item number by scrolling through the images looking for a title board in the film.
  • This is usually a black page with white letters on it and is larger print than the record images.
  • For a better view, click on an image to enlarge it.
  • You can return to the thumbnail view by clicking the menu item in the top left corner with several squares on it.
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Step 4:
Review the first several images individually while they are enlarged to see if there is an index or instructions for how the records are organized.
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Step 5:
Move from one image to another using the arrows on the top left corner of the page.
  • You can quickly move several images ahead by changing to the thumbnail view by clicking the icon with several small squares in it.
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Step 6:
If there is no index at the beginning, check at the end of that film.

Step 7:
If there is an index, try finding your ancestor in that index.
  • They are usually in alphabetical order by last name. Sometimes all of the names that begin with A are grouped together and not in any order.
  • Sometimes there is no order and you may have to look through the index one image at a time.
  • If you are researching in the United States, United States Index Systems explains different styles of indexes.

Step 8:
Once you find your ancestor in the index, you may have a page number and or a book number that tells you where their record is.
  • Use the page numbers on the images (not the image numbers) to find them.
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Step 9:
Pay attention to whether the images contain two pages or one page when determining where the image you need may be.
  • If the film you are looking at only includes the index, you will need to go to another film.
  • Use the information in your ancestor's index entry to determine which film in the collection you will need.
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Step 10:
If there is no index, check several images to determine how they are organized.
  • They may be in chronological order, alphabetical order or by order recorded.
  • There may be no order.

Step 11:
If the images don't seem to be in any particular order, you may need to do a page-by-page search of the images.
Step 12:
To find more specific guidelines when searching a collection, see the “How to use this collection” article link on the collection page.
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