1 billion2 Companies, 5 Years and 1 Billion Genealogy Records. The big news that hit the genie world this week is the announcement that Ancestry.com and FamilySearch have come to an agreement to digitise over 1 billion records from FamilySearch’s Granite Mountain vaults, and genealogists worldwide are going to be the winners.

For the past seven years volunteers around the world have been indexing and digitizing the LDS Church’s vast collection of genealogical records, and on April 19, 2013 they reached the phenomenal “1 billion” searchable records mark, that have been added to the FamilySearch.org website.

While new records are being digitised and are going online straight away, FamilySearch has a collection of over 2.4 million rolls of microfilm containing photographic images of historical documents from 110 countries. It is literally going to take Y-E-A-R-S to get these all online and digitised, let alone indexed as well, so this new agreement with Ancestry.com will speedup the whole process.

I’m not going to reproduce the full Press Release as you can read that here, but an extract from it reads …

Ancestry.com and FamilySearch International, the two largest providers of family history resources, announced today an agreement that is expected to make approximately 1 billion global historical records available online and more easily accessible to the public for the first time. With this long-term strategic agreement, the two services will work together with the archive community over the next five years to digitize, index and publish these records from the FamilySearch vault.

And Salt Lake City’s “Deseret News” newspaper has some more details about the deal, which you can read online here.

So in 5 years time, we can all look forward to another 1 billion records being online to search (that’s one B-I-L-L-I-O-N). It’s huge. That’s the number at the top with a whole lot of zeros. And that’s not even counting everything else that is likely to go online within the next five years from the big companies and small ones too. So there’s lots to look forward too!

The one question I have that doesn’t seem to be answered in the press release, or other articles about the deal, is which website are they going to be on – FamilySearch or Ancestry.com? Either way, access to 1 billion records from the comfort of your own home is a great deal. And time will tell where we can access them.

logo - Ancestrycom logo - new FamilySearch