FamilySearch Indexing: Passenger Lists, FAQ

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US,Massachusetts - Boston Passenger Lists 1820-1891/004704876[83]

I notice that there is not a title indexing box.  I have run into several lines with titles, one of which is a Mrs " Walker. This indicates that the given name of the previous line (Mr John Walker) is to be used for the given of the wife.  So I will have two John Walkers in the index one male and one female.  Is this the correct way of doing this? That is correct


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US,Massachusetts - Boston Passenger Lists 1829-1891
Indexer problems/Arbitration problems

A few of these records have a month and day written usually in the upper right of the image, there is no indication anywhere that this is a shipping date or an arrival date , do not index it unless it is specific , also the large number is NOT the year it is a cargo or shipment number, folks have been indexing and arbing these as a year, check the header dates the records are (example) from 1820 to 1893 so the ship could not arrive in 1790 or in 2011

US,Massachusetts - Boston Passenger Lists 1829-1891
Indexer problems/Arbitration problems


1. Indexers and arbitrators are using Ship descriptions in the ships name, ie: Bark Twin Seas…. do not insert the type of ship the correct way should be ‘Twin Seas’

2. Country to which they severally belong, Many folks leave city ,province state etc in this area, many folks subtitute the city/province/state with a Country name… If it isn’t written there ,don’t write it in

3.Country to which they severally belong, Many folks will replace a Colony name or what appears to be a province name with a Country name : ie Nova Scotia which was a British Colony and not a part of Canada it also included parts of Maine at the time, look up the histories if you’re not sure, on that note Cape Breton is not a Country, it has been part of Nova Scotia since 1763. New Brunswick was part of Nova Scotia till 1784..

4. Page Numbers - On most images a single number appears usually upper right on the image, it also appears written where the ship name should be , it isn’t the ship name, and on some records a smaller number appears as well. The larger number is usually the cargo record number, the cargo could include 20 pages (smaller number). Which number is appropriate? Who knows? Till that is clear I use both. But One indexer may use one the other indexer uses the other, someone has to be wrong. The instructions are being reviewed.

 (5 is in the Additional Helps) - 1 is covered in the field helps and 2 in the Basic Indexing Guidelines (which we invite all indexers and arbitrators to read)