Illegible soundex cards - not. #general


Lois Sernoff JGLois@... writes:
I am intrigued because for a long time I have believed that the
microfilmed soundex, index, and manifest pages were at pretty
much the same level of legibility, whether viewed at NARA , FHC,
or via rental film. Although I have ultimately found the pages
I was searching (after 1900) I have viewed many an unreadable
soundex or index card and manifest page in passing.<<

Steve Snyder cat2steve@... replied:
I'm really intrigued too. I was at the National Archives in DC
searching the 1897-1902 NYC passenger arrival indexes and these
films are so light that parts are almost impossible to read. The
Mormon FHC versions were no better. Even using various colored
papers to try to view the image, I just could not make out most of
the info that I needed. I could barely make out the person's name.
I was told by the staff at the DC National Archives that these
cards were destroyed after filming. <<

Is this true, or not? I have never had the time to act on this
information. A number of years ago I was told at the National
Archives in DC that if you are looking at a poor roll of film of a
ship manifest and/or census, ask the staff to get you another roll.
As to the index/soundex cards for NY ship manifests, I've looked at
them in DC and NY, and yes, mostly, they are impossible to read.
I always try to get ship info >from the immigrants' naturalization papers.
Let's keep this thread going -- perhaps others have other ideas!
Selma Neubauer
Philadelphia, PA