What is the explanation for this 98% useless index record?
These are the details for index record https://www.familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:F7XF-TP2 which was offered to me as a hint for my G-GPs.
The copied Citation reads:
"England, Cheshire Parish Registers, 1538-2000," database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:F7XF-TP2 : 12 February 2018), John Griffiths, , Other; citing Page: 44 Record number: 345, , Record Office, Chester; FHL microfilm 1,655,858.
This is the central part of the index record:
So - where exactly did this "other" event take place? What is an "other" event?
There is a minor clue in that it comes from film 1655858 but this covers Ditton (Lancs), Warrington (Lancs), and Dukinfield (Cheshire). Fortunately, I have my own subs to FindmyPast and was able to look for this record in FMP. It didn't take more than a couple of minutes to learn that this:
- was a Baptism event (not an "Other") and
- the place was Warrington St. Peter (18 Marford St being the parents' abode)
And where did the FMP index come from - the one with the crucial "baptism" and "Warrington St. Peter" on? Well, it says at the foot of the FMP index:
Transcriptions © Family Search
So - where has the index information been lost?
- In the indexing process itself? I guess not - it seldom is;
- In the metadata for this batch(?);
- In the mapping of the indexed data and metadata to the index record?
- In an auto-standardisation process? That's what we usually blame but it seems unlikely that is involved here - it wouldn't normally lose the event type - could it?
- Somewhere else?
More speculatively: I believe (but do not know for certain) that FS did once have the correct index - it indexed the Cheshire records for Chester Record Office for them to pass on to FMP. FMP have the correct data so presumably either they've corrected it all or FS have reindexed the film and messed up.
The point is that anyone with access only to FS data will not have been able to understand what this data represents (it says "Image Unavailable"). Because it came up as a hint, there could have been a major temptation to accept this (all 3 names on the index matched my family - that's presumably why it was hinted). The data that would let me say "Surely GGPs weren't in Warrington?" just isn't there...