Sunday, April 3, 2011

Interlibrary Loan

I know that many people have used interlibrary loans to obtain books from other libraries. I have too, but this is the first time I've requested microfilm via interlibrary loan. I have ordered microfilm through my local Family History Center, but never through my local library. I really didn't know what to expect, but was happy to see that it wasn't a hard thing to do ... the library staff knew what had to be done and other than an email requesting the necessary fees everything went smoothly. It didn't take but a few days to have the microfilm at my local library. I would have thought it might take more than a week. It took over three weeks to get the film I had ordered from the Family History Library!

The Tompkins County Public Library has at least four microfilm readers, two of which have the capability to copy pages to a flash drive. Nice!

Four of the films were of Knox County, Ohio newspapers from the 1970s to mid-1990s. I found the obituaries I needed from these four films. The fifth film contains the "Knox County Republican" dating from Jun 1877 to Oct 1879. This one is taking me a little while as I'm actually reading the issues front to back, looking for anything to do with my Porter families. I think I can renew this at least once, so hopefully I'll get through all the issues before the film has to go back to the Ohio Historical Society.

I made the observation that it would be so much easier to browse these newspapers if they were the actual newspapers. Then I thought it will be nice when all of them are digitized so one can just enter a name and Viola! there are your ancestors. But then I remembered how much I enjoy this part of my research. It's so much fun to visit libraries, courthouses, research centers, etc. I think the digitization of the newspapers will help us find those hard-to-find ancestors and/or the snippets of news we might have missed browsing through using a microfilm reader, but I still enjoy loading the microfilm, zipping past issue after issue until I get to the date for which I'm searching, and then finding that glorious obituary or news article I was hoping to find!

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