Accessing New York Records Online–in One-Step
Known as One-Step, this genealogy portal gives you better, and more controlled, access to over 100 different websites and databases. And the site is one of the most user-friendly utilities I have used. Names that were impossible to find in the U.S. census records and among the immigrants who came through Ellis Island now magically appear–for me. So I know that the problem was in the site or its indexes, not in my limited computer skills.

(I always knew it was a mistake to take the advanced course before I enrolled for the basics. Yet, when I finally enrolled in the basics class, the instructor treated me like an advanced student, assuming I knew how to open a file and create a folder. Not so and still not so!) and also respond masterfully to One-Step. Indexing errors or 1 million+ entries needn’t stop you from finding your ancestor. And the map access is a time-saver. So I invite you to check out this portal site and use the utility programs these computer-tech genealogists–most of whom are volunteers–have designed to aid us.

Special research help with New York City censuses and broad coverage of East European and Jewish names is a utility that I really appreciate. Searching the concentration of names in a small area is a real challenge–especially when indexes have been poorly read.

And if you are developing a genealogy database, you might invite their in-put so your site works faster, and we can find the right ancestor.

Add to your March-April 2010 reading list:

Crume, Rick. “Stepping Up,” Family Tree Magazine (Feb 2007) 58-61. Describes and compares the different search formats for One-Step–how and when to use them. Very helpful.

Morse, Stephen. “Morse’s Code: A One-Step Portal for Online Genealogy,” Association of Professional Genealogists Quarterly (September 2006 and December 2006), two-part article. Or, read the online version at Well illustrated with computer screens and special search tips from the master himself.

Your favorite New York genealogist, Arlene Eakle

PS  I understand Spring in New York City is a special place.  And with all the rain they have had–it should be awesomely beautiful.  Many of the records accessed through Morse’s utility can be seen in their original form in the archives and libraries of the greater New York area.

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