Lancashire Parish Register Society
Parish Register Transcripts in progress
The LPRS has been transcribing parish registers for over a hundred years and in that time
has been almost the only transcribers of Lancashire Anglican registers. However,
copies of registers have now become more easily available, and tools such as computers have
made the task of publication easier, enabling other groups to take part in trasncribing and publishing
them. This has sometimes led to frustration when two groups have found that
they have unknowingly been duplicating the work and thus wasting effort.
We therefore wish to promote a scheme to record work in progress and to make this
information easily available. This will hopefully avoid such conflicts and provide a
mechanism to enable contact to be made between groups and individuals when tahn one has
an interest in
specific church registers. The LPRS has no plans to transcribe anything but Anglican
registers, but want to provide this record of work in progress for all denominations of
Lancashire church and burial registers.
Method to be employed
The GENUKI church database aims to provide a unique web
page for each Lancashire church which will include details of the location of all
known registers, transcripts and indexes. A topic on the page will be used to record
work in progress on any transcriptions or indexes which is being undertaken. The
technique which should be employed to get details of transcripts being undertaken is
- Search the church database to find the relevant
church and use the contact link at the bottom of the church page to provide the
details. This helps ensure that the entry for the correct church will be updated.
The church database is in itself 'work in progress' so some basic details may be
required before a unique page can be generated on which to enter details of the work
in progress. Basic details of most of the main churches is in place, but for a few the
exact location is required as part of the basic details.
- The details of the transcript which should be provided via the link will hopefully contain the
following items. The more information the better it will be but some information will
not be appropriate in all cases.
- Is it a transcript, index or something else?
- Which events does it cover and for what range of years?
- Who is carrying out the work? This can be an individual or a group. In order to
provide a contact link a link to an existing web page can be used and we also have
script which uses a web form for users to enter queries which then use a database
lookup to obtain the email address of the contact. This avoids having email addresses
which are open to spam on the web pages themselves, and it provides a single point to
change when email addresses change.
- On whose behalf is the work being carried out? This is typically the group who
will be publishing it, and here a link should be provided to the group's own web pages.
- What is the current status of the transcript? This is something that should be updated
as work progresses and helps fend off queries from the curious. The date against the
status also gives an indication about the speed of progress.
- Some transcribers offer to provide a lookup service and so a note about this should be
provided. There will be three options:
- No comment
- A note indicating that lookups will be performed, and any qualifications on the type of
- If researchers see that lookups are being offered by other transcribers they may ask any
you. So if you don't want lookup queries an appropriate note can be added.
- As you have an interest in the church why not consider providing some facts to add to the
church web page, such as a note about its history, and make sure there is record of the
location of all existing registers, transcripts, indexes etc.
Denton, St. Lawrence is a good example of what can
- When the transcript has been completed use the link on the church page to get the status
updated and at this point it will remain under the 'Work in progress' heading until it has
been published and made available to researchers.
- Once published again get in contact and details will be added under the 'Transcripts' or
'Indexes' heading so that future researchers will be able to obtain a copy of your work.
How will it look?
Take a look at
Gressingham as an example of
a church database page with most of the church details present and for which a
transcript is in progress.
This system has been designed to minimise the amount of work required to keep it up to date,
and also to help eliminate some of the queries that might arise from researchers,
particularly the naive. There is therefore a standard header and trailer round each entry
which is stored at a single point thus making it easy to make global additions of text if the
need arises. The header at the moment just contains the title, whilst the trailer contains the
comments which appear in italics.
The church database is itself 'work in progress' and there will be a number of completed
transcripts or indexes that are not recorded in it. If you identify any of these then again use
the contact link on the church page to provide details which should also help against
duplication of effort, and will help bring the work to the attention of researchers.
[Last updated Wednesday, 03-Sep-2008 11:35:32 BST - Phil Stringer]