The following announcement was written by The Generations Network, parent company of Ancestry.ca:
Previously, the GRO Birth Index was indexed by surname range only. A search would produce a list of all pages on which the searched name might appear, but referenced by the first and last name on those pages only. Now, every name in the GRO Birth Index is individually searchable.
Ancestry is currently working to fully index the GRO Marriage and Death indexes also. When complete, more than 250 million individual UK birth, marriage and death (BMD) records will be searchable on Ancestry.ca.
As ‘core’ record sets, this major enhancement to Ancestry’s BMD collection will be of great significance to all family history researchers with UK ancestry.
The GRO Birth Index will comprise two separate collections. The first will be the 1837 to 1915 Birth Index, which has been keyed by FreeBMD, a group of independent volunteers dedicated to transcribing civil registration indexes of birth, marriage and death records for England and Wales.
The second, the 1916 to 2005 Birth Index, includes the birth index from 1916 to 1983, which has been transcribed by Ancestry, and the GRO published index from 1983 to 2005.
Ancestry.ca Marketing Director, Karen Peterson comments: “This is an important first for UK vital records and for those new to or experienced in researching their UK roots; indexing such important records will make their research easier and more immediately rewarding.
“FreeBMD has done a terrific job indexing the early birth records. Their contribution will undoubtedly inspire more people to become involved in family history by starting to research their own and also to help in preserving and providing better access to important records.”