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Irish Family History Foundation


   The Irish Family History Foundation provides information on births/ baptisms, marriages and deaths which are critically important prior to the start of civil registration.  It’s a site I use regularly and it’s been my habit to have credits available so I can purchase transcriptions as needed.  I’ve written about it a number of times in the past, so if you’re not familiar with it, you can check out my earlier blog.  On September 25th, IFHF announced a change from a pay-per-view site to a subscription site which in my opinion has pros and cons.  At $289 per year, the pricing is such that I cannot afford an annual subscription.  They also offer shorter time periods,  $161 for six months or $32 for one month and I do like the feature that allows you to opt out of automatic renewal.   I did convert my outstanding credits to a one month subscription (non renewing) and have been trying to do as much as possible during the month.  Perhaps once or twice a year I’ll do a one month subscription.  But what if I need only one transcription?  The present plan offers no alternative…it would cost me $32 for that one transcription.  I do feel that IFHF should also offer a pay-per-view option.  

   My bigger concern is what they have done to their search engine.  In the past I could search on a surname, limited, for example to a county and find all of the people by that name…important when doing a one name study (or when you have an usual name such as Moughty <g>).   Now, if you don’t fill in the given name of an individual or their parents, you receive this message

Please enter at least one first name or any combination of the child's/parents' first names to search.

Even if I attempt to search for the individual with the given name, I’m told I need a year or the first name, surname or year to complete the search.  None of this happened in the old search engine and to get around it, I have to do multiple searches in 10 year increments to get the information.   I want the old search engine back!  In most cases, I don’t know the parents’ names…that’s what I’m looking for!

   The current issue of CLANN (their newsletter) gives a tutorial on searching the website, but assumes you know the details of the person you are searching…unfortunately not a very good assumption.  

   I have written to IFHF and the response simply said they would pass on my feedback.  If you feel as I do and want the old search engine back, I encourage you to write to them and let them know.   Perhaps they’ll get the message!

   Happy Hunting!

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© Donna M. Moughty 2007- 2018