We’re definitely excited to have launched our new site at GenGophers.com! If you’ve had a chance to try us out, you know that Genealogy Gophers is both free (really!) and that it produces unique search results different from those on any other genealogy site you’ve seen. It’s already gotten some remarkable press and a number of positive reviews, including some from eminent genealogy websites and bloggers like these:
Are we getting questions? Yes, lots. In the few weeks since the GenGophers website went live we’ve been asked a bunch of questions about it and we’ll try to address a few of them in this first blog. Please follow us here (or on Twitter and Facebook which are soon to come) and we’ll keep answering the questions you send to us. We don’t want the secret sauce to be secret. The more you know about GenGophers.com and how it works, the more valuable it will become to you and the more you’ll tell others about it.
Here are three of the most frequent questions we’ve gotten already:
1) What kinds of genealogy publications are in the GenGophers library? It currently contains more than 40,000 digitized and out of copyright family histories, regional and local histories, genealogy magazines and how-to books, newsletters, and medieval histories. Some are relatively well known publications, like city directories from the United States (e.g., The New York City Directory from 1850-1851). Others are more obscure writings and not sources most of us would be routinely reviewing to find our ancestors, like some 18th and 19th century regional histories (e.g., A Visitation of the Seats and Arms of the Noblemen and Gentlemen of Great Britain and Ireland, published in 1855).
2) Where did you get all these digitized family history publications? We obtained them from FamilySearch in a partnership we have with them. They obtained them in conjunction with their partner institutions, including (as listed on the FamilySearch website):
— Allen County Public Library
— Brigham Young University Harold B. Lee Library
— Brigham Young University Idaho David O. McKay Library
— Brigham Young University Hawaii Joseph F. Smith Library
— Church History Library
— Family History Library
— Houston Public Library – Clayton Library Center for Genealogical Research
— Mid-Continent Public Library – Midwest Genealogy Center
— Historical Society of Pennsylvania
— Onondaga County Public Library
3) Do you have plans to add more books to the GenGophers library? Through our partnership with FamilySearch we expect the GenGophers library to grow from the current 40,000 (plus) to more than 100,000 similar types of publications by the end of 2015. FamilySearch has an extensive publication collection and digitizing program underway with teams all over the world that will continue to add family history information for you to easily access through GenGophers.com. In addition to FamilySearch we are also planning on gathering thousands of more genealogy books from Archive.org and other free book sources on the Internet.
Great content. But what about the search tools? In addition to questions about the library and the growing amount of family history content it contains, we’ve had a lot of questions about GenGophers’ unique search technology. In our next blog we’ll spend some time sharing how the search engine works its magic and why it’s so different than any other genealogy search tools available (promise: our explanation won’t get too geeky and techie).
We hope you enjoy the GenGophers website and find it valuable as you do your genealogy work. Please continue to give us feedback on both what you like and what you’d like to see added/changed in the future. We plan on popping out brief surveys to our followers pretty regularly, sorry in advance if they’re an intrusion (feel free to ignore them). But we’re still new, want to make sure we’re adding new features that are focused on the needs you have, and we need your help identifying what they are.
— Your friends at GenGophers.com