Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Dear Randy: Where did Texas Death images go?

Reader Jean asked in email recently:

"Do you know why the Texas Death Records 1890-1976 no longer have the images available?  The index shows images are available, but when you try to get to the image it states image not available online.  They were at one time.  I have tried contacting FamilySearch but haven't had any luck and I could not find an explanation on the webpage."

Dear Jean,

Everything you wrote is true - the "image" icon for the "Texas Deaths, 1890-1976" record collection on FamilySearch is on the collection list, the description of the database says that there are "Name index and images of Texas statewide death certificates, 1890-1976." 

Here is an image of one of the index entries in the collection:


The image box says "Image is not available online." 

I checked several other Texas databases, and the "Texas Birth Certificates, 1903-1934" collection does not have record images either, although the "image" icon is present and the collection description says that there are record images.

Is this a glitch, or a change to these databases?  If images cannot be displayed, is there another website where the images are available?

UPDATE 1 p.m.:  The problem that I had was because we were not signed into the FamilySearch website.  I tried, signed in, but never got signed in.  I was able to see the image after I signed in.  Jean may have had the same problem. 

The index page with the link to the image should say something like "Sign in to see this image."

Thank you to readers, and tweeters, who pointed this out!

UPDATE 2:30 p.m.  While the image appeared while I was signed in to FamilySearch at the library, it doesn't appear to me when signed in, using Windows 7 and IE 8, at home.  The index page for the person shown above still looks like the screen above - no image available.  What's the problem here?  Is it my operating system and browser, or is the server with the images messed up, or something else?

3 comments:

Amy Johnson Crow said...

The images are still there. You do need to be signed in to view them. I just viewed some with no problems. The Ohio death certificates had problems a few months ago with intermittent images being "not available." Sometimes just navigating away from the image and going back to it help. I'm not sure, but I think it was a server problem.

Finn said...

Another thing that you should be aware of regarding images in FamilySearch Historical Records, that the LDS Church does not own all the records on the site. There are various levels of agreements with the record owners. I Think there are five different levels, they range from free access to all indexes and images for everyone whether signed-in or not to restricted access to everything except the indexes. There are levels in between that will give credit and access to those who volunteer to do some indexing. Some access may be restricted to just the FHL. So you can see that there can be a lot of factors in the level of access.

Anonymous said...

One other thing - the images are all still there. You may need to write down the digital film number and the certificate number and go searching. Sometimes the front page says the image is #1000 but actually may be #1528 or something else.