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Volunteers Serve Important Roles

Most amateur genealogists rely heavily on the internet, where scores of websites provide a mountain of information to be mined for details about ancestors. But this stuff does not happen automatically. In the vast majority of cases, human volunteers need to dig out and process the information before it can be made available.

About 25 volunteers working with the St. Clairsville Public Library have performed a wonderful service in that regard. They digitalized 60,575 obituaries that were printed in local newspapers from 1984-2018.

That information — available at digitalshoebox.org — will be invaluable to people searching for details about the lives of ancestors. It is not going too far to suggest that the obituaries will provide breakthroughs for some genealogists.

Good for the library — and especially, good for the volunteers who spent nearly 500 hours on the project. Their service is appreciated.

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