One of the most useful resources for genealogists in Australia is the Ryerson Index. By directing me to pertinent BDM notices in Australian papers it has helped me find death and funeral details for quite a number of relatives.
"Indexing is being continuously carried out by a team of volunteers, too numerous to mention individually, who give freely of their time to ensure the site continues to grow. Site updates occur every couple of weeks, and more often in periods of high activity."
One of those amazing volunteers is Bill, the Back Indexing Coordinator. Bill regularly posts to a number of Rootsweb lists to which I subscribe. Just this week he posted this message on the NSW-ORANGEBATHURST List. I sought permission to post it on my blog in the hope that perhaps I could bring, to those who are not aware of the wonderful work of this small group of volunteers, news of its success.
Thanks to John Graham and Pauline Kettle of The Ryerson Index for giving me permission to post the message below. If you are able to assist the Ryerson volunteers please contact them through their website.
"Good evening list,
I have just received the annual report for the Ryerson Index, now 12 years old and thought I would share with you some of the contents as so many listers are Ryerson Index devotees.
We currently have about 130 indexers working indexing current and back indexing of close to 180 newspapers throughout Australia.
In 2009 the average daily additions to the index was 1123, and this year our average was 1301.
It is expected some time this year we will have a complete run of Sydney Morning Herald entries from 1955 to present. We are currently filling gaps in that paper, with some entries going back much further than 1955.
Another expectation is that the index in 2011 will in the latter part of the year reach three million entries.
As always anyone who would like to assist only has to contact us. The Back Indexing team have worked hard and we are running out of information to index, so we are particularly keen to hear from anyone who can supply information to index, from any paper at all."