When someone does not come up in an index, here are some things to think about:
- have you considered all alternate spellings?
- have you double checked what you put in the search boxes (right names in right boxes, no boxes with information from “old searches,” etc.)?
- could the person be in the record under a different last name (step-father, new husband, etc.)?
- have you used wildcards to expand your searches?
- do you know the index is complete or is it in “process?”
- are you certain the person really should be in the record?
- do you know how the original records were organized and preserved?
- have you performed a manual search of the records?
- have you asked someone else for a suggestion?