US, Maine—Delayed Returns for Births, Marriages, and Deaths, 1670–1891


Project Instructions



Read the Instructions

  • Please read these project instructions carefully before indexing any batches.
  • Review this page and the field helps frequently for updates to the instructions.
  • Click here for a summary of project updates.

Sample Images

What Is Unique About This Project

  • On some of the records, information that should be indexed continues on the back of the cards. It includes parents' names, dates, and places. Please index the information from the back of the card with the information from the front of the card, and mark the back of the card as No Extractable Data Image. Please check "What to Do When Records Span Two Images" below for more information.
  • Do not assume that the parents listed on the back of the birth, marriage and death cards are necessarily the parents of the principal unless the data on the front of the card matches that information.
  • If more than one date appears on a marriage record, index only one date according to the following priority: Marriage date, License date, Consent date, Recording date or any other date.

What to Do When Records Span Two Images

  • If the first image on a batch is of the back of a card, don't index it. The image will be indexed as part of the previous batch. Start indexing at the first image of the front of a card. 
  • If the last image in a batch is of the front of a card, index the entire record, including the next image of the back of the card in the next batch.  To see the next image:
    1. In the menu bar at the top of the screen, click View.
    2. Click Show Previous or Next Image.
    3. In the window that appears, click the Next Image button.
    4. Index the record while viewing both images at the same time. (In this case, ignore the "Do not index from this image" warning.)

State or Country

  • If you are looking at the front of a card that does not indicate the state or country, view the next image to see if the information was recorded on the back of the card.  Click here to see an example.  If it was, then return to the image of the front of the card to index the information, along with the names and dates. Then return to the image of the back of the card, and mark the image of the back of the card as a No Extractable Data Image.
  • The State or Country might be included in a stamped form. If no location was recorded, index the information on the stamp.

Number of Records per Image

  • The data entry area is set at one record per image. If you have images with more than one record, you will need to add entry lines to match the number of records on the image. To add records:
    1. In the menu bar, select Tools.
    2. Click Records per Image.
    3. Click in the Number of Records box, and type the number of records on the image.
    4. Click OK.

Highlighting and Using the Ruler

  • Because of the many forms in this project, highlights are not available. You may use the ruler instead to follow a record across an image.
  • If you choose to use the ruler, please be aware that it is not anchored to the indexing screen and does not automatically move as you move to a new entry. To see the ruler:
    1. In the menu bar, select View.
    2. Click Show Ruler.

Handwriting Help

  • Many of these records are handwritten. The handwriting resource on the data entry screen may help you decipher handwriting.
  • To access this resource, click on the Handwriting Help icon (an inkwell with an orange feather quill).

Additional Information