Help with Archives Search
- To make a search you must enter a keyword into at least one of the search boxes. The more boxes that you fill in the more specific your search becomes.
- You may search by AnyText, Title, Date, DocRefNo (document reference number), DocType and LocatedAt. The information here is followed by an example that shows how to use a combination search to locate parish registers.
- AnyText : A search using this box will locate the text anywhere it occurs in the database.
- Title : A search using this box will locate the text only within the Title (brief description) of the record.
- Date : You can search for documents for a specific year or for a date-range. If you search for documents for a specific year (e.g. 1823) your search results will also include documents with a date range including 1823 (such as early 19th cent).
- DocRefNo : Use this box only if you already have information about the document reference number of the documents.
- DocType : If you click on the word DocType you will get a list of document types, which you can select from. This can be useful if you also put a placename in the AnyText box. However, please note that improvement of the catalogue by use of this field is the early stages of development.
- LocatedAt : If you are interested in records held at a specific place you can click on the word LocatedAt, and then select the place you want from the look-up list.
- When you have completed as many boxes as you wish click on the Search button to the right of the search form. You will then be presented with your search results.
- Example : to locate parish registers for Cannock - select "church registers" from the DocType menu and put "Cannock" into AnyText. You will be presented with records for the series of registers deposited by churches in Cannock, which you can open up to find further details.
- Supplementary searches : You can make supplementary searches, based upon the hitlist of search results that you obtain from your initial search. You can choose to narrow your hitlist of search results using new search text, widen it, or exclude entries. These options appear only when you return to the Archive Search page by clicking on Archive Search again. This is particularly useful if your initial search produces a large hitlist of search results.
- Wildcard searches : If you want to find records containing words with the same stem or the same ending, use the asterisk symbol as a 'wildcard'. Example 1, a search for manor* will find records containing the words manor and manorial. Example 2, a search for *warden will find records containing the word warden, churchwarden or chapelwarden.
- Complex searches : are available in the Options section below the main set of search fields. To select one of these options click on the relevant button and enter the text you are looking for.
- Combine words in fields : phrase : click on the button marked ‘Phrase’ and enter a phrase to find records containing multiple search terms in a field in a given order (e.g. Alton Parish Council). Please note that this is the default setting.
- Combine words in fields : and: click on the button marked ‘and’, and enter more than one search term, to find records containing both terms in the same field.
- Combine words in fields : or : click on the button marked ‘or’, and enter more than one search term, to find records containing either one term or the other in the same field.
- Combine fields : and : click on the button marked ‘and’, and enter search terms in more than one field, to find records containing both one term in one field and the other term in another field. Please note that this is the default setting.
- Combine fields : or : click on the button marked ‘or’, and enter search terms in more than one field, to find records containing either one term in one field or the other term in another field.