Bay County, Florida, Genealogical Society

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Projects of the Bay County Genealogical Society

About Our Projects
By charter, the Bay County Genealogical Society is dedicated to the preservation and distribution of genealogical and historical records related to Bay County, Florida, and surrounding areas.

Current Projects
BCGS has several major transcription projects under way at present:

Obits before 1985 and after 2015 Transcribe obits from various months of the Panama City News Herald from before 1985 and after 2015 to increase the number of obituaries.

Obits for 1984 Transcribe the January-December portion of obits from the Panama City New Herald of 1984.

Births, Deaths, and Marriages from the Panama City Pilot 1925-1932 and 1940-1941 The Bay County Library has recently arranged for this valuable resource to be scanned and placed online. An index can be generated, but, but like all indexes derived from OCRed documents, it misses many important events and people. We would like to create a more complete index.

Projects Being Considered
Cemetery Index Transcribe cemetery and/or funeral home records from about 1995 forward and integrate into our existing database to bring our index up to the present.

Obituary Index Transcribe death notices and obituaries reported in the Panama City News Herald from the first edition in 1935 to 1984 and integrate with our existing index to bring our index forward to the present.

Recently Completed Projects
Cemetery Index
The Bay County Genealogical Society transcribed every tombstone in Bay County between about 1990 and 1995. The data were recorded in 38 separate files—one for each cemetery. Our Society merged all these files were into a single, alphabetized file and up-loaded to our Web site in November 2005. Containing about 21,502 inscriptions, ours is believed to be the first county society in Florida to do that. In 2008, Gunlock Cemetery was updated by Suzanne Shay

Obituary Index Many hours of effort over a number of years by Bay County Library staff members in the Local History and Technical Services Department, some of whom were BCGS members, produced an index to all the death notices and obituaries reported in the Panama City News Herald between 1 July 1987 and 20 April 2006, plus a few additional scattered dates from earlier years. These data were integrated into an alphabetized list of approximately 25,655 names, and uploaded to the BCGS Web site in May 2007. It was subsequently discovered that about 16% of obituaries were missing from this group, and it has since been corrected. More recently, all the obituaries from the 1985-1986 issues, plus the 2007-2014 issues have been added. The total number of indexed names is now about 42,000.

Marriage Index Several BCGS volunteers transcribed every marriage in the official Bay County Marriage Records for the period 1913–1955. Many of these data were printed previously in several volumes, each containing five years of records. In April 2007 these 9,500 records were merged into a single list, sorted alphabetically, and uploaded to our Web site. Additional transcriptions brought the total to 24,972 by March 2012.

Early BMD Indexes BCGS volunteers Cindy D'Aurora and Master Joseph D'Aurora meticulously transcribed every birth, marriage, and death recorded in the Panama City Pilot from 1907-1916. These indexes were added in November 2009. More recently, the 1917, 1918, 1921, 1922, and 1933 issues have been indexed in 2013 and 2014.

Brake Funeral Home Index The Brake Funeral Home Index, compiled by Nancy Roberts, covered all funerals performed by Arthur H. Brake from 1905 through 1937. It was uploaded in November 2009.
St. Andrews Voters Index The St. Andrews Voters Index, compiled earlier by Linda Kleback, listed all voters in St. Andrews from 1908 through 1926. It was compiled in 1988 by Linda, and converted to a online file in 2008.

Bay County Voters Indexs Two prominant indexes to the first Bay County voters were published in the Panama City Pilot in 1914. they were transcribed and reprinted online by William J. Zehner in November 2010.

St. Andrews and Panama City Assessment Rolls Three prominant assessment rolls were extracted and published by members of the BCGS. The list for 1912 was completed in the spring of 2009, and the 1911 St. Andrews Assessment list was completed in the Fall of 2011. Shortly thereafter, the 1911 Panama City list was completed and uploaded.

History Books A complete, integrated names and places index to about 18 of of Bay County's published history books were extracted and indexed and have been added to the Society's Web pages as an ongoing effort. This effort started about 2008 and is ongoing.

Early St. Andrews Messenger A complete, every-name index to the 1889-1891 St. Andrews Messenger was completed in September of 2008 by BCGS Vice-president Judy Bennett.