Wisconsin Ancestors
1999-2019 by John Von Haden  All rights reserved.

Policies - Effective Jan. 1, 2019

My goal is to be able to make some retirement money doing what have love... researching genealogy full time...  I've been doing it since I was fourteen years old.

Doing it for hire means spending 50 to 60 hours every week either driving places, doing research, processing orders or indexing newspapers on my little microfilm reader on a TV tray next to the couch (not everything is online yet).

My costs are higher than you might think.  In past years, they included 14,000+ miles in my car, parking, office supplies, and taxes (FICA) are double for self-employment.

Since 2010, I went digital with one exception.  The State of Wisconsin does not allow birth, marriage and death certificates to be digitally scanned, so I print those and send them in the mail.

Except for birth, marriage and death certificates, I will put copies on my website (usually PDF).  You can access them with your order number using your web browser.  You can browse, print or save them to your computer's hard drive.

Within a day or two of receiving your order, I will put status and results information on my website that you can check anytime you would like.

To view the progress of your order, simply go to the results page on my website and enter your last name and order number.  If you don't know your order number, you can email me and I'll send a copy of your order to you.

This also allows me to:

Make portions of the order available to you as soon as I have them, instead of waiting until the entire order is complete
Inform you of how long some items might take me to complete.


Here are some things that might cause a delay:

Newspaper microfilms at the State Historical Society can be checked out like library books.  I might go there to get a digital image of an obituary for your order and find out that another patron has the needed microfilm checked out themselves.   Then I will try again the next time I go to Madison.
The State Historical Society is 150 miles round strip and sometimes I will go to a courthouse as far away as Appleton (180 miles round trip), so I have to plan my schedule (and bad weather may postpone a trip).

One difficultly that I might have is that some microfilms that I rented years ago at the Latter Day Saints research center are not currently available for rental any more.   They are still digitizing their vast collection of microfilms.   Some films are not digitized yet, but cannot be rented locally any more either.