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Thread: Alternative Search Engine for London Gazette

  1. #1
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    Default Alternative Search Engine for London Gazette

    In case the duplicate post in the Data Projects and Reference Section is missed.

    At the following link you will find a series of alternative search engines for the London Gazette between 1 January 1939 and 31 December 1945.

    http://www.rafaircraftaccidents.com/...nderindex.html

    Search for Surname and Service Number
    This produces a tailored query to the Gazette that auto completes the option boxes and gives search results in similar manner to the old Advanced Search function.

    Search for Surname and Any Initial
    This uses the new index method to allow a search for any forename initial or name associated with a surname. Where the initial is located eg first/middle/last does not matter for this search.

    The final three search methods are tailored to allow the entries of Edition/Page and Date/Page in printed works on Military Awards (Maton, Carter etc) to be found directly.

    Search by Edition Number

    This produces a hyperlink to the first page of any specified Edition of the London Gazette.

    Search between dates
    This produces a list of all the Edition hyperlinks between two dates.

    Search by Year and Page

    Entering a year followed by a particular page number will produce a hyperlink to display the selected page without needing to enter the Edition Number.

    All search methods have an example included above the search boxes to demonstrate function.

    As an example of work flow try the recent enquiry

    P/O H T Turner

    Use the Search by Surname and Initial (Turner H) to find the link to the page which contains the match.

    Scroll to the bottom of the page and enter 1944 and 2284 into the year and page search box.
    This will give the link to the page where his service number can be found

    Now do a Search by Surname and Service Number (Turner 160741)
    This will display on the Gazette all the pages where he is listed (first link is a scan error), including the Gazette Edition 36542 when his DFC award was listed.

    Have a play and see if it helps in your Gazette searches.

    Regards
    Ross
    Last edited by Ross_McNeill; 29th April 2014 at 08:46.
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    Ross

    A big "Thank You"

    as a test found the Service Number of Duncan Whiteley Balden which was 33154 in two steps

    He is one of my pre-war baleouts (Hawker Osprey K5756 800 Sqn, Moray Firth, Scotland September 20, 1937) A/C.1 John Beresford Murfin Killed

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    Likewise Ross, A big thanks! Been struggling with the new page for a couple weeks and this makes it 10 times easier to find anything.

    Regards
    Dave

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    Ross,

    Thank you very much. I can now find a name with the page number again and have done so.

    I assume this is your own solution ? Amazing how it has been left to users and enthusiasts to make it workable once more. We are all in your debt.

    One feature I still cannot access - and one I used a lot - are the quarterly Indexes. I am lucky in that about two years ago I printed off parts of them for several years that really interested me. Only wish I had done more !

    Thanks again,

    Martin Gleeson.

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    Cheers Gents,

    The Edition/Page/Date was an off line search I cobbled together sometime ago for the old index. It needed a new bespoke online database of start page/last page/issue/date created to use with the new Gazette addresses (not currently provided in any Gazette produced index).

    The Surname/Service Number uses the current Gazette search page/method. I found that the order of search terms and limits for search had a massive effect on the found results. The auto script just fills in the search boxes in a way to give most advantageous results. So nothing different to what is already permitted/presented by the Gazette Search just guided use.

    The Surname/Any Initial search is the one that is not currently offered by the Gazette and in my mind is the one that reduces the returned index data to acceptable numbers. It makes use of the new index that the Gazette has created but with a SPARQL search routine of my creation. Gazette has optimised towards linking person data and errs on the side of combining results for everyone of the same initials. For forces related announcements they have missed the fact that service numbers are a more unique tag for an individual from any service.

    Martin have you an example of a page from a quarterly index or can quote the extent of a example (page/name/date etc)? I may be able to help you regain access.

    I've had an email asking for the current scope to be increased to include 1946 so that the post war New Year Honours and Birthday Honours lists can be included. It should be ready for use in the next few days and I'll post an update message here.

    If the alternative search engines are of use I'll look to expand the years covered. Make the link progression a bit more integrated rather than the current output of one search needing to be entered as input to another search.

    Post your wish lists.

    Regards
    Ross
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    Possible good news Martin but it is a bit data geek heavy!

    I think that the quarterly index you seek is the source document for the new Longitudinal Dataset RDF triples.

    I cannot source the original documents but most of the pages have been converted into XML files and uploaded to the Gazette Github pages.

    https://github.com/TheGazette

    then go to the decade you want eg 1940-49

    https://github.com/TheGazette/Dataset-Index-1940-1949

    bottom righthand side of the screen is an icon to download the decade as a zip file if you want them on your computer.

    If not click to expand the directory to the individual xml file eg

    https://github.com/TheGazette/Datase...940_1_0018.xml

    I think that these will give the linked info on person and pagenumber you are looking to recover.

    Just to complete the breadcrumb trail - this is how page 18 from 1940 index, first quarter has been extracted into the new surname dataset:

    https://www.thegazette.co.uk/London/...ew=linked-data

    As you can see quite a bit has been left for future index data drops.

    Regards
    Ross
    Last edited by Ross_McNeill; 30th April 2014 at 21:35.
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    London Gazette alternative search engine now updated to span 1 January 1939 to 31 December 1946.

    http://www.rafaircraftaccidents.com/...nderindex.html

    Regards
    Ross
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    Hi Ross,
    many thanks I tried few examples in your alternative search engine and it works nicely

    Pavel
    Czechoslovak Airmen in the RAF 1940-1945
    http://cz-raf.webnode.cz

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    Updated to include an Advanced Search to enable user specified search between years 1914 to 1946 inclusive.

    Advanced Search on Surname & Any Initial includes text on category of entry to trim results used.

    I've included this as an early adoption for the future as it will be a very powerful feature but for the moment it is usable with care, needing the proposed Gazette User edit facility to eliminate scan errors.

    Basic search still fixed to period 1939 to 1946 for ease of use.

    Regards
    Ross
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    Thanks Ross

    This is an excellent help, and works very well.

    Regards
    Steve
    41 (F) Squadron RAF at War and Peace, April 1916-March 1946
    http://brew.clients.ch/41sqnraf.htm

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