Request for a re-scan of a specific page of the New York State birth index from 1901

Reclaim The Records filed this request with the New York State Department of Health of New York.
Due Sept. 13, 2018
Est. Completion None
Status
Awaiting Response

Communications

From: Reclaim The Records

To Whom It May Concern:

Pursuant to the New York Freedom of Information Law, I hereby request the following records:

I am writing on behalf of the group Reclaim The Records, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. You might remember us from the two separate Article 78 lawsuits we currently have pending against your agency.

Our organization made a previous FOIL request to the New York State Department of Health (NYS DOH) in September 2017, which was assigned the FOIL tracking number 17-09-412 by your office. In that request, we asked for digital scans of the old microfiche sheets of the New York State birth index, covering the years 1880 to 1942. We recently received those birth index files on a small portable hard drive. Thank you for finally sending them, even if it did take your office almost a year to do so.

As we slowly work our way through the over 80,000 image files we have received (704.44 GB in total), we have unfortunately just discovered that one of the images on our portable drive is corrupt and cannot be opened or viewed, and so we would like you to please re-scan this microfiche sheet and re-send it to us, as this means that our original FOIL request, # 17-09-412, is still not entirely fulfilled.

We are requesting under FOIL that NYS DOH provide a freshly scanned version of digital image # 102 of the New York State birth index for the year 1901. On our portable hard drive, provided by your office, this file is labeled as /Volumes/48877-DD04276/48877/48877_556541/48877_556541-00101.tif . In other words, it is the 102nd sequential file in the "48877_556541" directory, the one that is labeled "48877_556541-00101.tif" and whose birth index microfiche sheet should have the printed number "100" visible in the top right corner, for the year 1901. The size of this one file on our portable hard drive is only 2.2 MB, while almost all the other images in the same folder are about 6 MB in size, so there seems to have been a hiccup in the original digital scanning process.

We would be willing to accept a high-quality digital photograph instead of a scan, if that would be easier and quicker for your agency to provide.

The requested document will be made available to the general public, and this request is not being made for commercial purposes. As you know, our group posts all our genealogical materials online for free public use, unencumbered by logins, paywalls, fees, or usage agreements -- which is, as you know, quite unlike the commercial genealogy website Ancestry.com, with whom your office may have made a recent deal or two, which is the subject of one of our two pending FOIL suits against your agency.

In the event that there are fees, please inform us of the total charges in advance of fulfilling this request. If you could provide this missing file to us via e-mail or through a file-sharing website like Dropbox, that would be ideal, but if not then we are willing to pay for a small USB thumb drive and the cost of shipping to California through a trackable carrier such as FedEx or UPS.

Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. We look forward to receiving your response to this request within 5 business days, as the statute requires.

We're totally cool with filing a third lawsuit against your agency, if needed, but we are hopeful that we won't have to do so.

Sincerely,

Brooke Schreier Ganz
Founder and President of Reclaim The Records

From: Reclaim The Records

To Whom It May Concern:

This is a follow-up to an e-mail that our non-profit organization Reclaim The Records sent to your office yesterday, concerning a missing image file in the 1901 New York State birth index records, which were originally provided to us through our September 2017 FOIL request 17-09-412.

We have identified two more image files in this same folder on the hard drive that are also corrupted and unable to be opened, which means that these microfiche sheets will also need to be re-scanned. They are microfiche page # 251 (digital image #256) and microfiche page #590 (digital image #601), both also from the year 1901. Please provide new digital scans (or digital photographs) of these microfiche sheets as well, to complete the set of images for 1901 births.

Thank you for your timely response.

Sincerely,

Brooke Schreier Ganz
Founder and President of Reclaim The Records

From: Reclaim The Records

To Whom It May Concern:

This is another follow-up concerning missing image files from the New York State birth index records, which you originally provided to our organization through our September 2017 FOIL request # 17-09-412.

The following seven image files are missing from the year 1903 -- which is located in the folder /Volumes/48877-DD04276/48877/48877_556543/ on the hard drive you provided:

- 48877_556543-00054.tif (microfiche page #54)
- 48877_556543-00101.tif (microfiche page #100)
- 48877_556543-00156.tif (microfiche page #154)
- 48877_556543-00426.tif (microfiche page #420)
- 48877_556543-00511.tif (microfiche page #503)
- 48877_556543-00563.tif (microfiche page #554)
- 48877_556543-00731.tif (microfiche page #720)

Please re-scan these images and send them.

We will update this e-mail thread with more data if we see more missing information from other years.

Sincerely,

Brooke Schreier Ganz
Founder and President of Reclaim The Records

From: Reclaim The Records

To Whom It May Concern:

This is another follow-up concerning missing image files from the New York State birth index records, which you originally provided to our organization through our September 2017 FOIL request # 17-09-412.

The first sixty-six microfiche sheets of the 1905 birth index, covering surnames starting with A through Bib, were not included in the folder for 1905, which is named folder 48877 on the portable hard drive. Instead, the images in that folder start with a chunk of names from the end of the alphabet, surnames W through Z.

Please re-scan or digitally photograph these first sixty-six microfiche sheets for us, and send them to us. Thank you.

Sincerely,

Brooke Schreier Ganz
Founder and President of Reclaim The Records

From: New York State Department of Health

Dear Ms. Ganz -

We are looking into this and will respond to you shortly.

Records Access Office
New York State Department of Health
Corning Tower, Rm 2364
Albany, NY 12237
P: (518) 474-8734
F: (518) 486-9144
Email: foil@health.ny.gov<mailto:foil@health.ny.gov>

From: Reclaim The Records

To Whom It May Concern:

This is another follow-up concerning missing image files from the New York State birth index records, which you originally provided to our organization through our September 2017 FOIL request # 17-09-412.

Microfiche sheet #10 (digital image #11) for the year 1939 is also corrupted and the image file cannot be opened. Please re-scan (or digitally photograph) and send to us. Thank you.

Sincerely,

Brooke Schreier Ganz
Founder and President of Reclaim The Records

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