Cyndi’s List — what would I do without it?

I am sitting here putting together some syllabus/handout materials for upcoming presentations. It struck me how many times I cite in this material. Every genealogist should know about it. It links me and my audiences to thousands and thousands of websites related to genealogy and history.

On 4 March 2011 Cyndi’s List will turn 15. I know she has a teenage son and this means two teenagers in her house. (Oh I don’t envy her! However, I know her and she does quite well with both teens!) I went to her site and found these statistics. 

  • Cyndi’s List has been online since March 4, 1996.
  • In the beginning there were 1,025 links. Today there are more than 291,000.
  • This site continues to be one of the top research spots online for genealogy.
  • Cyndi’s List has always been free for everyone to use.
  • To date, Cyndi’s List has been supported solely by advertisements.
  • This site is in the process of a major upgrade, the first since 1998. 
  • Goals for upgrading would include easier use for both the administrator and site visitors, making adding and updating links a quicker process for everyone. Improved navigation and other features are also on the to-do list. 

For all these years she has been doing this for all of us. Out of her own pocket with just a bit of assistance from advertisements. It’s time we thanked her and did our little bit to support her upgrade efforts. She doesn’t know I am campaigning for this. But our donations will help her achieve the upgrade more quickly. Cyndi’s List is a one-woman business and she spends most of each day maintaining the site. It’s a full time job she does for us and for which she receives no paycheck other than a bit from the advertising. I can’t even begin to imagine all the time it takes to post new links, correct old ones, and double check everything.

I did ask her a few questions and found out it costs $300 a month to host the web site on a commercial server. The upgrades will be done by a professional web development company to make the site an easier thing to maintain and to use. 

If you go to the site, you can send her a bit of money to help out with something that will benefit us all. I am going to do just that.

Thank you, Cyndi!

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    6 comments on “Cyndi’s List — what would I do without it?

    1. I met Cyndi many years ago on a genealogy chat on MERC. She was constructing her list at that time.
      She also does public speaking all over the country for Genealogy groups. I have heard her at our First Families of the Twin Territories annual meeting in Oklahoma.
      She is a dynamic speaker ! So if any of you are looking for a speaker for your Genealogy Society, I can highly recommend Cyndi.

    2. Everyone who has posted, or will read this, please “like” Cyndi’s List on Facebook. Cyndi hopes to get to 15,000 fans by her 15th anniversary in March.

    3. A Great Big Thanks to Cyndi! Due to her web site I was able to do much more and for Free! If she had not been free for me then I would have not been able to go forward.
      I will gladly send her a donation to help her And send word out to my society membership and all the classes in my area to consider doing the same. Happy 15th Birthday to Cyndi’s List and another big Thanks from me!

    4. What a great article about Cyndi’s List. I had no idea either that it was a one woman operation! It is always one of my “go to” sites when I am doing research and I promote it on my own blog.

      Thank you Cyndi for all your hard work, it is greatly appreciated and thank you Paula for bringing this to our attention.

    5. I am thankful for Cyndi’s work and her list. It was one of the first genealogy related websites I discovered when I began using the Internet for research. That it was free was such a bonus. Can it really be 15 years? And bigger, better, and free. I still use Cyndi’s List. How could it ever be replaced? Thanks, Cyndi!

    6. For some reason, I had never thought of Cyndi’s list as being a one-person operation. Somehow, I just assumed that it had started out that way, but that by now, it was a large operation with many employees.
      I think you are absolutely right about those of us who use the site making a contribution.

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