Basic Search Rules
Vanguard Search (like all modern search engines like Google and Bing) searches words. So you should enter any information you know, such as first and last name, subdivision name, volume & page. Capitalization is not required. It doesn’t matter what order you enter the names. Vanguard will return every document that contains all the words in your search. They may not be adjacent and they may be in different fields. But every document will contain all the words you searched for. The most relevant results will appear at the top of the result list.
David Johnson (Grantor or Grantee name)
David Johnson oakwood (Grantor or Grantee and subdivision)
Use Filters to narrow your Search Results
After performing a search, on the left side of the screen you will see the Filters. If you know the type of document you are looking for, select it from the list. Or perform a doc type lookup by typing the name of the document type and then select from the list. Know the general time period when your document was recorded? Select the decade or the year from the Recorded Year filter.
Perform an Exact Match Search
Vanguard does its best to assign relevance to the various words you search. But sometimes you only want to search for an exact match. To do that, put quotes around your search phrase. Also remember that your phrase must EXACTLY match the indexed data. So for names, remember to enter the last name first. Vanguard will return every document that contains the exact phrase you searched for.
Vanguard Search provides two wild cards to assist with your searches:
* (Asterick) Replaces characters of any length
? (Question Mark) Replaces one character
Use wild cards to help find words that are spelled in different ways, or even mis-spelled.
Jo* matches JOHN or JOYCE or JOSE
Jo? matches JON or JOB or JOE
Gonzale? Matches GONZALEZ or GONZALES
Johns?n matches JOHNSON or JOHNSEN
Vanguard Search provides three keywords to create advanced queries. When using keywords, the keyword must be in ALL CAPS.
AND Returns all documents that match ALL of your search words
OR Returns all documents that match ONE of your search words
NOT Returns all documents EXCEPT those containing the word on the right side of the NOT
David AND Johnson This is the default. If you don’t enter a keyword, we automatically enter AND in every search.
David OR Johnson Returns every document that matches either word
“Johnson david” AND “Johnson andrea”
Returns every document that contains both of these exact matches
“Johnson david” AND “Johnson andrea” NOT mortgage
Returns every document that contains both names but removes any document that is a mortgage
“Johnson Robert” OR “Johnson bob”
Returns every document whether it’s indexed as Bob Johnson or Robert Johnson