Parke County, Indiana—with scenic roads and 31 covered bridges, promotes itself as the covered bridge capital of the world. The county features expansive Amish country where visitors can relive America’s past through many restored historic buildings and communities.
In 2009, when County Recorder Mary Jo Harkrider needed to create microfilm images of mortgage, tax and other property documents dating back to 2005, as required by Indiana State law, she faced a potentially expensive and time-consuming process. Every document the county produces is considered a permanent record and must be copied to microfilm — which is guaranteed to last up to 500 years. Documents the county produces include property deeds, original mortgages, modifications to mortgages, mortgage satisfactions, federal tax liens, powers of attorney, lease agreements, and property surveys.
“The microfilm process can be expensive due to the manual processes involved, and we have records we don’t want to remove from the county office,” Harkrider said. “We knew it would be expensive to hire a firm to come on-site and scan all the documents, which would also be disruptive to our daily tasks in servicing the citizens of the county.”