You’ve Visited the Family History Library—Now What?

October 5, 2019  - by 

Congrats on making the trip to the Family History Library! Isn’t it amazing the difference that perusing records in person and talking to an expert can make?

Hopefully you walked out the door with a promising lead or two—something to help you take your personal family history journey one step farther!   

Upward and Onward: Your Family History Journey Continues

Now that you are home, you might be wondering what happens next. Maybe you’re not sure what to do with the information you found, or maybe you’ve burned through all the leads you were so excited about!

Don’t worry, the journey is just beginning. You don’t have to be in Salt Lake City in a state-of-the-art library to continue making discoveries. Consider the following ideas and resources to help you keep the momentum going.

Online Discovery Experiences

A girl looks at her phone with her brother after visiting the family history library

All those fun discovery experiences that you had at the library? Most of them are available through our website. Visit them anytime you want to relive the excitement or take a deeper dive (or share with your family!).

Family History Centers and Affiliate Libraries

Whether or not you live close to the Family History Library, chances are that you may be within traveling distance of a family history center or a library that is affiliated with FamilySearch. These facilities provide access to many records and services that you can otherwise access only from a computer or device inside the library.

You’ll also meet volunteers at a family history center who can support you and help answer any questions you might have. Use our building locator to find the family history center nearest you.

Not within range of a family history center or affiliate library? That can change. Suggest to your local library that they become an affiliate of FamilySearch. This collaboration will make records and services available to you and to your community, giving more people the chance to discover the magic and joy of their own family’s history.

FamilySearch Research Wiki

A woman helps her father with doing research on his ipad.

The online wiki is a great place to turn for extra information. You can find pages about a variety of topics, from research tips to specific localities. The wiki also provides lists of available communities that may be able to answer your questions.

Plan a Second Trip to the Family History Library

Now that you’ve already been to the library, you know all the great resources that are available to you there when you visit in person. If another visit is feasible, consider what tasks you could complete in advance of the trip to make your time there even more rewarding!

Above All, Stay Diligent

Family history is not for the faint of heart—don’t let an empty line on your family pedigree chart get you down!

You Can Do It!

Remember this: among all those long hours of research and red herrings (you found Jane Thomas—only it’s the wrong Jane Thomas!) are those golden glimmers of discovery that will inspire members of your family for generations to come.

So keep going! You’re making history—and an awesome history at that.

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  1. Thank you at the Family History Center in Salt Lake City for the recent assistance I received as a Tallahassee Fl. 1st Ward Temple and Family History Consultant. The call was on behalf of a non member Patron visiting our center. She had been there several years ago and new we could help her in her research. Her issue was technical in logging in. She received assistance by phone with a FHC representative.
    She successfully logged on and had a wonderful experience that day.
    Thank you for your assistance.

  2. I do not see where you are able to follow your family history when your name is by adoption. I know my birth name and birth fathers family .

  3. Oh, you must go to your local FHL. So much to gain with one on one help.

    Even though I am not Mormon I was at our local FHL so much that I was asked to be a librarian. I gladly accepted and was thrilled every time I helped a patron. I put out a semi monthly newsletter for several years and organized several seminars.

  4. Thanks for the pep talk I love family history and have been to Salt Lake City but I do have a brick wall to overcome due to my ancestor being base born but i am hoping my DNA will give the answer some day. I know some early family members by the name of Butterworth joined the church in the early days when pilgrims left England way back.

  5. How can I find my great grandfather if he disowned his family. His name shows up in two census ‘ in St. Louis,MO and in Ohio. One as David Covington with wife Ellen, one in Ohio as Daniel and Hellen. Both with the same several children. He had said he was born in Lexington, Fayette county, Kentucky. He was a St. Louis policeman and died in 1910.? I’ve searched for years with no luck.

  6. Thank you. We all need this after a trip to the Family History center. And beneficial when talking with others too.