Tucson Arizona Family History Center

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FamilySearch This article describes the services and resources available at a Family History Center, a branch facility of the Family History Library.
The Tucson Family History Center serves the Tucson area. Established in the 1980's, it houses a large collection of family histories and genealogy books donated by the Southern Arizona Genealogical Society and Pima County Library.

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Center Contacts and Hours

Location & Map:

  • 500 S. Langley Ave., Tucson, AZ  85710-4834 United States
  • The free standing building is located on the north east side of the Tucson East Stake Center parking lot, south of Palo Verde Park.  There is ample parking and handicap accessibility.
  • Location Map

Phone: 520-298-0905

E-mail: az_tucson@ldsmail.net

Facebook: Search "Tucson Family History Center" on Facebook to join our group to receive updates and information on Center events.

Open Hours (NEW):

  • Tuesday 10 am - 8 pm (if patrons are at the Center at 8 pm and want to keep working, we will remain open until 9 pm)
  • Wednesday 10am - 2 pm
  • Thursday 10 am - 8 pm (if patrons are at the Center at 8 pm and want to keep working, we will remain open until 9 pm)
  • Friday 10 am - 5 pm
  • Saturday 10 am - 5 pm
  • Closed: Sunday and Monday
  • Closed for Holidays - Thanksgiving: November 20 through November 27 Christmas: December 23 through January 7 (reopen January 8, 2019)
  • Closed for General Conference - October 6 (Saturday)
  • Closed for Cleaning and Vacations - August 7th through August 21st

Family History Story Time - Fall 2018

We are beginning the Fall 2018 session of Family History storytime in September. This is for preschool age children and their caregivers. Click here to sign up! https://familylocket.com/storytime/

Sessions will be held on Thursdays from 9am-10am at the Family History Center and begin on September 6, 2018. Learn about family history, heritage, and culture through stories, songs, activities, and play!

Family History Fair 2018 Recap

We had 260 people attend the Fair, with a great Keynote kick-off presentation by Bob Ives, Executive Director of The Family History Guide (see section below "Visit the Family History Guide"), on "A Digital Revolution in Family History". To see the class schedule click here. Class summaries and handouts are posted below.

What Do I Do Next? 5 Tips for Using FamilySearch Partners: Not sure what to do with the Family Search Partners that now appear on the Person page of the FamilySearch family tree? Have you clicked on one of them for fun and been completely overwhelmed with the amount of information you see?  Or were you underwhelmed with the lack of relevant information returned? Learn how to take advantage of these high powered programs and take your research to the next level. (handout)

Getting Organized: One Paper at at Time: Are you the lucky recipient of your family's genealogy? Do you have a box, a barrel, or maybe even a suitcase full of letters, documents, photos, family group sheets, etc?  You are probably feeling overwhelmed with either joy or despair.  Go ahead and be ecstatic that you inherited priceless stuff.  Don't despair because you'll learn how to take care of your papers, one step at time. (handout)

Irish Genealogy Research: Irish genealogy research has unique challenges due to destroyed and missing records, multiple jurisdictions and family naming patterns. Discover why most Irish research starts in the U.S. and how Irish migration patterns can provide clues to your ancestor’s origins.  Also, learn what Irish records do still exist and where to find them, including many online sources. An example of tracing a family using available Irish resources will be included. (handout)

Extra! Extra! Read all about it! The Ins and Outs of Newspaper Research: Newspapers are a great source of family history details. Newspapers give facts and tell stories of our ancestor's lives. We will look at different facts one can learn about their ancestors in newspapers, as well as see how newspapers share the stories about our ancestor's lives. We will also look at some of the newspaper databases one can use to help our family research. (handout)

The Ins and Outs of Jewish Genealogy: How does one go about researching their Jewish ancestor(s)? We will look at different ways to do this, as well as learn about different aspects about Judaism that will help one research. There are tips and tricks one can use to find out more information on your Jewish ancestor. We will explore some of these during this presentation. (handout)

Introduction to The Family History Guide: (handout)

Training with The Family History Guide: (handout)

Secrets to Successful Searches on Ancestry.com: Ancestry.com is the most popular website for genealogy research. However, the sheer amount of data can make searching for your ancestors seem daunting. This class will help you navigate the records more efficiently and offer suggestions for maximizing your online research experience. (handout)

Exploring Ancestry Family Trees: This class will teach you how to create and manage online family trees on Ancestry.com. We will look at features like the LifeStory feature, the enhanced Facts view, and tips for managing the shaky leaf hints. We will also look at how to transfer data between your Ancestry trees and FamilySearch tree for those with a LDS-Ancestry Membership. You will come away with a better understanding of how to use Ancestry’s powerful features to grow your family tree. (handout)

Deciphering AncestryDNA Results: “There are two kinds of genealogists: those who are overwhelmed by their DNA results and those who haven't done DNA testing yet.” (Kerry Scott, "5 Tricks for Using Evernote in Your DNA Research," Genealogy Insider, 10 November 2015). The technology for using DNA in our genealogy is still in its infancy. Ancestry.com is experimenting with some unique tools that use both your genealogy (family tree) and your genetics (DNA). However, most people misunderstand what their DNA results convey. If used correctly, you can make some wonderful new discoveries for your family tree. This class will help you to determine what DNA Circles, New Ancestor Discoveries (NADs), and Shared Ancestor Hints can and cannot do for you. (NOTE: It is recommended that you attend the “Getting Started with Genetic Genealogy” class before attending this one.) (handout)

How to Do Family History Research: Thandout)his class will focus on the basic steps for doing family history/genealogical research. Even though the tools we use may have changed, there is a tried and true way to get started. (handout)

Introduction to FamilySearch: This class will give you an overview of the sections of the FamilySearch.org website. It is one of the most popular genealogical resources in the world. The website is FREE to anyone, and contains family trees, memories, genealogy records, digitized books and many helpful resources. (handout)

FamilySearch - Searching Records: Learn how to find digital copies of original records, from all around the world. The FamilySearch.org website contains the largest collection of genealogical and historical records in the world. These are the records that document your family. (handout)

FamilySearch - Using the Research Wiki: Learn how to find and use the FamilySearch Wiki - the "Best Kept Secret" on the FamilySearch.org website. The world’s largest wiki specifically for genealogy and family history. Get genealogical research advice, or learn where to find record collections in over 86,951 articles. Search by place or topic. (handout)

Adding Memories to FamilySearch Family Tree: Learn how to add photos, stories, documents, and audio to the people on your tree. Make them more than a name and dates on your pedigree chart. Great safe, FREE location to save precious memories for now and future generations. (handout)

Google: Beyond the Search Button: (handout)

Paper Trail of Death: (handout)

Getting Started with Genetic Genealogy, i.e. DNA (Beginner) (handout)

Getting the Most Out of Your DNA Results (Advanced) (handout)

How to Produce Your Family History on DVD, including Software, Sources, Techniques Note the following are not meant as handouts, and are too large to print, but instead are tutorials and links from the presentation in different formats. (Word Document with Live Links) (PDF Version) (PowerPoint Version)

British and Welsh Research (handout)

FamilySearch.org Family Tree Questions and Answers (Bring your questions to discuss): (handout)

Merging and Correcting Errors in FamilySearch.org Family Tree: (handout)

FamilySearch.org Family Tree - Adding Source Records from Internet Sites: (handout)

Swedish Research: (handout)

Finnish Research: (handout)

Full FamilySearch Tree?  How to Find Names for the Temple:  If you have a full family tree and your great-aunt seems to have done everything, you may have a hard time finding names for temple work. Come learn a method for finding the family lines that need temple ordinances. We'll talk about analyzing your tree, keeping track of when your ancestors joined the LDS church, and researching the non-LDS branches. Your ancestors who were the first in their family to join the LDS church had siblings, nieces, nephews, aunts, uncles, and cousins who did not join the church. Researching these relatives and their descendants can open many new lines and help you find temple ordinance work to reserve. (handout)

Immigration - They Came From Where? (handout)

Naturalization (handout)

Native American Research (handout)

African American Research

Spanish Speaking Countries Research

Fun Family History Discovery Activities for Children, Youth, and Families

Strategies to Use When You Hit A Roadblock: Researching your genealogy can be difficult. When records don't seem to contain the evidence you need to add the next generation to your family tree, what can you do? This class is about the research method that professional genealogists use to complete difficult client projects. We'll talk about choosing a research question and manageable project size, analyzing existing documents, creating a timeline of known facts, learn about records availability and the locality, forming a hypothesis, making a prioritized research plan, logging research, writing conclusions, and listing ideas for future research. (handout)

How to Involve the Whole Family in Family History Fun: Every family member connects with their family history in a different way. You may be the genealogist and researcher, but perhaps your other family members are not. Your brother might be the storyteller who gathers his nieces and nephews to tell them funny stories from the past. Your sister may be the musician who sings the traditional Christmas song each year, then writes down the notes and words and shares it with everyone. Grandma may help find names for the temple and the grandchildren may help complete baptisms in the temple for them. Your brother may be the technology expert who digitizes the old videos and slides and shares them with everyone. Your daughter may enjoy typing old handwritten documents into FamilySearch and your son may like learning about stories of his ancestors in the military. Everyone has a contribution to make to preserving family history. You can have a tremendous influence in your family by inviting others to use their talents to engage in family history. Come learn age appropriate activities to invite the children, youth, and young adults in your family to help with. (handout)

Visit The Family History Guide

Go to www.thefhguide.com for a free learning, resource, and training center for genealogy.

The Family History Guide Mission Statement: "Our mission is to greatly increase the number of people actively involved in family history worldwide, and to make everyone's family history journey easier, more efficient, and more enjoyable."

Here are some of the unique features you'll find on the site:

  • Over 1,200 Goals for learning, supported by over 2,300 flexible Choices
  • Step-by-step instructions to make learning easier
  • Links to over 2,400 videos and articles from FamilySearch, Ancestry, and more
  • QUIKLinks that take you to record searches from multiple sources, with a single click
  • A Vault full of additional resources not included in the learning goals
  • Project Tracker sheets and Training materials for self-study or group instruction
  • Family history resources for children and for LDS interests

Past events

Family History Fair 2017 - Click here for the list of courses and links to class handouts.

Family History Fair 2016 - Click here for the list of courses and links to class handouts.

Family History Fair 2015 - Click here for the list of courses and links to class handouts.

Family History Fair 2014 - Click here for the list of courses and links to class handouts.

Family History Fair 2013 - Click here for the list of courses and links to class handouts.

Center Resources

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Collections 

  • The Cox Collection: This microfilm collection contains copies of US county histories published in newspapers in the 1875-1900 period, as well as city directories for major cities of the time.
  • Tucson FHC catalog Several thousand donated books, film and fiche as well as webinars are part of our holdings.This User guide explains how to search it.
  • FHC Portal: This center has access to the Family History Center Portal page which gives free access in the center to premium family history software and websites that generally charge for subscriptions.  Websites available are:
    • 19th Century British Library Newspaper Digital Archive 
    • Alexander Street Press  (Civil War)
    • American Ancestors (New England Historic and Genealogical Society)
    • Ancestry.com
    • Create your "Who Do You Think You Are?" story for free
    • Find My Past (UK)
    • Fold3.com (military records)
    • Geneanet (NEW)
    • Historic Map Works
    • Kinpoint
    • MyHeritage / World Vital Records (all content has been added to MyHeritage.com)
    • Access Newspaper Archive
    • Paper Trail
    • ProQuest Obituary Listings
    • Puzzilla.org
    • ArkivDigital Online - Swedish church records
    • Scottish Records (DOS program version)

Periodicals and Magazines

  • Internet Genealogy
  • NGS quarterly
  • American Ancestors (NEHGS online magazine)

Computer Software Programs and Resources

We  have deluxe versions of the following genealogy management software for you to "test drive."

  • Ancestral Quest 15
  • Legacy 9
  • Roots Magic 6 and 7 (software programs that interact with Family Search and My Heritage)

Additional computer resources include:

  • Genealogy Bank
  • Family Tree Maker disks (some--check catalog)
  • Some Pedigree Resource File disks
  • PAF 4 and PAF 5
  • Genelines Universal Edition
  • Generation Maps Consultation Software
  • Charting Companion for FamilySearch
  • Map My Family Tree
  • MagiKey Family Tree

Family Search Compatible and Verified Programs

  • Many interesting and helpful programs that tie to information in Family Search can be found at FamilySearch.org/apps

Hardware and Equipment

  • 10 patron use computers
  • microfilm digital copier
  • scan pictures directly to FamilySearch (NEW)
  • flatbed scanner

Center Services

Individual Consulting

  • Center staff are available for personal consulting with no appointment needed and at no cost

Staff Research Specialties 

  • British Isles: Saturday, 10am - 2pm
  • US: Thursday, 10am - 2pm
  • Other specialty times and languages available; send your request to az_tucson@ldsmail.net

Presentations

  • Center staff are available for presentations to community and religious groups. Please send an email to the address above with your request. There is no charge for such presentations.

Volunteer at the Center

  • Community volunteers with an interest in family history, a desire to serve others, and are willing to commit to a weekly or bi-weekly shift for at least one to two years are invited to join our staff.  Training will be provided.  More information can be found on the justserve.org website. Contact the temple and family history consultant - center through our email above for specific opportunities that fit your schedule.