Getting Started with Historical Records

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Timeless Books

Historical Records is a section of the FamilySearch Wiki focused on writing articles about genealogical collections provided online through We are very excited to have you with us. Whether you choose to be an official volunteer or an occasional collaborator, how long you work on our site and what you work on will remain completely up to you. If you are unsure where to begin, here are a few ways you can help out:

Sign up as an official Historical Records volunteer

Add content to our “Stub” articles

Share Your Ideas or Ask About the Wiki in an
Online Contributor Meeting

Post on Facebook

  • “Like” the FamilySearch Wiki Facebook page
  • Keep the page alive with experiences, events, insights, and questions

Join an Online Family History Community

These communities are being created to help you and others researching in the same area to help you:

  • Collaborate on your research
  • Ask questions and share answers
  • Share knowledge from personal research

To join a Family History Community on Facebook, simply visit one of the linked History Community pages, "Like" the page, and start posting.

United States of America:


To join a Family History Research Community on Skype, follow the following directions:

  1. Download the Skype program at and register for an account.
  2. Add the following as a contact - gmajande57 - and let her know which group you'd like to be added to. (see instructions for adding contacts)
  3. Join in the discussions! It's that easy. (see instructions for sending a message)

Skype Family History Research Communities for the United States of America:

  • California
  • Illinois
  • Mississippi
  • Missouri
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • Ohio
  • Pennsylvania
  • South Carolina
  • Tennessee
  • Texas
  • Utah
  • Vermont
  • Virginia
  • West Virginia

Skype Family History Research Communities for Other Countries:

  • Mexico
  • Denmark
  • England
  • Finland
  • Ireland
  • Sweden
  • Thailand

Any further questions? Visit the Skype Research Community wiki page or learn more about Skype in the Skype User's Guide.

Subscribe to FamilySearch Historical Records Forums

  • Subscribe to the forums
  • Ask and answer questions about genealogy and/or Historical Records
  • Help other genealogists with their family histories

General Links for Creating/Editing Wikis

An Introduction to the Wiki

  • Wiki Overview – Learn more about the purpose and direction of the FamilySearch wiki.
  • Help:Wiki Basics – Learn the basics to get the most out of the Wiki.
  • Help:Contributor Help – This page provides links to lessons and videos to help you register for FamilySearch and learn how to edit and update the wiki articles.

Creating New Wiki Pages

Help:Creating a Page – This page provides links to our formatting style guide, as well as a process by which you can create a completely new page to share the genealogy you know.

Before creating a new wiki article page, Remember:

  • First look for similarly titled Wiki articles you can add your content to. This helps us prevent the creation of duplicate articles.
  • Be very careful when you edit in wiki text. Some common errors found in the wiki include: capitalizing the title in the template, not repeating CID, and putting a space between the CIDs or between CID and the CID number.

Editing Wiki Pages

  • Help:Wiki Markup – Wiki markup is the text you use to format a Historical Records Wiki page. This page will explain the links, URLs, and formatting you will need to use.
  • Help:Formatting – This page will help explain formatting tricks to use in the wiki.

Deleting Wiki Pages

Deleting Wiki Articles – While wiki users are not generally authorized to delete pages, this page explains how you can mark an article as needing to be deleted.