5 types of Searches on FamilySearch.org

Family Tree University
by Vanessa Wieland Online Editor
The weather is getting cooler and the holidays are looming, but this is a great time to work on your genealogy projects! Family gatherings provide a great chance to share your discoveries and learn more about your ancestors from other relatives. But if you want to get great-aunt Bethany talking, you’ll want to have some info to share. So before you head out for the holidays, take some time to do some free searches on FamilySearch.org.

FamilySearch.org is the world’s largest free genealogy website, and it’s packed with billions of digitized historical records, indexes, family trees, digitized books, and more-with new databases added all the time. 

Whether you’re a frequent FamilySearch.org visitor or a total newbie, there’s always something new to discover, and that’s where Family Tree University’s four-week course comes in. Become a FamilySearch.org Power User will teach you how to make the most of FamilySearch.org in your genealogy work. Read on to find out about 5 of the searches you can perform and reserve your seat in the December session today to find out how to make the most of all those records just sitting at your fingertips
5 types of Searches on FamilySearch.org
1. Start with the basics: Perform a global search through the millions of records that are online and indexed. 

2. Filter and refine: You can filter your results by birth, marriage, residence, and more to narrow down your results and increase your accuracy. Plus, refining your searches lets you pinpoint which records are most likely to be accurate, helpful if you’re searching for someone with a common name, for instance.

  3. Search a specific record collection: Cover specific place and time periods that are relevant to your ancestors. You can also find the relevant record collections by filtering down your list by place, date, and type of record.

4. Look in the IGI: Do an advanced search through the International Genealogical Index, which remains one of the most useful resources and contains more than 892 million family history records from two sources: Community contributed and Community Indexed.

  5. Search the Genealogies: Why reinvent the wheel when other genealogists may have done the work for you by other researchers? If you want more than just the facts (like personal knowledge and family lore), do this type of search. By default, clicking on the search button will search all four collections, but if you just want to search the Ancestral File or the Pedigree Resource File, you can pick and choose.

These are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to what kinds of searches you can perform on FamilySearch.org! Learn how you can make the most of this free resource so you can spend your holidays with your relatives – both past and present. 


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