Category Archives: Internet Genealogy Searching

Free FamilySearch.org Family History Library Abundant Genealogy Webinars

Vicki’s note – 5-30-2017 article from Thomas MacEntee about free classes and webinars.  Thanks to Ron Zarnick who sent this to me.

cropped-a1

Free FamilySearch.org Family History Library Abundant Genealogy Webinars

Free Family History Library Classes and Webinars for June 2017 – Abundant Genealogy
https://abundantgenealogy.com/wp-content/themes/mh-newsdesk-lite/js/css3-mediaqueries.js

familysearch

[Editor’s Note: we received the following announcement from our friends at FamilySearch regarding their free classes and webinars coming up in June. Please take advantage of this great opportunity!]

The Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah, has announced its free family history classes and webinars for June 2017. Participants can attend in person or online. The June classes feature instruction on how to do research in China, Britain, and Germany, tips and tricks on using U.S. records. In addition, a variety of how-to classes will be taught which includes indexing in several languages, using FamilySearch more effectively, searching Civil War records and more. Mark your calendars for events you want to join so you don’t forget. Easily find and share this announcement online in the FamilySearch Newsroom.

Online classes are noted on the schedule as webinars. Webinar attendees need to click the link next to the class title at the scheduled date and time to attend the class online. Those attending in person simply go to the room noted. Invite your family and friends. All class times are in mountain standard time (MST).

If you are unable to attend a class in person or online, most sessions are recorded and can be viewed later online at your convenience. To access these, go to the archive for Family History Library classes and webinars.

DATE / TIME

CLASS (SKILL LEVEL)

WEBINAR | ROOM
Sat, 3 June, 1:00 PM Buscando antepasados en los registros civiles (Beginner) Webinar | B1 Lab
Mon, 5 June , 10:00 AM Using the FamilySearch Catalog Effectively (Beginner) Webinar | M Lab
Tues, 6 June, 11:00 AM Overview of FamilySearch.org (Beginner) Webinar | M Lab
Wed, 7 June, 10:00 AM Starting Family Tree: Preserving Memories Using Photos andDocuments (Intermediate) Webinar | M Lab
Wed, 7 June, 1:00 PM Researching in German Archives (Intermediate) Webinar | MF – B
Wed, 7June, 3:00 PM Ask Your United States Research Question (Beginner) Webinar | MF – B
Thurs, 8 June, 11:00 AM U.S. Vital Records Overview (Beginner)  Webinar | MF – B
Thurs, 8 June, 7:00 PM Language Indexing Event (1½ hrs.) (Intermediate) M Lab
Sat, 10 June, 9:30 AM Italian Language Indexing (1½ hrs.) (Intermediate) 2N Lab
Sat, 10 June, 9:30 AM Spanish Language Indexing (1½ hrs.) (Intermediate) M Lab
Sat, 10 June, 12:30 PM French Language Indexing (1½ hrs.) (Intermediate) 2N Lab
Sat, 10 June, 12:30 PM Portuguese Language Indexing (1½ hrs.) (Intermediate) M Lab
Mon, 12 June, 10:00 AM Using the FamilySearch Catalog Effectively (Beginner) Webinar | M Lab
Tues, 13 June, 11:00 AM Tips and Tricks for Using FamilySearch’s Historical Records (Intermediate) Webinar | M Lab
Tues, 13 June, 1:00 PM How to Find Ancestors in the Digitalarkivet (Beginner) Webinar | MF – B
Mon, 19 June, 10:00 AM Using the FamilySearch Catalog Effectively (Beginner) Webinar | M Lab
Mon, 19 June.1:00 PM Chinese Research on FamilySearch.org (Beginner) Webinar | M Lab
Tues, 20 June, 11:00 AM Family Tree Next Step: Attaching Non-FamilySearch Sources (Intermediate) Webinar | M Lab
Tues, 20 June, 1:00 PM Tracing Pre-1900 British Army Ancestry (Intermediate) Webinar | B2 Lab
Wed, 21 June, 1:00 PM Using the Genteam Website for Austrian and Czech Research (Beginner) Webinar | MF – B
Thurs, 22 June, 11:00 AM What’s New at FamilySearch.org (Beginner) Webinar | M Lab
Thurs, 22 June, 1:00 PM Scotlands People (Intermediate) Webinar | B2 Lab
Thurs, 22 June, 3:00 PM The Blue and Gray: Finding U.S. Civil War Records (Beginner) Webinar | MF – B
Mon, 26 June, 10:00 AM Using the FamilySearch Catalog Effectively (Beginner) Webinar | M Lab
Tues, 27 June, 10:00 AM Submitting Names for Temple Work (LDS Account required) (Beginner) Webinar | M Lab
Wed, 28 June, 11:00 AM Introducing Danish Probates (Beginner) Webinar | MF – C
Thurs, 29 June, 1:00 PM Your British Questions Answered (Beginner) Webinar | B2 Lab

About FamilySearch

FamilySearch International is the largest genealogy organization in the world. FamilySearch is a nonprofit, volunteer-driven organization sponsored by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Millions of people use FamilySearch records, resources, and services to learn more about their family history. To help in this great pursuit, FamilySearch and its predecessors have been actively gathering, preserving, and sharing genealogical records worldwide for over 100 years. Patrons may access FamilySearch services and resources free online at FamilySearch.org or through over 5,000 family history centers in 129 countries, including the main Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah.

©2017, copyright Thomas MacEntee.  All rights reserved.

CAGGNI Internet Special Interest Group Event

Vicki’s note – notice of an event from (CAGGNI) Computer Assisted Genealogy Group of Northern Illinois:

cropped-a1

(CAGGNI) Computer Assisted Genealogy Group of Northern Illinois- Internet Special Interest Group Event:

Upcoming event information:
Internet Special Interest Group Schaumburg Public Library
Date: 10 Jun 2017 12:45 PM CDT

Welcome to the CAGGNI INTERNET SIG!

Internet Genealogical Services include Ancestry, Family Search, My Heritage, Find My Past, WikiTree and many others.  The Internet Special Interest Group intends to review questions about these services and have a dialog on the advantages and features of the services used by members.  This complements the features available from computer programs such as Family Tree Maker or RootsMagic that exploit the on-line databases available from the internet services.

Facilitator:  Alan Wilson
For more information: Internet Special Interest Group

Best regards,
CAGGNI

New Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden Putting Library of Congress On-line

Vicki’s note – May 27, 2017 article “The US Library of Congress Just Put 25 Million Records Online, Free of Charge”, by DAVID NIELD on Sciencealert.com   

The new Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden is working on putting Library of Congress On-line.  I agree with her quote, “The Library of Congress is our nation’s monument to knowledge and we need to make sure the doors are open wide for everyone, not just physically but digitally too.” 
I give pause to the badly named workshop that the Library of Congress hosted- Hack-to-Learn workshop looking at how the data could be used.  Do we really want “library” and “hack” in the same place?
Look below for links to more newly on-line data from NASA, National Museum of Natural History, Unpaywall, and eight more:
cropped-a1

Knowledge is power, the old saying goes, but it isn’t much use if it’s hidden away – so we’re excited to learn that the US Library of Congress is making 25 million of its records available for free, for anyone to access online.

The bibliographic data sets, like digital library cards, cover music, books, maps, manuscripts, and more, and their publication online marks the biggest release of digital records in the Library’s history.

 

“The Library of Congress is our nation’s monument to knowledge and we need to make sure the doors are open wide for everyone, not just physically but digitally too,” says Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden.

“Unlocking the rich data in the Library’s online catalogue is a great step forward. I’m excited to see how people will put this information to use.”

Researchers and analysts will get most use out of the new records, but there’s plenty of potential for them to be used in apps and databases as well. The Library hosted a Hack-to-Learn workshop looking at how the data could be used.

The new mine of information covers records from 1968, and the earliest days of electronic cataloguing, right up to 2014.

“The Library of Congress catalogue is literally the gold standard for bibliographic data and we believe this treasure trove of information can be used for much more than its original purpose,” says the Library’s Beacher Wiggins.

Thanks to the spread of a little invention known as the internet, we’re seeing more and more libraries, organizations, and agencies put their valuable data online for all to use.

Last year NASA decided to make all of the scientific research it funds available on the web for free, hoping to spark further studies and “magnify the impact” of its papers.

NASA also allows developers to download and build upon its software applications, without paying any royalty or copyright fees, so whether you’re wanting to build a rocket or analyse satellite data, you can find a tool to help.

Want to know more about Darwin’s iconic On the origin of Species work? Point your browser at the American Museum of National History website and you can digitally leaf through 16,000 high-resolution images free of charge.

Meanwhile, the Unpaywall plug-in is designed to get past scientific journal paywalls legally and easily, so inquiring minds can learn more about our world without having to stump up for a subscription.

There’s lots out there. If you’re eager to get your hands on as much free educational material as possible, here are 8 awesome resources you can totally get behind.

That the US Library of Congress is adding to the trend is definitely welcome news – the library is the largest in the world, having been established at the start of the 19th century as a resource for Congress.

The Library’s collections include more than 38 million books and more than 70 million manuscripts, and now some of that vast pile of reference data and other resources can be accessed by anyone for free.

“We hope this data will be put to work by social scientists, data analysts, developers, statisticians and everyone else doing innovative work with large data sets to enhance learning and the formation of new knowledge,” says Wiggins.

Ancestry.com “Saves” are not Permanent Until You Save the Records to Your Computer

Ancestry.com “Saves” are not Permanent Until You Save the Records to Your Computer

Vicki’s note – a 5-26-2017 posting on Facebook from the FamilyHistoryDaily.com https://www.facebook.com/familyhistorydaily/  BLOG.

cropped-a1

Stop ‘Saving’ Records to Your Ancestry Tree Until You Read This

It’s no secret that we love free genealogy sites here at Family History Daily. But, we have to admit, we also like Ancestry.com. Next to FamilySearch.org, you’re not going to find a larger, more diverse genealogy website — and many of us are willing to pay their subscription fees for that reason alone.

But we also like Ancestry for the convenient free family tree they offer. It’s easy to get started with, maintain and share (or keep private). Plus, they’ve made it extremely convenient to add records from Ancestry’s databases. A couple of clicks and you can easily attach any number of sources, or names, to your tree (although we could tell you why that’s generally a bad idea).

But it’s this very convenience that poses a serious problem for many family historians. Most people who keep their trees on Ancestry.com probably regularly attach records to individuals using the ‘Save This Record’ function …..”

cropped-a1

Read the rest of the article here to find out how to save Ancestry.com records to your computer, not just to your Ancestry (online subscription) Family Tree.  Good hints on backing up your data, and updated information on the status of the replacements for Ancestry Family Tree Maker Software – TreeSync; and FamilySync from MacKiev.:

http://familyhistorydaily.com/genealogy-help-and-how-to/stop-saving-records-to-your-ancestry-tree-until-you-read-this/

EXCLUSIVE from Thomas MacEntee: Save 15% on NEW Legacy 9.0 Family History Software

Vicki’s Note – Well it finally is here – the new Version 9 update of Legacy genealogy software to keep track of your family history searches.  There is a free version available also. 

I bought Version 8, and like it, when I have time to do my own family genealogy.  And Thomas MacEntee has come up with a special discount, if you want to buy the enhanced version of Legacy 9.   Thanks Thomas.  I also suggest buying the CD as well as the download.  

Try the free version (see link below).  I found the enhancements worth paying for the paid version of Legacy 8.  I think that the new “hinting” feature (super leafs!) itself is going to be worth getting the upgrade of Legacy 9,

I cannot wait to try the other features.  They are amazing, and just upped the competition for other software providers.  Be sure to click on the link below to see details on the new enhancements.  I knew that they were working on this, but I am one joyous genealogist to see what fun is in store for me with all of the unexpected wonderful new features!

cropped-a1

EXCLUSIVE from Thomas MacEntee: Save 15% on NEW Legacy 9.0 Family History Software

by Thomas MacEntee

April 18, 2017

Legacy Family Tree has just released Version 9.0 of its amazing genealogy software – you can save 15% via Genealogybargains.com
http://www.legacyfamilytree.com/WhatsNew9.asp
 Legacy 9

Legacy 9.0 software for genealogy and family history research has just been released with amazing new features. Check out the new features you’ll find in the highly-anticipated new version of Legacy Family Tree Software:

  • Hinting: Legacy 9 sifts through billions of records from the key websites –  FindMyPast, FamilySearch, GenealogyBank, and MyHeritage – for new information, pictures, and stories of your ancestors. As you add to your tree, Legacy 9 begins the search – automatically!
  • Reports and Charts: See trends in your ancestors’ medical history with the new Cause of Death charts. Expand your genetic genealogy tools with the new X‐DNA color schemes. Get everyone involved at your next reunion or family gathering with Family Tree BINGO – play with cards of your ancestors, descendants, or a mixture. You can also now see your tree at a glance in the Family Dictionary.
  • FindAGrave.com Searching: One‐click access to your ancestor’s Find A Grave memorial. Create a list of people in your tree with or without Find A Grave IDs.
  • Online Backup: You’ll never worry about losing your data again. In addition to backing up to your hard drive, a thumb drive, or a DVD, you can now backup your Legacy to the Legacy Cloud. It also makes transferring to a new computer a breeze.
  • Stories: Preserve the stories of your ancestors or stories of your own. The new Stories tool lets you  record, organize and print multiple stories for any of your ancestors.
  • Hashtags: Create unlimited hashtags to describe your ancestors. Then search for or print a report of everyone who shares that hashtag. You’re no longer limited to 9 tags. Call them anything you want – #civilwar  #DNAtested  #farmer  #ProvenAncestor  #BrownHair
  • Compare 2 People: Researching two same‐named individuals? Having difficulty differentiating two John Smiths in the same place? The new Chronology Comparison report puts them side‐by‐side, color codes their similarities and differences, and helps you determine if they could be the same person.
  • Color Coding: Legacy’s popular color‐coding system has been expanded. Now enjoy the ancestor color coding in both the Index View and Name List, making it simple to know what part of your tree you are looking at.
  • And dozens of other enhancements: Digital pictures are now auto‐sorted by date. View all 9 tags in the Name List. Two additional  custom toolbar buttons, and much more . . . .

The upgrade price, if you currently have Legacy Deluxe, is $26.95. For first time buyers, the price is $34.95 for the download version of Legacy 9.0 Deluxe. Click here and use promo code thomas15leg at checkout and save 15%! To take Legacy 9.0 Standard for a test with a FREE DOWNLOAD, click here.

Click here for more information and to upgrade your current copy of Legacy or get the new version – via Legacy Family Tree

Disclosure statement: I have material connections with various vendors and organizations. To review the material connections I have in the genealogy industry, please see Disclosure Statement.

©2017, copyright Thomas MacEntee. All rights reserved.

50% Off MyHeritage from Thomas MacEntee

Vicki’s note – 50% Off MyHeritage from Thomas MacEntee.  Offer good through April 5, 2017. 

cropped-a1

 

LAST CHANCE!
How I Break Down Brick Walls with MyHeritage

LAST CHANCE! This is exclusive offer expires at the end of the day on Wednesday, April 5th. Don’t put this off – get ready for a year filled with awesome genealogy finds and get everything you need at MyHeritage! Click here to get started today.

“Why Should I Use MyHeritage?” Here’s Why . . .

Many of my followers know that I travel around the country presenting genealogy lectures and workshops. Did you know I fly over 50,000 miles each year and I LOVE connecting with other genealogists and sharing the latest genealogy and technology information.

As you can imagine many attendees will ask questions and want to “pick my brain” in between lectures and afterwards. This is another aspect of my job that I love since it gives me an idea of the current issues for genealogists and family historians. One question I get frequently: “Should I be using MyHeritage?” or “What’s the best site to use if I have European ancestry?” or “Why do you like MyHeritage?”

Do You Really Know MyHeritage?

I always tell genealogists that there is no “easy button” in genealogy and NO WEBSITE will provide easy answers. But you need to spend time understanding all the features of a site like MyHeritage and maximize your time spent there.

What do you really know about MyHeritage? These are the newer features I use the most at MyHeritage and the ones that have really helped me with my own research:

  • Pedigree Map™: “An innovative way to visualize your family history. Pedigree Map™ plots events from your family tree such as births, marriages, and deaths, as well as digital and scanned photos on an interactive world map.” When I have a research issue involving cluster research, I can look at migration patterns and more with Pedigree Map™. I also use this when I’m showing family members our family history since the visual components communicate far better than a family tree chart.
  • Global Name Translation™ Technology: “The technology covers given names and surnames and can tackle names previously encountered in the past, in addition to new names not seen before. It also utilizes extensive dictionaries built by MyHeritage to cover synonyms and nicknames.” I’m finding out more about my Henneberg ancestors and the German, Polish and Russian formats for their first names!
  • Photo Discoveries™: “Photo Discoveries™ makes it easy for you to add photographs to people in your family tree who currently do not have any photos, in just a few clicks, based on the work of other users. Many of us cherish the emotional moment when we see for the first time a photograph of our ancestor or relative whom we’ve never seen before.“ I’ve been able to work with other MyHeritage users and get copies of photos of my ancestors that I’ve never seen before!
  • DNA Matching: MyHeritage has made recent improvements in its DNA Matching technology and I’ve found lots of new matches. And these are in the 1st to 3rd cousin range, not 4th to 6th cousin like AncestryDNA’s matching. Also, I love that DNA Matches allows me to see the surnames I have in common with my matches!
Exclusive Offer – 50% Off MyHeritage

MyHeritage is offering a special discount on its annual Complete membership price exclusively to friends of GeneaBloggers. MyHeritage is one of the fastest growing genealogy sites and the best place to build your family tree, with historical collections including billions of records. This special offer will give you EVERYTHING on MyHeritage for the lowest price.

Click here to get your 50% off deal on the MyHeritage Complete package. The normal price is $250.74 USD and you’ll pay just $125.29 for a full year’s access to the following.

Private family site with unlimited capacity
Start a new tree or import GEDCOM
Unlimited photo storage
Apps for iOS/Android smartphones and tablets
Smart Matches™ with 38 million trees
Global Name Translation™
Record Detective™ II
Book Matching
Pedigree Map™
Sun Charts™
NEW Consistency Checker
NEW Photo Discoveries™
Over 7.4 billion historical records
Automatic Record Matches
Vital records from 48 countries
Military and immigration records
1790-1940 US census
1841-1911 England & Wales census
Compilation of Published Sources collection with over historical 450,000 books
Family Tree Builder software premium edition
Join 89 million users who have built trees with 2 billion people

Disclosure statement: I have material connections with various vendors and organizations. To review the material connections I have in the genealogy industry, please see Disclosure Statement.

©2017, copyright Thomas MacEntee. All rights reserved.

 

Historic Maps On-line

Vicki’s note – Family Tree Magazine article.  We have several map books in the Beloit Public Library Genealogy/Local History collection:
a1

Online Map Collections

3/27/2017
Locate the places your ancestors lived in the old maps found at these four free websites.

The 38,000-plus maps and other cartographic images here focus on rare 18th- and 19th-century North American and South American materials. Historic maps of the World, Europe, Asia and Africa also are represented. View maps, compare them side-by-side and download hi-resolution files.

This University of Georgia site features maps depicting the New World, Colonial and Revolutionary America, Revolutionary Georgia, Union & Expansion, the American Civil War, Frontier to New South, Savannah and the Coast and Transportation. Maps have been scanned in at a large scale, so you may need to adjust their size in an image-editing program before printing.

Library of Congress Map Collection

You’ll find historical maps galore on this site. The LOC has divvied up its digital map collection into seven categories: Cities and Towns, Cultural Landscapes, Military Battles and Campaigns, Conservation and the Environment, Discovery and Exploration, Transportation and Communication and General Maps. Almost all the maps can be downloaded.

Perry-Castañeda Library Map Collection

The collection includes both historical and present-day maps of the Americas and the world. Click on US to go to a page of links for each state. Among the historical map groups are Early Inhabitants, Exploration and Settlement, US Territorial Growth, Military History Maps and Later Historical Maps.

If you’d like to take your map research offline, Family Tree Books has a line of historical map books that collect the most useful maps from different areas and eras throughout history. Each book contains several maps of your ancestors’ hometowns and homelands, organized by time and indexed so you can find the online versions yourself:

Wonderful Resource – Stephen P. Morse’s One-Step Webpages

Vicki’s note –    Take the time to explore Stephen P.   Morse’s One-Step Webpages.  He makes shortcuts to access several resources for Genealogy, etc.  You will want to go to his website  http://www.stevemorse.org/ 

to see all of his valuable links to  many sites, especially Ellis Island and Castle Garden.           Or you can click on the green links below to each subject.

         One-Step Webpages

                          by

                Stephen P. Morse

This site contains tools for finding   immigration records, census records, vital records, and for dealing with calendars, maps, foreign alphabets, and numerous other applications. Some of these tools fetch data from other websites but do so in more versatile ways than the search tools provided on those websites.

About this Website and how to use it

AtoZ databases at Library

Vicki’s note – email I received 2/22/17 about the phone/address/jobs/businesses/address history database the Library pays for.  Useful for recent/living genealogy family searches.  You can send hundreds of emails from there for family reunions etc.  Link is on “Beloitlibrary.org” homepage and BLOG “Genealogy Links and Electronic Helps” tab.

AtoZ databases has some new features – you can save your search, and there is a “news” feature button for a business.

They give pre-scheduled 20 – 40 minutes training sessions on-line at 10:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m.  Mondays are general training; Wednesdays are job searching, Fridays are How to Grow a Business.

They also have video training on the site at all times.

AtoZdatabases URL change

a1

Hello everyone,

AtoZdatabases has recently performed a security upgrade to provide you with the best internet security when using AtoZdatabases.   We would like to request that you update the URL for AtoZdatabases to https://www.atozdatabases.com.    This will improve your security and access reliability.  Additionally, it will allow your patrons to see the green lock box in their browser when using AtoZdatabases, giving your users the reassurance that the site is secure.   Please feel free to call us with any questions or assistance that you might need.  Thanks much!

Christine Smailys

Sales Manager

How To Use Genealogy Website FamilySearch.org

Vicki’s note – suggestions from Family Tree Family article on Search.org – helpful free site:

a1

How To Use Genealogy Website FamilySearch.org

2/16/2017
Learn how to use FamilySearch with this easy-to-follow guide

A free website from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (the Mormon Church), FamilySearch has a large, growing collection of records, books, photos and family trees. Since going online in 1999, the site has expanded to encompass more than 2,000 historical record collections from around the world, more than 5.5 billion searchable names in old records, and more than 300,000 digitized books. You can search many of these records by name and other details, thanks to FamilySearch’s volunteer indexing program; but some collections are still awaiting indexing and must be browsed. All the genealogical bounty is accessible from tabs at the top of FamilySearch.org.

Use these strategies for success in finding your ancestors on FamilySearch.org:

Search for records.

Under the Search tab, click Records to bring up a search form for a person in indexed records. You can enter the first and last names and the date range and place for one or more life events, such as birth, marriage, death, residence (useful when looking for census records), death or “any,” which could be, for example, an immigration or military enlistment year. Narrow your search with names of the person’s parents, spouse or another person who might appear with him in records. You also can restrict your results to those from a certain country or of a certain type (such as census or military records).

On the search results page, look to the left for fields where you can adjust your search terms. Below that, you can use filters to narrow your search by collection (which lets you limit results to one or more databases), a birthplace in the record, a birth year in the record, and more.

A camera icon in the far right column for a match indicates a digital image you can download to your computer and/or add to your tree; no camera icon means it’s an index-only record. In a few collections, due to the wishes of record custodians, you must register with FamilySearch to access record images or use the website at a FamilySearch Center (also called a Family History Center; find one near by searching here online). Some collections, such as the 1901 census of England and Wales, link to a record image on a subscription site. You can view these with a subscription or by visiting a FamilySearch Center.

Browse record collections.

Searching a specific record collection that covers a place and time your family lived can help you focus on the most relevant matches. On FamilySearch, this technique also lets you access images of records that aren’t yet part of the site’s searchable indexes. Under the Search tab, click Records, then Browse All Published Collections to see a list of all records, both indexed and unindexed, arranged by place. If “Browse Images” appears in the Records column, none of the collection is indexed by name. If that column gives a record count, the collection is at least partially indexed. On the left, you can filter the list by name (enter any word in the collection title), place, date, record type and image availability. Click a title to search or browse that collection.

Find relatives in the Family Tree. 

The FamilySearch Family Tree has a lofty goal to create a family tree that includes all people. Other websites have large collections of trees that often duplicate each other, errors and all. In an effort to increase accuracy and decrease duplication, Family-Search has designed its tree with one profile per ancestral person, that anyone can edit. Unlike most of FamilySearch, you must register to use the Family Tree, but it’s still free.

To search the tree, look under the Family Tree tab and click Find. You can enter a name; gender; dates of birth, christening,  marriage, death and/or burial; and family members’ names.

Adding your relatives to the tree can help you find their records, as FamilySearch automatically searches its records for matches to people in the tree. Click the Family Tree tab to start your tree and either manually enter the information, or use “FamilySearch-approved” genealogy software that can reconcile data between the family file on your computer and Family Tree. Those programs include Ancestral Quest, Legacy Family Tree, RootsMagic and MacFamilyTree. To avoid duplicating people already in the tree, FamilySearch looks for a profile for each person you’re adding.

Click on an icon beside a name in landscape or portrait tree view for research help. Record hints are blue, research suggestions are purple, and data problems are red. Record hints and research suggestions also appear under the Details tab in Person view. You can review and verify possible matches, and attach the records to personal profiles.

Now you can search four large genealogy collections—FamilySearch, Ancestry.com, Findmypast and MyHeritage—from Person view. You still should try searching on other combinations of terms, such as a woman’s married name, and searching individual record collections.

Find Family Photos.

Click the Memories tab to see at a glance all the photos, stories, documents, audio and albums you or someone else has submitted and linked to your relatives. To search the Family Tree’s photos, stories and documents for any term (such as a name, place or other topic), look under the Memories tab and select Find.

Search user-submitted genealogies.

Under Search>Genealogies, you can search the old Ancestral File and Pedigree Resource File, two collections of family trees that researchers submitted over many years. Pedigree Resource File includes notes and sources, but Ancestral File doesn’t. Neither collection shows the submitters’ names. It’s worth mining these family trees for clues, but always try to verify the information with original sources.

A Genealogies search now covers several other collections, too: Community Trees were an effort to cover the genealogy of entire towns or communities. Oral Genealogies were obtained with personal interviews. The International Genealogical Index (IGI) has information on 430 million ancestors contributed by members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Find microfilmed records.

It’ll take years to digitize and index the massive holdings of microfilmed records at FamilySearch’s Family History Library in Salt Lake City. If you can’t visit the library, you can access most of its microfilm and microfiche for a small fee through FamilySearch Centers around the world.

Under Search>Catalog, run a Places search to find books and microfilmed records about a place. Search on all the towns, cities, counties, states and countries where your ancestors lived. Run a Surnames search to find family histories. Note that this search covers only surnames mentioned most often in a book, not every name. You can search on multiple terms, such as a surname and a place, but you’ll probably have better luck by entering these terms in the Keywords box.

Three icons are used in the Format column for microfilms in the catalog:

  • A magnifying glass icon appears if the film is indexed and searchable by name. Click it to search for a name.
  • A camera icon indicates that the film has been digitized. Click it to browse the images online.
  • A clickable film roll icon lets you order a film for viewing at a branch FamilySearch Center. Printed books don’t circulate to Family-Search Centers; click the link to “View this catalog record in WorldCat” to find the book in a library near you.

 Search digitized books.

Under the Search tab, click Books to search more than 300,000 digitized publications, including family and county histories, transcribed records and more. Using the Advanced Search, try searching on a name using the “Any is (exact)” option. To view a match, you must download the entire book (a PDF file), then use your PDF reader to search for the term in the book. Some digitized books can be viewed only in the Family History Library or a FamilySearch Center.

These tips will help you maximize FamilySearch’s power to help you find family:

Explore all the search options. The site’s record search doesn’t cover all its genealogical information. Under the Family Tree menu, choose Find to search the Family Tree. To search user-contributed genealogies, use Search>Genealogies. With Memories>Find, you might find photos and stories not attached to the Family Tree.

Search with wildcards. The FamilySearch records search lets you use the ? wildcard in a surname to represent one letter, and the * wildcard to represent multiple letters.

Look for indexes in imaged volumes. Browsing an unindexed collection? Digitized volumes may contain handwritten or typed name indexes. Look for a volume with “index” in the title, and check the beginning and end of individual volumes.

Start searching with a place. To focus your search on record collections related to a place, look under the Search tab, click Records and select a region on the world map. If you click on the United States and click New York in the popup menu, a New York research page comes up, where you can search indexed New York records. Scroll down to see collections that haven’t been indexed yet; click a title to browse.

Search from a Family Tree profile. FamilySearch can help you find records faster by filling in the search form with details on someone in the Family Tree. In the person’s Details view, look under the Search Records section of the right column and select FamilySearch, Ancestry, Findmypast or MyHeritage. You can attach a matching record from FamilySearch to everyone it pertains to in the tree. Now
MyHeritage can do that, too. Look for the link at the bottom of the record to “Attach source to FamilySearch.”

Get research advice. The FamilySearch Wiki, which you can access under the Search tab, offers research advice, such as how to access records for a particular state or country or how to find military records.

See recently updated collections. FamilySearch’s fast digitizing pace means you should check regularly for new records from the places your family lived. Under the Search tab, click Records, then click Browse All Published Collections to see a list of all records. Click the Last Updated column heading to move recently updated collections to the top.

Get more help. To find articles and videos about using FamilySearch, Click on Get Help, then Help Center and search on a topic. For example, search for Civil War, and the matches include an article on South Carolina Civil War service records of Confederate soldiers, videos on researching Civil War records and more.

Volunteer to index records. If you have a few minutes, you can index digitized records on your home computer and make them searchable. Click on Indexing>Overview to get started with FamilySearch Indexing.