How To Find The Biggest Family History Genealogy Research Library In The World
When I first started on my journey of my family history genealogy research, I imagined it would be relatively easy to do…well I was totally wrong on that count! But I found a HUGE [sorry for shouting] resource that I just had to check out. Well, this became my second home and at one point one of the volunteers believed I was actually a church member…I’m not! But this is such a wonderful resource, you just can’t ignore it. It has allowed me to find information that was nearly impossible via any other means, at the time. I would like to introduce to you the International Genealogical Index or I.G.I. that was created by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
"The largest family history genealogy research library in the world..."
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has the largest family history genealogy research library in the world. But how and why did this happen, you may ask? And that’s a really good question. The Church puts huge importance on researching family history genealogy research work, more widely known as Family History. The reason for such interest in ancestors comes from the doctrines of the Church. Which I do not know enough of, only that they believe that after death, a person’s spirit has the opportunity to be reunited with other members of their immediate and extended family.
This is done by living members [of the church] who do the research to find the deceased members of their family. In the temples [as their church buildings are known as] members are baptized, or have other ordinances done, on behalf of those who have passed away (this is said to be done “by proxy”). Members of the Church are strongly encouraged to perform ordinances for people from their own family lines. Sorry, but an explanation is important to get some understanding of the why, now for the how…
TheLDSChurchgathers genealogical information in two different ways—through people who submit names of members of their own families, and from public records (as states and governments of different countries allow). These two methods of gathering information are called “submitting names” & “extracting names.” The work in both of these areas has become much easier with technological advances, and the computer age. People submitting names used to have to fill out by hand long pedigree charts [see images below], and to search for hours on microfilm, combing through the records for the names of their ancestors. This has now been nearly completely replaced by research being done on the computer.
The Church sends volunteers all over the world to find local history records like parish records, vital records (tax and census), military records, and immigrations records. These volunteers take pictures of the records so that they can be put on microfilm or turned into digital copies and stored.
The original records stay where they were found, a copy is sent to the owner of the record, the master copy goes to the genealogical library in Salt Lake City, Utah, and other copies are sent to libraries and individuals all over the world. The Church provides a service, by enhancing family history accessibility for people worldwide.
Many people outside of the Church are now becoming interested in doing their own family history. So, once you have gotten started, you can and should visit anyone of the 3,700 family history centers run by the Church around the world.
You can call any LDSChurch ward or stake to find out when the local family history center is open. There are volunteers who work at the family history centers who help with the use of available software and equipment. Information is also available on the internet through Family Search.org. Most of the information stored in the Family History Library can also be found here. Use of this resource is highly recommended in writing one’s own personal history or histories of close relatives, as doing this leaves an irreplaceable legacy for one’s descendants.
Information sourced from http://www.mormonwiki.com