Genealogy at a Glance: Family History Library Research

Family History Library ResearchRarely does it take a new genealogists long to recognize the LDS church’s influence and contributions to genealogical research. For decades the LDS church has collected resources and gathered records from around the world. Years of effort went into the provisioning of records on microfilm and microfiche. More recent efforts have centered around creating digital copies of records. The primary repository for all these records has been the The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ Family Library. The library is open to the public and, is commonly used by people of all faiths and beliefs, not just the Mormons. Here is just a little of what the library offers to any who care to visit:

  • The Family History Library collection includes over 2.4 million rolls of microfilm and 727,000 microfiche, 356,000 books and serials, over 4,500 periodicals, and 3,725 databases.
  • Records have been filmed in over 110 countries, territories, and possessions.
  • Researchers in the library have access to 475 computers, 408 microfilm readers, 36 microfiche readers, and 27 microfilm copiers.
  • The library has enough tables to accommodate 375 researchers.
  • Service is provided by 100 full-time and part-time professional staff, supported by 700 trained volunteers.

That is a lot of information to digest. To help would be library patrons, Carolyn L. Barkley has put together Genealogy at a Glance: Family History Library Research. This new contribution to the Genealogy at a Glance series, focuses on helping readers prepare for a research trip to the library and to help researchers get to know the available collections at the library. Collections fall into four broad sweeping core groups:

  1. Item dealing with the U.S. at the state or county level
  2. Items dealing with the U.S. at the national or regional level
  3. International records
  4. Family histories

This new guide also offers information regarding educational opportunities at the library, pointers to enjoying a visit to Salt Lake City, and other online resources.

Like all the Genealogy At A Glance sheets, this guide is a four-page, full-color limited brochure meant to be easily stored and sized to take with you when conducting related research. There are also a few author provided tips for the extra bit of knowledge and help.


Contents for this guide:

Quick Facts


Preparing for a Research Trip

  • Things to do Before Your Library Visit


  • State and County U.S. Resources
  • National and Regional U.S. Resources
  • International Resources
  • Family History Books

Educational Opportunities at the Library

Enjoying Salt Lake City

Other Online Resources


Order Genealogy at a Glance: Family History Library Research from Family Roots Publishing; Item #: GPC349, Price: $8.77.

Special Note: For 28 years now, Leland Meitzler has sponsored and co-hosted the Salt Lake City Tour. The Tour is a genealogist’s h(e)aven. In addition to the fantastic classes and speaker, as well as the on-hand professional research assistance, “there are numerous trips to The Family History Library, sponsored by genealogical societies and commercial firms.” “The Salt Lake Christmas Tour has been highly successful because we have the highest ratio of professional researchers to attendees of any genealogy research tour using the Family History Library.” Click here for more information on the Salt Lake Christmas Tour.

Other Genealogy at a Glance guides available at Family Roots Publishing: