Family History Library

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Revision as of 18:00, 10 September 2013

Family History Library.jpg
Welcome to the




Recent changes to staffing in the library --6 Sep 2013

Within the Family History Library, we have made some recent changes. In order to serve a growing worldwide community, the expertise of our research consultants is now being shared with teams focused on providing enhanced patron services to family history centers throughout North America, Latin America and Internationally. To meet these growing worldwide needs, resources have been reallocated. However, in order to continue providing patrons at the Family History Library with excellent service, research consultants who remain in the library have been relieved of other responsibilities so they can focus their full time and attention to our patrons. In considering this new patron service model, we reviewed peak times at the library and have staffed accordingly, offering expert research consultant counter help during peak hours. The staffing change only effects 14 hours of the 60 hours we are open each week. Also, during the 46 peak Library hours, more research consultant staff members are out helping patrons than ever before. We have moved our consultants out from behind staff doors to assist at research counters and out on the patron floors.

To help supplement the staff we are reaching out to the community and volunteers. There is a common misconception that only research consultants can offer assistance. Many of our missionaries and community volunteers are accredited genealogists and experts in their fields of research. All of our 600-plus trained volunteers donate their time and talents to assist our patrons in their research goals. The change has only been in effect for four days so we ask for your patience and understanding as we implement and refine the new patron service model. The Family History Library is open more hours, provides more computers, printing options, and professional help than any other genealogical library, society, or archive in the world. We remain committed to providing all of these services free of charge to patrons from all over the world. If you are interested in becoming a Family History Library Volunteer, please contact the Family History Library at 801-240-6536.

Contact Information



35 North West Temple Street
Salt Lake City, Utah 84150-3400


  • Research Help: 866-234-2067
  • Classes, Hours, Parking: 801-240-6536
  • Lost and Found: 801-240-3527

Hours and holidays:  Click here or call the phone number above.

Parking and Transportation:

We know that parking is an issue downtown, to help assist you in completing your family history work at the Library, the following free parking is available:

  • M-F from 4:30 -9:00 p.m. and all day Saturday the parking lot located behind the Church History Museum is available for free parking.  Some limitations apply - the lot will be closed during Conference Center events and from the day after Thanksgiving to January 2.  Parking is subject to availability.
  • For a Family History Library area pay-parking lots map click here. Pricing is subject to change and is not controlled by the Family History Library.  As of July 16, 2013 the following fees apply:
  1. Salt Palace Parking a maximum of $12.00 per day.
  2. Lot on the northwest corner of North Temple is $2 under1 hr, $5 under 2 hrs, $8 under 12 hrs
  3. The JSMB underground parking is a flat rate of  $10. 
  • For TRAX (light rail) and bus public transportation information click here

Copy Fees:

  • Black and white 8 1/2 x 11: U.S. $.05
  • Black and white 11 x 17: U.S. $.10
  • Color 8 1/2 x 11: U.S. $.30
  • Color 11 x 17: U.S. $.60

More copy information

Library Rules

1. Set cellular phones to silence or vibrate. Phones should not “ring” in the Library. Quiet
cell phone conversations are permitted in the Library. Please be respectful of those
around you. Library staff is authorized to request that patrons discontinue phone
2. Do not leave personal belongings unattended. The library is not responsible for items
that are lost, stolen or damaged. We encourage patrons with laptop computers to lock
them to the furniture where they are seated.
3. If you plan to vacate a microfilm reader for more than 60 minutes or a computer for
more than 15 minutes, please take your material with you. If demand is high materials
may be removed by staff and stored at the Access Services window.
4. Please handle the equipment, books, and other materials carefully.
5. Please re-file microfilms and return books to the red shelves, or red carts, near the
row from which they came.
6. When using photocopy equipment, please limit yourself to five copies when others
are waiting. While using Scan Pros please limit usage to 15 minutes while others are
7. If readers or copiers malfunction, please inform an Access Assistant at the Access
Services window. An “out of order” sign will be placed on non-operational equipment
until it can be repaired.
8. Announcements are made 45 minutes, 30 minutes and 15 minutes prior to closing of the
Library. Please leave the Library prior to closing time.
9. Food and drinks are permitted only in the main floor snack room. (Water bottles with
closed lids are permitted.)
10. Animals: No animals are allowed in the Family History Library unless they are trained
service animals assisting persons with disabilities.
11. Clothing and Dress Standards: Appropriate dress is required in the Family History
Library which includes shirt, pants and shoes at all times.
12. Children under twelve must be accompanied by an adult.
13. Smoking is not permitted anywhere in the building or on the grounds.
14. We invite patrons to use the Patron Feedback link on patron computers to share
rewarding experiences, compliments, suggestions, and concerns.
15. Please observe all posted instructions.

Library Background

• Founded in 1894 to gather genealogical records and assist members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints with their family history and genealogical research • Largest library of its kind in the world • Open to the general public at no charge • Visited by an estimated 1,900 or more individual patrons and groups each day.

Library Resources

Patron Class Schedule

Online Resources

FamilySearchis the online web site which hosts: • Historical Records (images and indexes). • Digitized Books. • FamilySearch Research Wiki. • Online training classes. • The Ancestral File. • The International Genealogical Index. • The Pedigree Resource File database. • US Social Security Death Index.

The FamilySearch Library Catalog online describes the library's holdings.

Collection Description

  • The collection includes over 2.4 million rolls of microfilmed genealogical records; 727,000 microfiche; 356,000 books, serials, and other formats; 4,500 periodicals; 3,725 electronic databases.[1]
  • Historical Records contains over a billion names of deceased individuals from census, vital records, and other records from over 100 countries on each of the seven continents. It includes indexes and images of many original records.
  • Digitized Books contain searchable copies of over 40,000 family history and genealogy printed works.
  • FamilySearch Research Wiki contains research advice and direction in over 70,000 articles. Individuals are able to add or modify content to share their knowledge.
  • Learning Center contains hundreds of online classes on a variety of subjects for many different countries and most genealogical principles and processes.
  • The Ancestral File database contains more than 36 million names that are linked into families.
  • The International Genealogical Index database contains approximately 600 million names of deceased individuals. An addendum to the International Genealogical Index contains an additional 125 million names. These names have been patron submitted or extracted from thousands of original birth, christening and marriage records.
  • The Pedigree Resource File database contains over 100 million names that are linked into families.
  • Records available are from the United States, Canada, the British Isles, Europe, Latin America, South America, Asia, Australia and Africa.
  • Millions of records are added to the collection each month.
  • A majority of the records contain information about persons who lived before 1941.
  • Approximately 200 cameras are currently microfilming records in over 45 countries. Records have been filmed in over 110 countries, territories, and possessions.


Gifts of family histories, organized collections, and other records that contain genealogical information are welcome. For example, you can write a history of your family and donate a copy to the Family History Library. When you donate an item, you can indicate that you would like the item microfilmed, as well. More details about donations.

View Guidelines for Gifts, Donations, and Loans to FamilySearch.

If you have questions about donations please contact:

Book Donations at:  


Patron Resources

  • Over 500 patron computers
  • Over 300 microfilm readers
  • 36 microfiche readers
  • 27 digital microfilm and microfiche copiers
  • 3 HD book scanners
  • 14 book copiers
  • Seating capacity for 375 at tables
  • Orientation and research classes

Book and Film Numbers Used by the Family History Library

The Family History Library has used different methods to number its growing collection of books and films since its start in 1894. Formerly used numbers are still found in old family records in the lists of sources for the data. These old numbers are no longer used so the current numbers for the books and films must be determined.

For an explanation of the different systems used over the years (including the current system), and to see tables for converting old book and film numbers to new, click here.

Request a Vault Film before visiting the Family History Library

What's New at the FamilySearch Library

Check out the new books that have been added to the collection! Please note that some browsers have problems with PDF files and to open these you may need to 'Right Click' and open in a new window.

US/Canada Collections (current)

British Collections (current)

International Collections (current)

Family History Collections (current)

Staff/Reference Collections (current)



Group Visits

  1. Guidelines for scheduling groups at the Family History Library.
  2. Important information for a successful visit.
  3. Group visit options.
  4. Make a reservation.

FHL visitors describe their experiences:

FamilySearch Centers

Alternate Repositories

If you cannot find a source you need at the Family History Library, try one or more of these other repositories.

Repositories with very large genealogical collections

  • Library of Congress, Washington, DC, Local History and Genealogy Reading Room is part of the world's largest library including 50,000 genealogies, 100,000 local histories, and collections of manuscripts, microfilms, maps, newspapers, photographs, and published material, strong in North American, British Isles, and German sources.
  • National Archives I, Washington DC, census, pre-WWI military service & pensions, passenger lists, naturalizations, passports, federal bounty land, homesteads, bankruptcy, ethnic sources, prisons, and federal employees.
  • Allen County Public Library (Indiana) home of the Periodical Source Index (PERSI), more than 350,000 printed books and 513,000 items of microfilm/fiche including family histories, censuses, city directories, passenger lists, military records, local histories, American Indians, African Americans, Canadian, British, & German collections.[2]

Repositories with significant Latter-day Saint collections

  • Church History Library, Salt Lake City, LDS history 1830-now: diaries, manuscripts, Church records, photos, oral history, architectural drawings, pamphlets, newspapers, periodicals, maps, microforms, audiovisual material[3]
  • Daughters of Utah Pioneers, SLC, the Museum displays artifacts, and the History Department collects and preserves about 100,000 histories of pioneers who set out for, settled, or were born in Utah by 10 May 1869.[4]
  • Utah State Historical Society, SLC, family histories, photographs, books, manuscript collections, telephone directories, maps, newspapers, yearbooks, and periodicals are available in the Research Center and online.[5]

Neighboring repositories


  2. "Genealogy Center" in Allen County Public Library [Internet site] at (accessed 18 October 2008).
  3. "Church History Library and Archives" in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints [Internet site] at (accessed 18 October 2008).
  4. "Pioneer Museum" and "History Department" pages in International Society ~ Daughter of Utah Pioneers [Internet site] at (accessed 18 October 2008).
  5. "Research Center and Collections" and "Collections Available at the Research Center" in Utah State History [Internet site] at (accessed 18 October 2008).