by Michelle Kratts
If you have ever thought of researching your family tree, now is the perfect time. The Lewiston Public Library, specifically the Jon F. Popkey Genealogy Room, located at 305 S. Eighth St., Lewiston, is now the newest FamilySearch affiliate library. This new designation means that library patrons will have greater and more convenient access to the wealth of genealogical resources available through FamilySearch.
FamilySearch is the world's largest repository of free genealogical records and manages the famous Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah. It has amassed billions of birth, marriage, death, census, land and court records of genealogical significance from more than 130 countries.
FamilySearch is extending access to its collections by circulating microfilms of the historic records through select public libraries. The Lewiston Public Library is now one of those libraries. It is a priceless resource for local residents interested in discovering their family tree.
FamilySearch has more than 200 camera teams filming historic records in 45 countries on any given day. These records are then circulated to public patrons through FamilySearch centers worldwide, like the Lewiston Public Library. For example, FamilySearch has filmed more than 60 percent of the civil registration (birth, marriage and death records) of Italy. If you have Italian ancestry, chances are you will be able to extend your Italian research by conveniently using the FamilySearch films through the Lewiston Public Library.
Films may be ordered for the short term or for extended periods. Short-term loans will remain at the Lewiston Public Library for 90 days upon which they must be returned (by library staff). Extended loans do not have a return date. They will become a part of the Lewiston Public Library's permanent collection.
There are nominal shipping fees required in order to have the records sent to the Lewiston Public Library. Short-term loans are $7.50 and extended loans are $18.75. Once the film arrives, patrons will use the microfilm reader at the library to peruse it. The microfilm cannot leave the library premises. Genealogy volunteers and select library staff will be on hand to help patrons see what films are available, place film orders, and answer research questions. Patrons can also search the Family History Library Catalog online atwww.FamilySearch.org to see what records FamilySearch has available to order through the library.
The Lewiston Public Library will offer a class, "How to Grow Your Family Tree" on Tuesday, Oct. 16, at 6 p.m. The class is free and open to the public. Patrons will discover how they can access the wealth of genealogical resources now available at the Lewiston Public Library's Jon F. Popkey Genealogy Room.
Any questions, contact the library at 716-754-4720, or email Michelle Kratts at [email protected].
FamilySearch International is the largest genealogy organization in the world. It is a nonprofit, volunteer-driven organization sponsored by the Church 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 has been actively gathering, preserving, and sharing genealogical records worldwide for more than 100 years. Patrons may access FamilySearch services and resources free online at www.FamilySearch.org or through more than 4,600 family history centers and affiliate libraries in 132 countries, including the main Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah.