Confused about where to start your LDS (Mormon) Genealogy research? Below, we have a few quick tips for you.
Find out if the temple work has already been completed. It’s not fun to do the research, collect the names and dates from your own efforts only to find that the work has been done 17 times over for an individual. There are a few quick ways to determine if the work has already been completed.
- Create an account with http://www.familysearch.org which is the main family history search engine provided by the LDS Church and is available for free.
- Obtain a copy of your membership record from your ward clerk so you can update your profile on Family Search. Doing so will let you view if the temple work has been done.
- Log in to http://www.familysearch.org and search for your ancestors. When you search, select International Genealogical Index or IGI then type in the name or names of the individuals you are searching for.
- A number of records may appear for the same name you are searching. Click each name that looks like a good match. This will take you to an information page about the entry. You’ll be able to see what work has been done by viewing the LDS Ordinances page. Make sure to check the different entries that were listed for your ancestor as different ordinances may have been performed and recorded as separate entries.
- If you find nothing in the searches there, take the information you’ve collected (preferably exported from Personal Ancestral File or PAF) to your local family history library. Family history libraries are free to use and can be found in many LDS / Mormon Church buildings across the world. The genealogy volunteers there can help you use the Temple Ready program to get the names ready to submit. It’s that easy.
Downloading information from Family Search. If you want to save new information about ancestors or the work that has already been completed that you see on the Family Search website, you can download genealogy pedigree information right from the website. However, you’re limited to the number of generations that you can download at a time. So, if you see that there are hundreds of records that you don’t have on your home computer, do yourself a favor and download the information the easier way. Believe me, I’ve spent hours and hours downloading the information from the web only to discover that I could download the information to my computer almost 4 times as fast by visiting my local family history library. The workers at the library will help you download the information you are looking for. You can then merge the records into your Personal Ancestral File program at home.