FHL and 13 FHCs Get Ancestry.com Back

By Diane Haddad

After losing their free Ancestry.com access last spring, researchers at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ Family History Library (FHL) and 13 largest Family History Centers (FHCs) will once again be able to search the subscription site’s genealogy databases for free.

FamilySearch and The Generations Network (parent company of Ancestry.com) have reached an agreement that provides free on-site Ancestry.com access at the FHL in Salt Lake City and its regional FHCs in

• Mesa, Ariz.
• Los Angeles
• Oakland, Calif.
• Orange, Calif.
• Sacramento, Calif.
• San Diego
• Idaho Falls, Idaho
• Pocatello, Idaho
• Las Vegas
• Logan, Utah
• Ogden, Utah
• St. George, Utah
• Hyde Park, London, England

The agreement takes effect immediately.

Providing access at these centers was a financial decision, says FamilySearch spokesperson Paul Nauta. “The money would be best spent right now focusing on those 13 centers that accommodate a significant amount of patron traffic. We do desire to provide expanded access to all of our centers in the future.”

If your FHC isn’t on the list, see if a public library near you offers Ancestry Library Edition, a version of Ancestry.com databases library patrons can use free at subscribing institutions.

Until April 1, the FHL and almost all FHCs had enjoyed free, unlicensed Ancestry.com access since 2000. When it was unable to negotiate a formal arrangement with the LDS Church, The Generations Network discontinued the service (except a few databases for which contracts did exist and which are still available at all FHCs). See the March 29 E-mail Update newsletter for more details.