Your Family Tree Field Guide: Know Before You Go

By Marcia Yannizze Melnyk Premium

Before visiting a research facility, be sure you can answer these questions:

1. What are its holdings? Do the records cover the time frame you need — and are they available for your use?

2. Does the facility have manuscript holdings or another special collection related to your research?

3. What are the rules for accessing the records? What materials may you take into the research room?

4. Are photocopies allowed or will you have to transcribe the records?

5. What are the research hours? Some facilities have different business hours and research hours. Are there any special closings during your visit?

6. Are there eateries nearby, or should you bring your own food and drink? Does the facility have a lunchroom? Is it air-conditioned? Are portable computers allowed? Will you have access to electrical outlets to plug in your laptop?

7. Is there public transportation to the facility? What parking is available?

From the September 2004 Trace Your Family History.