Best free online gen research site anywhere 26 April 2014 Reviewer: Leona Bell from California
135 of 277 people found this review helpful
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I have been using the genealogy research resources made available for free online by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints for quite a few years, including their current Family Search website. Even though there was some disruption of service for a bit while the church got their current family search site up and running, in general I have found this resource very useful. The church has extensive searchable records, with more being added over time. There are also some pedigrees (family trees) submitted by others who enjoy doing genealogy research on their families.
Registration to use the site is easy, and the initial search engine on the site is easy to use. You can set up a family tree for yourself and your family (information on those still living is kept confidential) and this can be added to as more research gives you more information. In addition, the family tree you create can be used to conduct more searching of the records the site has available and will still be there whenever you visit the site again.
The online help features (both FAQ type information, and online chat with a helpful genealogy research volunteer) can often steer one in the right direction for further search ideas.
Most records are not only transcribed, but also give access to an image of the original document.
Some records are only transcribed (no image) or are transcribed but the images are available on another online fee based site which is independent of the church. In addition, information on family trees submitted by other users usually contain some inaccuracies, but this is true of any other gen research site. These are the only downsides I have encountered so far.
This site is definitely the place to start and to keep on using as the church continues to add more records, and it is all provided for free to all by the church.
In summary, I would recommend Family Search to a friend.