Genealogy from the perspective of a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon, LDS)

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Ground Breaking for First-of-its-Kind St. George FamilySearch Library

If you have had concerns (like I have had) about the future of various FamilySearch facilities around the world, then you need to carefully read this press release from FamilySearch about the new "first-of-its-kind" St. George, Utah FamilySearch Library. It does not take a whole lot of speculation to answer some of the questions about the status of existing facilities, including those in Orem, Utah and Mesa, Arizona from the direction indicated by this statement. I have been hearing about the "new" St. George facility for two or three years. Some time ago, I visited with the Directors of the St. George FamilySearch Center and had a tour of their then new facility in an office building. I heard rumors that FamilySearch was thinking about building a new facility at that time. Frankly, I thought they had already built it and it was functioning. I guess I needed to stop off in St. George and see for myself.

Well, here is the Press Release. I have not changed anything from the one I received by email.
For Immediate ReleaseAugust 15, 2015
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Breaks Ground for First-of-Its-Kind St. George FamilySearch Library ST. GEORGE, UT (AUGUST 15, 2015)—The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and its nonprofit subsidiary FamilySearch International broke ground today on a first-of-its-kind facility in St. George, Utah. When complete, the state-of-the-art St. George FamilySearch Library will offer incredible free ancestry research services and fun, family-friendly experiences that invite personal and family discovery. Elder Allan F. Packer of the Church’s First Quorum of the Seventy presided over the groundbreaking ceremony along with local civic and faith leader guests. The new facility is projected to open in the fall of 2016. 
“Today family history research and telling, sharing, and preserving family memories through stories, photos, and technology are engaging a growing number of individuals of all ages like never before,” said Dennis Brimhall, CEO of FamilySearch International. “Youth want to discover themselves and their family’s history in fun, exciting ways, and adults want to strengthen family connections and leave enduring legacies. The discovery experiences provided by this facility will help do just that,” Brimhall added. 
The 13,500-square-foot St. George facility will be state of the art—designed from the ground up with the entire family in mind. It will deliver personal discovery experiences through interactive technologies and activities that can be continued in the home. Think of it as a dynamic, ever-unfolding “museum of me.” 
Patrons will have access to the most current research resources available online and personal guidance from 150 very knowledgeable staff members. In addition, 4,700 square feet of the facility will offer new, fun, interactive, family-friendly activities that enable patrons of all ages to discover themselves through their personal family stories (see more about the FamilySearch Discovery Center in Salt Lake City). 
The official opening of the new St. George facility is scheduled for late fall of 2016, and admission will be free to the public. 
The current St. George FamilySearch Library is located at 162 North 400 East, Bldg. B Suite 200, and will remain open until construction of the new facility is completed.  
About FamilySearch 
FamilySearch International is the largest genealogy organization in the world. Millions of people use FamilySearch records, resources, and services to learn more about their family history. To help in this great pursuit, FamilySearch and its predecessors have been actively gathering, preserving, and sharing genealogical records worldwide for over 100 years. 
FamilySearch is a nonprofit organization sponsored by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Patrons may access FamilySearch services and resources free online at or through over 4,800 family history centers in 132 countries, including the renowned Family History Library in Salt Lake City. © 2015 by Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved. A service provided by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. 
 The difference between this new facility and those in Orem and Mesa, of course, is that in the case of both Orem and Mesa, the facilities are now closed with no scheduled re-opening. But the announcement does give a clear picture of the future direction of FamilySearch. I also talked this week with the Director of a FamilySearch Center in the Salt Lake Valley and he indicated that his facility was going to be a "test" for a scaled down "Family Discovery Center" concept. Looks like a clear message to me.

No comments:

Post a Comment