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Have you tried Indexing at  It’s a great experience.  A way to learn where the information comes from, improve your skills reading handwriting, learn history of different parts of the world, plus you’re giving back to the family history community.  A win win for everyone.

There are several great projects available right now.

Local to the Chicago area, you can index Chicago Catholic Church records and Cook Death Certificates, 1959-1994.

Have roots in the boot?  Calling all Italians.  Family Search International collaborated with the National Archives of Italy to digitally preserve Italian vital records.  Index Italian records from 115 million images to add more than 500 million names.

Family Search has declared 2014 the “Year of the Obituary.”  Contribute to their goal to index 100 million names from obituaries, the ‘treasure trove” of valuable genealogical information.


Take a test drive, find a project that’s right for you, and get started!





to see images on

Mon Aug 12, 2013 10:33 am (PDT).  Posted by: “Christine Bell”

I hope you have noticed that there are new records being added to on almost a daily basis.  In order to get some on these records online, Family Search has had to agree to restrict access to some of them.  These restrictions are the requirement of the record owners.  Family Search’s goal is to have the records available to the public.  Many records still require no sign-in to view them.  Some records when an attempt to view them is made, display the message: Sign in to see free image  A Family Search account which is free, is all you need to sign in to see these records.  You will also need a Family Search account to order films.  Other records display the message: This image is view-able: To signed-in members of supporting organizations which means viewing these records requires a LDS account.  However, some records that require a LDS account, can be viewed from a family history center computer without signing-in.
There are so many records on FamilySearch.  org and more added almost daily, I am not going to try to list which records are available without signing-in if you are using a family history center computer.  If you would like to verify whether a restricted viewing records collection is available from a computer in our family history center, please feel free to email me at   Please email me rather than calling the center, as it usually takes a while to get an answer about a specific records collection.  I will be happy to verify whether or not a specific record is view-able from our computers to keep patrons from making a needless trip to the center.

When you visit the Naperville Family History Center, please keep in mind that staff members represent Family Search and are therefore expected to honor the contracts regarding record collections that Family Search has with the record owners.  It would be a contract violation for a staff member to use their LDS account to get you access to the records, so please don’t ask.  I do use my prerogative as center director to occasionally use my LDS account to give patrons access to records but that is limited to times when the images are not view-able due to temporary computer malfunction.

When Family Search films records, the owner of the records gets a copy of the films or digital images of the records.  If your viewing of some record collection is blocked, contact the owner of the records and inquire about gaining access to them.

I hope this explanation is helpful, Christine

October is National Family History Month

It’s a great time to get started with one of these ideas.

Or make a plan for the coming year to start them all.

1)      Write and share a story about one of your ancestors.

2)      Plan a research trip.

3)      Record the history of your family heirlooms, what’s their origin, how did you get them.

4)      Create a family health history.

5)      Search collateral lines, focus on an ancestor’s siblings for additional records that benefit your research.

6)      Interview a family member.

7)      Try a new app for your mobile device and home computer like Dropbox or Evernote.

8)      Have your DNA tested.

9)      Create a migration map, show where your ancestors lived by creating your own Google map.

10)  Send copies of your family tree to your siblings, nieces/nephews, cousins, etc.

11)  Make connections by starting a family a blog or Facebook group.

12)  Become a Family Search indexer.

13)  Cook up some family recipes with stories that go with them; start a family cookbook.

14)  Visit a new repository or cemetery.

15)  Learn something new – find a program or conference to attend.

16)  Use timelines to analyze your findings.

17)  Don’t forget to write stories about your life.


Join DuPage County (IL) Genealogical Society in indexing the 1940 U.S. Federal Census!

Step 1: Go to:

Step 2: Click GET STARTED from the menu at the top.

Step 3: Download and install the Indexing Software

Step 4: Register for a FamilySearch account, if you don’t already have one.

Step 5: Select Another group, then select DuPage County (IL) Genealogical Society from the dropdown list.

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This is a guest post by DCGS President Nancy Thomas

I arrived yesterday, January 25, after a very early morning flight out of Chicago. The hotel has a free shuttle van that picked me up at the airport. My room was ready. I unpacked, ate a quick lunch in the hotel’s restaurant, and set off to find the group at the library. There’s an exit out the back of the hotel that leads to an alley that is a shortcut to the library. Very handy. However, after looking for the group on several floors with no luck–I didn’t realize that the seven other members of the group would be scattered around doing there own research (and I had no idea what any of them looked like!)–I decided to get on with my own research and try to meet up with the group later. Later turned out to be 9:00 p.m.

I started out by ordering some microfilms that were listed in the FamilySearch online catalog as located in the vault which is off site. In a few days, I will look in the film drawers to see if they are there yet. I did not accomplish much that first day on my own, but had a good consultation session with Nancy Ellen Carlberg, the professional genealogist with the group, this morning. She had looked over several Family Group Sheets that I had sent to her before the trip. She was able to suggest resources and orient me to where things were located on the various floors of the library. This individual attention was what I needed to really get started.

After getting passes from the lobby desk, the group went to lunch together at the LDS Church Cafeteria. This is located across the street in the LDS Office Building, about a 4 minute walk through beautiful Temple Square. This is an amazing cafeteria that is actually for employees of the LDS Church, but patrons using the LDS library are also welcome. It has a wide variety of food to eat, but the best thing are the prices! They are subsidized; for example, I had the special grilled sandwich of the day and a cookie for $3.28! Something I have noticed both at the library and the cafeteria is that all the men wear suits, white dress shirts, and ties. The women wear either skirts or dresses. They look and act very professional, and are friendly and helpful as well. It is very impressive.

I am preparing tonight for another day of research tomorrow. How great is this!

Nancy Thomas

President, DCGS


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1940 census

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