Saturday, September 20, 2014

Family History Library, Here I Come!

Actually, the title should probably be "Ready or not, here I come." 

I am heading to Salt Lake City early in the morning for 5 days of unencumbered research at the Family History Library.

I've been there many times before.
But this is the first time I've gone without a clear research plan and extensive preparation.
I just haven't had the time and don't have access to my file cabinet and boxes of materials on my primary families.
But since I desperately need a break from this summer's never-ending medical maladies, I'm going to SLC anyway.

In the early days--1980s and early 1990s--I would do flight "stopovers" in SLC on my way home from business trips. I'd use the nights of those business trips to prep for my 24 hours (or less) in SLC and be at the Family History Library every nanosecond they were open during my stay. In the olden days, that was 7:00 AM until 10:00 PM, I believe. I would not leave the building for anything, grabbing snacks from the vending machines and maybe two potty breaks in 15 hours. Ah, the good old days.

Lately I've been managing to get to SLC about once a year, though usually not for a full week. Often I have my husband in tow, which is not conducive to doing serious research. But I'm certainly not as obsessive-compulsive about spending every available waking moment in the library. I actually go out for lunch and dinner. Once I even went to a concert after dinner instead of returning to the library. What a shocking experience!

I'm hoping that the family histories are back on the shelves by now. They weren't there the last three times I checked. Very frustrating. Most aren't available on microfilm or in any other form. Why the "powers that be" felt they needed to sweep the shelves of half of the family histories and spirit them off to unknown locations for multiple years is beyond me. I was told they were being prepared for digitization, but they hadn't gotten permission to digitize them yet. So why remove them from the shelves? Very strange for a library that is usually very customer friendly.

Anyway, wish me luck with whichever family I end up researching. I'll let you know of any genealogical breakthroughs in a week or so.

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