The Center for Family History and Genealogy at Brigham Young University is an academic research center associated with the family history B.A. program. Currently, 75 students work in the center on various projects. All student research is made available online, providing quality resource materials for genealogists worldwide.
One of our projects is the Immigrant Ancestors Project (IAP) which has been on-going for over 15 years. One of the most difficult issues in genealogical research is to discover the immigrant’s hometown to continue research in an earlier country of residence. To locate the birthplaces of immigrants, which are generally missing on the records in arrival countries, IAP identifies and indexes emigration records from European home countries. These records are rich in genealogical information, but they are largely untouched because most are accessible only by visiting archives containing the records. They are rarely indexed or microfilmed. Record types acquired for IAP include passports, passport applications, ship lists, boarding permissions, fugitive records, and more. The project is currently indexing records in seven countries: England, Germany, Spain, Italy, France, Portugal, and The Netherlands. The IAP data is available online to anyone researching immigrants. The searchable database now totals over 875,000 names.
In addition to data made available to the public, the Center employs students who are giving back to our country. Six students are currently assisting the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency by identifying living next-of-kin and potential DNA donors for missing soldiers back to World War II. The DNA is used to identify the remains of these solders, which continue to be recovered and returned to their families. We appreciate this opportunity and privilege.
During the NGS Conference in Grand Rapids, the center is sponsoring Session T253, “Making Good Use of Direct and Indirect Evidence,” on Thursday, 04 May 2018, at 4:00 p.m. Come visit our booth (#319) to learn more about our projects and meet some of the up and coming genealogists of the next generation!