The Family History Library in Salt Lake City, which has provided Local History Centers and Affiliate Libraries with thousands of reels of microfilmed records for genealogist’s access, is about to discontinue its lending program.
The last day to order LDS microfilm has been extended to September 7, 2017.
On September 8, 2017, microfilm lending will cease. Family history centers and affiliate libraries, including the Ellis Library & Reference Center of the Monroe County Library System, will be allowed to keep all microfilm already arrived for researchers. For a listing of films available, please contact the Reference Department at the Ellis Library & Reference Center.
According to the Family History Library’s website, much of the microfilm already in their vault has been digitized and is posted online, including all of the films that have been borrowed in the last 5 years. Scanning of the remaining microfilm is occurring at a rate of 1,000 films per day and will be completed by 2020. All new records are being digitized using digital camera equipment. These records are also being loaded to the FamilySearch website as collections are completed.
Diane Loosle, Director of the Patron Services Division at FamilySearch, was recently interviewed on a Genealogy Gems podcast. She said that microfilm being digitized is being published on the FamilySearch.org website, although the records will not be found “…through the Historical Records part of FamilySearch under Search Records. They’re just through the catalog, so there’s a much larger collection available through the catalog than what you see in the Historical Records section.”
To find these records, go to the catalog and look up the microfilm needed. If there is a camera icon to the right side of the catalog record, click on it and the scanned images from that film will load.
For more information, check out the article Family History Microfilm Discontinuation from the Family History Library’s website, or the Podcast Special Episode: The End of FamilySearch Microfilm Lending Program from Lisa Louise Cooke’s Genealogy Gems website. Both the podcast and its transcription is available.