SALT LAKE CITY — In celebration of Black History Month, the Family History Library of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints will conduct a free African-American Family History Open House on Saturday, 22 February, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Research specialists and staff will be on hand to provide free orientations and personal assistance with family history research.

“The purpose of the open house is to acquaint African-Americans with the tremendous resources available at the library to assist them with their family history research and preservation,” said Glade I. Nelson, director of the Family History Library. “It’s a wonderful opportunity for people who have always wanted to explore their roots but didn’t know how to start or where to search.”

Don Harwell, first counselor in the presidency of Genesis, a organization for Black members of the Church, said, “I was reluctant to do research at the Family History Library because I thought it would be difficult, but within a half hour I had found my father.”

The following classes will be be taught in the morning beginning at 9 a.m. and repeated again in the afternoon beginning at 1 p.m.

1. How Do I Start My Family History
2. Unlocking Your Family History with the U.S. Census
3. Beyond the Basics: Resources for African-American

All classes and assistance are free, but interested parties are encouraged to pre-register by calling 801-240-2358. For a complete schedule of classes, contact the Library Public Affairs Office at 240-3963 or log onto Click on the “Library” tab, then “Education.” The Family History Library is located at 35 North West Temple Street in downtown Salt Lake City.

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