FamilySearch Search Hints

FamilySearch has probably the best search capability of any of the websites where you might find pedigrees.

The collection has expanded well beyond family trees. So, when you are at the site, you should look for other records as well.

Your best bet is to search using as much information as you have. If you get too few responses this way, first remove the mother's last name. Her name is the one most likely to be entered incorrectly in a family tree. the father's name of the ancestor. If you still get too few responses, omit the spouse's name and use only the father's name with the ancestor's name.

How to Search FamilySearch for Family Trees

  • Best Way to Search: Go to Active Searches for easier searching. At the Active Searches page, you need only to enter your ancestor data once to search all the websites. Active Searches is a free service that creates the optimal searches for your ancestor data.
  • Manually search FamilySearch yourself. This will open a new window so you can refer back to the search hints above.

FamilySearch Website Capabilities

See the definition of terms for any questions on the meaning of the entries.

x free searches
x free viewing of pedigrees
  paid viewing
  free downloads of pedigrees
  paid downloads
x contact information for submitter (not in all cases)
  ability to see all the names submitted by a particular researcher
  ability to restrict searches to updates since a specific time
x searches with spouse's name
x searches with parent's names
x searches by place of birth
x searches by place of marriage
x searches by place of death
x searches by country
x searches by state, province, or political subdivision
x searches by date
x ability to specify date ranges for searching
x searches by exact spelling of name
x searches by metaphone
  searches by soundex
  ability to automatically find possible matches in your ancestry