March 22, 2010

by Dawne

Everyone has done it … you look so forward to that genealogical research trip, whether it is here to the Genealogy Center in Fort Wayne, or to the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, or to the local courthouse and cemeteries in the area where your ancestors lived … that you don’t want to waste a moment of your precious time for mundane things like eating!

But regular breaks, especially for meals or snacks, actually may help your research because they keep your mind fresh and your body fueled.

When you come to Fort Wayne, pick up a flyer of “Downtown Eateries” when you stop at the Ask Desk in the Genealogy Center. The restaurants within walking distance of the Allen County Public Library include fast food (Taco Bell, McDonald’s, Arby’s), ethnic choices (J.K. O’Donnell’s Irish pub, Toscani’s Pizza, Double Dragon) and local favorites (Cindy’s Diner, the Dash-In, the Loaf & Ladle). The library also has a Dunkin’ Donuts restaurant right in the building with more offerings than just doughnuts – such as flatbread sandwiches, egg and cheese wraps, bottled water and juices.

If you choose to bring your lunch when you come to ACPL, tables are available on the library’s plaza for al fresco dining in good weather. Patrons may not eat or drink in the Genealogy Center, nor have food or drinks visible, but you may pack lunch and snacks in a closed bag or cooler and take them to other areas of the building to eat.

In Salt Lake City, pick up a guest pass at the Information desk in the lobby of the Family History Library for a generous meal at a low price at the LDS church office building cafeteria. In addition, the Family History Library has a lunch room with vending machines and a microwave for those who would rather eat in. J.B.’s family-style restaurant is right next door and there are other nearby choices.

Librarians and courthouse employees in the towns where your ancestor lived probably will have suggestions of favorite places to dine in their local areas.

Do take breaks to clear your head and don’t skip meals when you embark on those research trips this spring. No one wants to get home and discover a research blunder that was the result of the “low blood sugar blues!”

Yes, we’re open Presidents Day

February 10, 2010

If you don’t have school, don’t have to go to work, and don’t have to worry about picking up the mail on Monday February 15, remember that the Genealogy Center is open our regular 9A to 9P for your research pleasure, as is the whole ACPL system. If you live some distance, take advantage of our weekend hours (Saturday 9A to 6P and Sunday 12N to 5P) to make it a 3-day trip!

Read All About It!

January 5, 2010

On Sunday, January 3, 2010, Genealogy Center Manager Curt Witcher spoke at the Allen County Historical Museum about how the Allen County Public Library’s Genealogy Collection became a top Fort Wayne tourist attraction. In an article in Monday’s Journal Gazette describing the event, he is quoted discussing the present and future of digitizing our extensive holdings, and the knowledge and service attitude of the Center’s staff which continues to draw people from Oregon, Florida and, yes, Utah every year. Take a minute to peruse the article and keep up with the Center’s, and Genealogy’s, future.


January 2, 2010

The Genealogy Center can be found on Facebook. You can become a fan of the Genealogy Center by searching for “Genealogy
Center” within Facebook pages. It’s another great way to learn new information about the Center and connect with other researchers.

Don’t Forget to Bring….

December 13, 2009

Here are a few thoughts on what you might want to bring with you on a visit to the Genealogy Center.

• You definitely will wish to have copies of your research notes, lists of questions to answer, and sources to check. Carrying your notebook computer is wonderful, but a list that you can carry around with you is nice, too. Be prepared by going over your material again to re-familiarize yourself with the background and challenges, and take a few minutes to search our book and microtext catalogs so you can hit the ground running.
• Bring a flash- (jump- or thumb-) drive. You can copy images of microfilm or download material from our computers. However, make sure that there are no programs already on the drive, as the ACPL system will not accept it if there are .exe files.
• Bring a notebook or folder in which to organize what you find. Make sure to cite the author, title, etc., when you make notes and/or copies.
• Don’t forget your favorite pens or pencils. Although we have golf pencils you may borrow, you’ll probably feel more comfortable using your own than the 3-inch versions.
• Bring money, preferably in $1 bills. Our photocopiers (ten cents per copy) take coins, and $1 and $5 bills, but the Pay-4-Print system to print from the computers (five cents per copy) will take only $1 bills.
Of course, these are just basics. There might be other items to being as well, such as a lock for your notebook computer, but be sure to bring your well-rested brain, as that’s always your best research tool!

Holiday Hours

December 11, 2009

If you plan to hop in the car, plane, or train and visit the Genealogy Center during the next few weeks, please be aware of a change in our hours the week of December 24 – January 1.

Change in hours:
December 24 Closed
December 25 Closed
December 31 9:00AM-5:00PM
January 1 Closed


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