FamilySearch updated the historical records search page to make searching for your ancestors easier. Come check out what’s new on the records search page!
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Family Search used to be my go-to genealogy research site. Now it is not. 1. For example, like this page, how do I go from here directly to a search page? 2. FS does not use "start new search". Unable to determine what remnants of previous searches remain in the background. I often get -0- hits on a name until I leave & start with a fresh screen. Using 'start new search' would be most helpful. 3. When one finds a record they want to review, must download that record in order to read it. Record information view far too small to read without downloading. 4. When one downloads a record, must then go to downloads folder to bring up the file. Too many steps. Ancestry has the same small & illegible records problem, but downloads appear directly on the screen allowing you to view the file without the extra step of going to your downloads folder. (then having to take the step of deleting the download when it is not what you are looking for) 5. Sorely miss the availability of the 'film strip'. Once one figures out the organization of the film, one can move around the screen searching with relative ease. 6. And my forever complaint about searching in general, why or why do hits in the 17th century give me SSDI hits--
What I would like to see is a feature where one could remove certain terms from a search. Example I am searching for name 'John Hollow' but I get many, many hits for a 'Abraham Hollow' with John & other Hollows interspersed among them. I would like to remove every hit with the name 'Abraham' in order to get to a more manageable set of hits.
Thank you for listening. Michelle Lyons, Kent WA
Still unable to scroll down the search results. I have put in the same name and date dozens of time and only get same reply. My ancestor's info is out there but your new format keeps it hidden. You cannot begin to imagine my frustration with your new format. Why does people believe change is really necessary? Sometimes the old ways work best.
Thank you for this guide and hints. As a complete beginner I have found it very helpful. And I was successful in finding information on my great grandfather.
I find this 'new' FamilySearch method of searching hopeless. I now barely come here as I go away empty handed. I can no longer even find the records I have previously been able to immediately go to, or those I have edited in the past. The previous search results screen with the LHS panel of your search terms that you could refine to further tailor results was brilliant, now that's gone I find the Preferences tab doesn't work for me, and all the filtering options are too singular - you can't mix and match enough any more.
I'm afraid FamilySearch has lost my vote as having a reasonable search engine now.
I've been doing genealogy research for 45 years, and have used FamilySearch since its inception. I am a Family History Director and have taught many Family History classes in addition to being a high school teacher. This new way of searching for records is exasperating. I used to have a great deal of success using the old search screen. I have been trying for days to get the new record search find a marriage record that I have so I can attach it to my tree and also so I can practice using the new search process. I have all the pertinent information, but the record hasn't appeared in the list after numerous tries. I finally went to the card catalog and was able to find it there.
Sadly, I cannot recommend this new record search process to our patrons. I will be recommending they go to Ancestry and use Record Seek to transfer the indexed information to their FamilySearch tree. They will have to download the image, when available on Ancestry, and then upload it to their source entry in FamilySearch.
Change is not always better. Please reconsider going back to the previous search. I am a webmaster and I would never expect site visitors to learn so many steps to find a record, especially when the previous search was so much easier and more productive.
Ditto most of these comments. Not happy with the 'New Improved Familysearch.' IT USED to be my go-to research. Like others say I know certain records are here; yet I can't even find them 'knowing' the information. Too, as 'New Search' leaves remnants of my prior search -- and wants to 'help' me. Please either fix or revert back.
Your site was great before you "improved" it.
Now is extremely upsetting and really of very little or no help to genealogists, new OR with 45-50 years experience.
Seriously, I hesitate to comment because most organizations do not care what the people want or need ..so it does no good to comment.
The "improvements" to your site are forcing so many people to give up and most will never bother with genealogy again.
I don't believe you are intentionally discouraging people but that is exactly what is happening and it's a shame
Searching was far easier before and no need for "improvement"
The records we have found in the past do not show up with your new system. It's just no longer useful, I'm sorry to say
If you've read this far, I thank you
terrible bring back the old system
This as a search help, is un helpful. When I first put in search parameters, I got results. But when I click on the record icon or the name of the ancestor, I get a blank page. When I go back to re-search the same person, I get a blank page.
I agree with your veteran researchers that this program is no longer working and am highly frustrated with this and other "Search" areas. They are user UNfriendly. The Wiki area is complicated and I find nothing ever. It always comes up as 0 results no matter how much information I enter.
1980 thru 1990 i went to a LDS research library that taught e how to document and research 9 generations of my family. now i am back looking via new records and new search engines. How do I transfer PAF to Family Search & Ancestry WITH all the foot notes and documents attached? TY Sheila D. (was Parent) James.
Just using the FS site has been very confusing for me. Site usage would be helped immensely by a new top-level menu on the home page. Next best would be a detailed site map. Thank you for your efforts in keeping this website free to all users.
I feel the same way about Family Search the way it is set up now as all those who have commented on how difficult it is to get around. Loved the old program. P. Miller, Nashville, TN
I have used and loved Family Search in getting started in genealogy. The comments I read below have made me very apprehensive about using it now. I am one of those people that after a certain amount of frustration, say "Forget it." and go do something else. I hope you have made the changes people have requested below to make the program easy to use.
I am so glad to realize I am not the idiot. I have used FamilySearch for many years, but the "new improved" version is awful. I had stopped doing any research when I found the new version was so difficult to use, but decided to give it another try.
I agree with all of the comments below. It is not worth wasting time trying to use the new version until massive changes are made.
Reload the old version and go back to the drawing board and fix the new version. Definitely needed more testing before it was released.
I agree with most comments, new improved version is shiny and new, but not an improvement. Much too difficult. When I find a search of interest, I seem to be frozen and not able to move around like I use to to identify possible relationships.
Hope all the comments are taken under serious consideration and agree that the old version needs to be restored as soon as possible.
Over the past several days the filter feature has changed. What parameter you were filtering your results by (for ex: Rhode Island) used to be above the list of available filters. Sometimes when a filter does not provide the desired results it is necessary to change them. But, now the parameters filtering by is hidden. They appear on the screen for mere seconds after applying the filter. You have to hit the back button twice to go back to unfiltered results and and start all over again. This is most frustrating. Over the past several months FS attempts to improve the search and Find Similar People tools. Instead the tools are now much much worse.
I'm going back to using Ancestry, as much as I don't want to, to do my research and pray that I can get the information I need transferred to FamilySearch in order to get my ancestors temple ordinances done.
I agree with 99% of the comments listed here. I remember when "beta" changes were done before "final" product was put forth. I understand that FamilySearch is done as a not-for-profit piece of software and has been a great boon to those who have not the resources to pay a tidy sum each year for other programs. However NONE of these other ones have the capability of giving me the end product of which I need, and that is producing the Temple Ordinance Cards.
If Ancestry were allowed to do this, then I would be willing to stay with them; if, due to pricing, I could spread that yearly cost among five friends
I find the new program exhausting
even submitting records for ordinance work difficult
100% agree with the previous comments. I HATE this new version. It's exhausting, time consuming and confusing! When I started out researching my family history FamilySearch was my "go to" resource. Not any more! Bring back the old version and give us the choice to use it if we prefer.
add the ability to search other keywords
I have an account at Family search but I am not a member of the church. When I search the database I find nothing although a friend of mine, who is a member of the church, finds several books of records. Does FS app allows church members to find recorda that are not allowed to commom people at the app? Is it possible to ask FS special allowance to search the same recorda we need to find our ancestrals? Thanks
All record collections are available to everyone. You may need to be at a FamilySearch center or a local library that is a FamilySearch affiliate to see the collections.