Books for Family History Centers
As Family History Center directors we keep being told by one of the "long time" volunteers that we are supposed to have certain books on our shelves at our Family History Center. Because we are relatively new director/assistant directors we are unsure of what books are necessary to have in the center according to "what we are supposed to have" according to this volunteer. Does anyone know of a book list that is available of what we need to have on our bookshelves in our centers according to directions that we are not familiar with? We would really appreciate your help on this question.
I am just another 'lowly' User/Patron ...
[ And, one who has worked in "Family History Centres" of the Church for a number of Years ... ]
Your "Family History Centre", of the Church, DOES NOT have to have ANY particular, "Book"; or, "Books".
There is NO mandate.
"Family History Centres" of the Church CAN (and, I stress the word, "CAN") acquire whatever/ANY Publication that that particular "Family History Centre" deems necessary and appropriate; but, there is NO 'must' ▬ there is NO "List".
All, "Family History Centres", of the Church, around the World, have different requirements, depending upon their location; and, the particular research that the Users/Patrons of their locality undertake.
There can be no mandate on what Publications the various "Family History Centres", of the Church, around the World, must maintain, apart from anything listed in the "Guidelines" (of the Church) for the "Operations" of a "Family History Centre'.
I hope this helps.
As an aside ...
Question: WHAT particular "Book" (ie. Publication) does this 'long time' Volunteer, suggest?
Thank you so much Brett. We had a feeling that there was no "mandated" list of books that needed to be in the FHC but at one of our director meetings we came up with this concern raised by the volunteer and we wanted to make sure we were listening to her concern. So this will be helpful to share with her when the subject is brought up again. We are going to be moving to another facility, at least by the end of the year, and we actually wanted to dispose of some of the many books that we have that we may not need, keeping some of what we feel are some of the basics. There was no book in particular that she was concerned about, just that she told us that we needed to keep the books that we have. So now that we at least have an answer that you have shared we feel a bit more prepared when we do move we will know what to keep and what to not keep. We just don't have that much room in the new facility for a lot of books which we now have. I will also check the "Guidelines for the Operations of a Family History Center".
Thanks again for getting back so quickly in answering this question.
Here is a great link for information on what to keep and what to get rid of in a Family History Center.
Cleaning out or decluttering a family history center • FamilySearch1
'Yes', sometimes you just have to "Downsize".
It is just a matter of sorting out, what is being utilised; and, what is NOT being 'utilised'.
Just a passing thought ...
Rather than, 'getting rid' of some things, which may be not be necessary ...
Is there any provision (nearby, in a Chapel or Stake Centre) to "Store", that which you cannot take with you?
That way, if such is required, at a later date, such could be 'retrieved' - if and when necessary.
Our local "Family History Centre", has a Cupboard, in the Stake Centre, where we "Store" stuff, that is NOT always being 'utilised' frequently; but, it is still 'on-hand' and available (ie. 'retrieved' - if and when necessary ).
Just something to consider.
When I was a director (in the day) I kept or ordered methodology books and books that peak interest. I also kept any state or local books. I also cataloged them in Dewey decimal order, with labels. Why? Patrons looked for the same numbers at historical libraries and public libraries....a tool in their research strategies.
Samples were a book about the various art and styles of headstones and what they teach you about the dead person, just fascinating for guests. A book on Scottish heraldry was really popular. A key might be the general heritage of the area you serve. A strong collection of books on Danish genealogy tells you about the locals' ancestors.
There is no mandate from FamilySearch to maintain a book collection. You need to keep it accessible, clean, and uncluttered so it looks like an asset, not a dust catching area. And, no, we don't accept family histories, scrapbooks, or photo albums. You might wonder how I learned that.... 🙄3