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# Wednesday, March 06, 2013
FamilySearch Family Tree (Finally) Opens to the Public
Posted by Diane

FamilySearch has opened its Family Tree online family tree service for public use. See?



This is what I saw when I went to FamilySearch.org. Until now, Family Tree was open to only members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and select others, as FamilySearch refined the service.

The long-awaited public debut came without a formal announcement from FamilySearch—I read about it on Genea-musings, whose blogger Randy Seaver read about it on the Larry Cragun Family and Genealogy Blog

The goal of FamilySearch Family Tree is to get everyone working on one family tree, sharing information, comparing research and avoiding duplication. Read more about the development of FamilySearch Family Tree on the Ancestry Insider blog.

From that first page, you can either get started using Family Tree, or access training materials.

If you click Get Started (and you don't already have a tree here), you'll see this:



This tree works a little differently from your five-generation ancestor chart. Each box, instead of holding one person's name and vital information, includes a couple. So both of my parents go in the box to the bottom right of my name, and my husband's parents go in the top box.

I clicked Add Husband in my parent's box and was directed to a search page—the goal is to keep me from adding a new person for my dad if someone else has already put him in the tree.



If you instead click the Add Person tab, Family Tree will still look for that person first. If it finds matches, you can either select the right person or add a new person.

Once you add someone to Family Tree, you can't delete the person, but you can delete certain details about the person. Other Family Tree users can change details about any person (and you can change them back), but they're supposed to explain their reasoning and add sources. Changing a person from deceased to living, though, requires a review from FamilySearch admins before it takes effect.

There's a lot to Family Tree, and this isn't even close to an exhaustive review. You can access a basic user guide plus other training materials here, and look for our upcoming Family Tree Magazine article about FamilySearch FamilyTree.

Have you tried FamilySearch Family Tree? What do you think?

Update: Here's an announcement from FamilySearch about the launch of Family Tree.

FamilySearch | Genealogy Industry | Genealogy Web Sites
Wednesday, March 06, 2013 9:26:02 AM (Eastern Standard Time, UTC-05:00)  #  Comments [3]