News Release

New 'Family Tree' Website Makes Finding Your Roots Even Easier

Seasoned genealogists as well as novices are now able to access Family Tree, a long-awaited enhancement to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ website. 

The site is accessible free of charge by visiting

The new website enables individuals “to start building their family tree entirely online, starting with themselves and then expanding to past generations,” said Paul M. Nauta, a spokesperson for FamilySearch.

A key feature of Family Tree is the ability to collaborate with relatives across cyberspace in researching and documenting one’s ancestry.

“You can discover what others may have already found about your family history,” Mr Nauta said.

In the context of an online pedigree chart, users can attach photos and links to sources. An easy “grab-and-pull” feature allows users to move up and down the tree, zoom in to focus on a particular ancestor, and zoom out to get a multigenerational perspective.

“The goal behind FamilyTree is to create what we would call the best-sourced genealogy in the world,” Tara L. Bergeson of FamilySearch told journalists recently. “The idea is to get people to interact with one another so that supporting documentation can find the correct ancestor.”

Diane Loosle, Director of Program Management at FamilySearch, Michelle Patient, President of the New Zealand Society of Genealogists, and Michael Higgins, the Latter-day Saints’ Pacific Area Family History Support Manager, will be meeting with genealogy enthusiasts across New Zealand in August to explain the new features available on Family Tree.

Seminars will be held in Te Puke (6 August), Taupo (7 August), Palmerston North (8 August), Christchurch (10 August), Dunedin (12 August) and Alexandra (13 August).

For more information about these meetings contact Michael Higgins at

FamilySearch is the largest genealogical organization in the world. The non-profit and volunteer-driven organization is sponsored by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. has over three billion searchable records in 1,245 online collections. The site has over one million users and receives around 10 million hits, on average, each day.

Over 200 filming teams across the globe, many being volunteers, digitize paper records of births, deaths, marriages and other events, working closely with governments, churches and other organizations. 

These digitized records are then indexed and posted on FamilySearch so people throughout the world can research their family trees.




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