What types of records does the Mormon church hold?


Quick Answer

The Mormon church holds significant genealogical records, including an index of the 1880 United States Census; records of immigrants who arrived at Ellis Island between 1882 and 1924; and the Social Security Death Index, which records deaths of individuals since 1962. Many of the physical records are held in the Granite Mountain Records Vault in the Wasatch mountain range in Utah, which is climate controlled and designed to withstand a nuclear explosion.

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Full Answer

The Mormon church maintains extensive genealogical records and encourages church members to conduct family history research because of church doctrines supporting baptizing the dead into the Mormon faith. The church's International Genealogical Index contains primary records, many of which were recorded or gathered by Mormon missionaries. Additionally, the church maintains an Ancestral File, which contains names and genealogical records for over 35 million individuals.

In 2002, the Church of Latter Day Saints began digitizing and indexing the physical records within the Granite Mountain Records Vault. As of 2016, many of these records and databases are available online for professional and amateur genealogical research at websites such as FamilySearch.org, while copies of microfilm from the church's holdings can be accessed at Salt Lake City's Family History Library or at regional Family History Centers.

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