'Angel' is the library

Since my husband's father, H.B. Gukeisen, had joined the Church in 1953 and become involved in family history and temple work for his kindred dead, he had wanted to find where his ancestors came from in Germany, but was never able to.

As my husband, Darwin, following his dad's example, became more and more involved in genealogy, he also wanted to find his ancestors' birth place.Darwin's parents hired a research firm to help. They found some U.S. census records of related Gukeisens and also some areas of Germany to check for records, but we couldn't tell where to start.

One day in the Family History Library in Salt lake City, Darwin felt he was at a "dead-end" and, not knowing what else to do, silently prayed for help. About the same time, a patron of the library who was headed for the elevator to leave for the day, turned around and came back to him. With her sweet German accent, she asked him what the problem was. He showed her our name, Gukeisen, and told her he was looking for this name in Germany. After a moment she told him: "This is wrong. This is not good German. It's not spelled right."

She went on to say that in Germany the name would be Guckeisen, spelled with a c. From that start Darwin found some Guckeisen listings in the International Genealogical Index which led him to a microfilm of Brotdorf, Merzig, Germany. I was privileged to be with him the day he found his great-grandfather's birth record.

Because of the help given by this sister, Kathie Lindner, Darwin was able to find hundreds of names of ancestors from the Brotdorf area using two microfilms in the Family History Library. He unexpectedly found out the extent of her generosity when he went to a stake meeting for family history consultants and related the story of finding his ancestors. Before he could give the name of our "angel," others there at the meeting who had benefited from her help said, "Oh yes, that's Kathie!"

Over the years, Sister Lindner, now a member of the Salt Lake 27th Ward, Salt Lake Emigration Stake, has helped hundreds in the Family History Library to get started, to figure out tough research problems, or just to keep going. This she has done when she has been troubled with her own problems. Yet she finds joy in helping others freely and has truly become an answer to the prayers of many, our angel in the library.

Subscribe for free and get daily or weekly updates straight to your inbox
The three things you need to know everyday
Highlights from the last week to keep you informed