This week in Church history


The establishment of a youth area in the Genealogical Library of the Church was highlighted in the Nov. 17, 1973, Church News. At that time, the library was located in the west wing of the newly opened Church Office Building. (It has since moved to its own building on West Temple, across the street from Temple Square.)

Sue Hill, a 20-year-old graduate of BYU, was in charge of the area, which was opened "to give young people from 12 to 25 a chance to get acquainted with genealogy," the article stated.

It continued, "The youth area is more, or less, an orientation area. Here, the young people feel comfortable in asking questions, and after they are on their own, if they feel more comfortable asking questions of Sister Hill, they are welcome to go back for help or to ask questions at any time."

The article went on to emphasize that all the facilities and assistance in the library were available to youth.

Group tours were offered for the young people and the article reported that student groups from Idaho State University, BYU, Weber State University and the University of Utah had visited.

"Our tour sizes vary from seven to 10 people, but we can handle groups up to 80," Sister Hill was quoted as saying.

Several MIA groups had also planned an activity around the youth area, taking advantage of the orientation and the chance to do work on individual family histories.

Sister Hill concluded, "With our youth center, we know we will get many young people excited about genealogy because it is tremendously exciting, and once a person knows what to do in the library and archives, it's a lifelong habit."

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