Some people eat, sleep and chew gum, I do genealogy and write...

Friday, May 1, 2015

Ebooks and Genealogy

True or False: The Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah is digitizing all of their books and presently has over 150,000 books free, online and completely searchable?

True or False: Google is in the process of digitizing all of the books in the world and presently has over 30 million digitized books online, many completely searchable and in the public domain?

True or False: President Obama and the Digital Public Library of America have partnered to provide access to Ebooks across the country?

True or False: The Internet Archive has over 7.9 million free, public domain, completely searchable books online?

True or False: The HathiTrust has over 13 million online digital books with over 5 million in the public domain?

True or False: The online website includes more than 420 million digitized items, including over 19 million books?

True or False: has over 6 million digital items online from around Europe?

True or False: lists over 50 free, online digital books websites?

True or False: Most genealogists are not aware of the number or scope of the online, free digital books available?

This is really a pretty simple to answer test. The answer to all of the questions is "true." If you missed any of the answers to any of the questions, just think what you are missing and where you might want to look.


  1. What is sad is that searching surname books on frequently results in "you do not have permission to view this item." So ... it is like saying LDS users of FS now have free access to partner sites like Ancestry, and then when you go there, you can't access all their records until you pay a fee.

    1. All of the archival or repository websites, included have some type of restriction on some of the records. I do not see the notice you mention very often, but it can come from two possible situations; the book is restricted to one person viewing the book at a time or there is something about the agreement with the publisher or author that limits viewing the book to either registered users, viewing the book on a computer in a Family History Center or only being able to view the book at the Family History Library in Salt Lake. This is not at all unreasonable since the alternative is no access at all. I always look for the book on some other website.

  2. James,
    I thought I had read recent articles that Google has given up their digitizing book project?

    1. I can't find anything that indicates that on the Web. Do you have an article or whatever that says that?