HSP, FamilySearch Collaborate: Microfilm

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HSP, FamilySearch Collaborate: Microfilm

The Historical Society of Pennsylvania (HSP) is proud to announce its new status as a FamilySearch Affiliate Library.

As a FamilySearch Affiliate Library, researchers are able to request microfilm from FamilySearch’s collections (for a fee) and view it in HSP’s Greenfield Microfilm Room at no additional cost.

Here’s how the process works:

  • Anyone in the world may order microfilm from FamilySearch’s collections via their website and designate HSP as the Affiliate Library in which to view it.
  • The researcher pays a loan fee to FamilySearch upon ordering and receives an order confirmation.
  • HSP also receives a notification when the microfilm order has been placed and when it has shipped.
  • After HSP receives the film, an email is sent (from FamilySearch) to the researcher, notifying them that the film is ready to be viewed at HSP.
  • To view the film at HSP, the researcher will be asked to complete a registration form as per regular library policy.
  • HSP’s Visitor Services Manager will explain to researchers that the Affiliate Library badge only allows them to use the FamilySearch microfilm in the Greenfield Room. These researchers will not have other Library privileges (such as using other film in the Greenfield Room or using the Reading Room, Pennsylvania Room or Family History Room, or from requesting other items from HSP’s collections). If the non-member researcher would like to receive full Library services, they may pay the $8 daily admission fee or sign up for an HSP membership.
  • HSP’s library staff will then retrieve the microfilm for the researcher and demonstrate how to use the microfilm readers.
  • Once finished with the FamilySearch microfilm, the researcher will return it to the Reference Desk. Researchers: please be sure to let the library staff at the Reference Desk know if you are completely finished with the microfilm (so it can be returned to FamilySearch), or whether you will be returning to HSP to view the film on further occasions.

To request microfilm from FamilySearch, researchers will need to create a free FamilySearch account.

To begin, please visit familysearch.org and create a free account (highlighted in red below).

Once this has been completed, click here or visit familysearch.org/films to begin browsing through their microfilm collection. 

Search by name, title, subject, location, and other keywords to determine if microfilm or microfiche records exist for your research query.

Note: Before ordering any film, check to make sure the Family History Library Catalog does not have a digital copy online.

Once records of interest have been located, the next step is to identify the film/fiche number to complete the request. To obtain the film/fiche number, see the Film Notes section in the record description (located towards the bottom of the record).

Note: Before ordering microfilms or microfiche, please check the Notes field. Any restrictions on the use of the item will be mentioned there.

After the film/fiche numbers have been determined, click here or visit https://familysearch.org/films/ to complete the process.

Select the loan type, enter the film/fiche number, and click Search. Repeat this step for additional items.

When you are ready to submit your loan order, click the shopping cart in the upper right portion of the screen. You will then have a chance to review and confirm your order. After the order has been submitted, all films will be delivered to HSP.