Document ID: 115003Print this document
Procedure for requesting data from historical records for academic purposes
Instructions for Area Support

Phone Calls: Send the messaging shown in the Answer section


1.     Respond to patron

o   Let patron know that their request has been sent to Jake Gehring who will be processing their request and who will be their future contact person.

2.     Email Jake Gehring the following info:

o   Case Number:

o   Contact Name:

o   Contact Email:

o   Contact Phone:

o   Notes: Copy the patron request into the email

3.     Close Case:   CATEGORY 1 = Research Assistance: CATEGORY 2 = Historical Records - Data Request;  RESOLUTION = Knowledge Base.
Summary Notes:  KD 115003 - email sent to Jake Gehring.

Symptoms (Problems)
  • A graduate student working on a thesis requests specific data

  • An academic institution asks for data for a research project

  • A research institution wishes to use data for analysis on various projects

  • An author requires data to prove certain hypothesis

Answer (Resolution)

FamilySearch will share certain genealogical data sets with academic institutions via a restricted use license in order to foment and encourage research in areas such as historical demography, geography, statistics, history, genetics, and computer science.



Research requests may or may not be granted depending on the proposed use of the data, the licensability of the content in question, and the internal resources required to provide the data.


The research use license is rather strict and includes clauses that:

  • restrict distribution or publication of the data to any third party;

  • allow use of the data solely for the purpose of the stated research;

  • require researchers to provide a copy of all research results to FamilySearch;

  • specify that researchers will destroy any copies of the data when researcher has ended.

Contact Information:

Jake Gehring

Director, Data Operations

FamilySearch International

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