Fort Myers-Lee County Public Library
Family Search Library Affiliate
Family Search Microfilm/Fiche Rental Program
Frequently Asked Questions
February 17, 2012
The Fort Myers-Lee County Library has been granted full status as a Family Search Affiliate Library. This privilege allows us to offer our genealogy patrons access to the microfilmed holdings of the Family History Library in Salt Lake City which houses the largest genealogical library in the world. Through the FamilySearch Affiliate Libraries, they make many of their holdings available in microform to genealogy researchers on a loan basis, for a small processing fee. Patrons will be able to access most genealogical materials in microfilm or fiche formats. However, there are some limitations which we must abide by in terms of access:
1. We are unable to borrow any materials in print format
2. Space limitations prevent us from retaining microfilms indefinitely as was the case previously with Family History Centers operating in Naples, Fort Myers, and Port Charlotte.
3. That decision may be revisited upon completion of our new building scheduled for late summer of 2013.
We have compiled this guide to help answer the most common questions about procedures related to ordering materials for research. As of August 24, 2011, Family Search implemented the policy that patrons are responsible for ordering all microform materials online. They may initiate the orders from any location where there is an Internet connection. However, they must select one of the libraries or Family History Centers listed on the drop down menu. The Fort Myers-Lee County Library is the designated library affiliate for Lee and Collier Counties.
A researcher’s first step is to visit the Family History Library Catalog (available at http://www.FamilySearch.org) to select the microform they wish to order. The film ordering website is located at https://www.familysearch.org/films. There, individuals must create a personal account and select the preferred Affiliate Library or Family History Center where the films they order will be sent. They must make payment using a credit or debit card or PayPal.
Genealogy researchers are encouraged to download the User’s Guide available at https://www.familysearch.org/films as it provides step-by-step guidelines for placing an order. For those wishing help in selecting and ordering films, genealogy assistance will continue to be available at the Fort Myers-Lee County Public Library by calling 479-4636 for an appointment. Feel free to contact us with any additional questions or comments.
Frequently Asked Questions
The LDS Church has the largest genealogical library in the world. Through the Family History Centers and FamilySearch Affiliate Libraries, they make many of their holdings available in microform to genealogy researchers on a loan basis, for a small processing fee.
Do I need to be a member of the LDS Church to order microform?
No. The LDS Church makes their library materials and online databases available to everyone, regardless of religious affiliation.
Can I order microform by email or phone?
No. According to the new FamilySearch guidelines, you must personally place your order online, and prepay using a credit or debit card or Pay Pal. Visit www.FamilySearch.org/films to register and place an order. Patrons are strongly encouraged to read the Microfilm Use Agreement.
Can I order the microforms at a library?
Patrons can order microforms using library computers, following the instructions in #2 above.
Will someone be available to help me with microform orders?
A genealogy volunteer at the Fort Myers-Lee County Public Library is available by appointment to help patrons with ordering, but patrons must place their own online orders.
Can the microform be sent to another library?
When patrons first register on the Family Search site, they must select a Family History Center or Library Affiliate where they want their order delivered.
What is the cost to rent microfilm and microfiche?
Due to the increase in the price of raw microfilm stock and the decreasing availability of this product on the market, and higher costs to ship microfilm, it has become necessary for FamilySearch to increase the price of film loans in family history centers. As of 15 February 2012 the following prices will be in effect for film loans in the United States and Canada:
Short-term film loan 7.50
Short-term film loan renewal 7.50
Extended film loan 18.75
Microfiche loan 4.75 (this price has not increased)
How do I pay for an order?
Under the new FamilySearch Online Ordering guidelines, payment must be made by credit or debit card or Pay Pal.
Do I have to pay when I place the order?
Yes. Payment must be made online before the order can be processed.
Do I need a Lee County library card to order microforms?
After I order the microform, how long will it be before I receive it?
It may take an average of 2-3 weeks to receive microform materials after they are ordered.
How will I know when the microform is available for me to use?
FamilySearch will notify you by email when the microform material is available at the designated Library Affiliate or Family History Center.
Where do I pick up the microform?
Microform materials will be delivered to the Library Affiliate or Family History Center that you selected at the time the order was placed.
How long can I keep microform(s)?
Orders will be held for your use at the Fort Myers-Lee County Public Library Reference Desk for approximately 60 days before microfilm must be either returned or renewed. Microfiche is loaned for an indefinite period and will be retained by the Fort Myers-Lee County Public Library.
What if I’m not finished with the film by the date it’s due?
Microfilm on Short-Term Loan may be renewed up to two times at a cost of $5.50 per renewal.
What if I order the wrong microform?
While we are happy to assist, you are ultimately responsible for the selection of microform(s) ordered. Under FamilySearch Online Ordering guidelines, the rental fee will not be reimbursed if the microform does not contain the hoped-for information.
Compiled by Carolyn Ford and Bryan Mulcahy
Fort Myers-Lee County Library, 2/17/2012