14:47 PM

Kanab Area Family History Center Opening

Kanab5 Building with crowd in front Major Nina Laycook and others at the ribbon cutting of the New Kanab family history center, January 19.

In Kanab, Utah, the old and the new are coming together to create the perfect place to search for one’s ancestors and enjoy learning about some local history. A new family history center in Kanab opened to public on January 19 of this year.

The origins of this center started in 1924, when the community of Kanab built a community meeting house. This meeting house provided the humble beginnings of Kanab’s first family history center. In 1950, a new meeting house was built to replace the previous building. The family history center was moved to the new building, and the old building was used for other activities.

Kanab3 Inside with nobody The interior of this Kanab center reflects the architecture of the original building.

Over time, the 1950 meeting house could no longer meet all the needs of the growing community. Church leaders wanted to tear down the original meeting house built in 1924 and build a new church in its place. However, community members voiced their desire to keep the original building and demolish the 1950 meeting house instead, to make way for a brand new meetinghouse.

The original 1924 meetinghouse has now been refurbished and made into a wonderful combination of historical showcase of local culture and a family history center. Flat screen TVs can be found nestled in among relics and local artifacts dating back 100 years or more. You can see movies of local events and cultures of Kanab and the surrounding areas, along with displays showing the exploits of western explorer John Wesley Powell and his company of men.

Kanab4 inside with 2 boys at computer There are activities that even the young can get involved with to discover interesting things about their ancestors.

Along with these and other historical displays, the Kanab family history center provides research facilities that tourists and locals alike can use to begin doing their own family history research. In addition to the displays of local history and western culture, there are plenty of computer stations where folks can use state of the art technology to search more than 3 billion names that make up the FamilySearch database. FamilySearch is the largest free genealogical databases in the world, and it’s available to everyone.

A cozy theater is available to view instructional presentations, informative videos, and training sessions from Church Headquarters and other authorized sites. Elevators, new restrooms, and spacious meeting rooms make this an ideal place for people passing through to stop, get a drink of cold water, rest a bit, and see if maybe they might find one of their own ancestors in among the records of the Kanab, Utah, family history center.