Ancestry Institution

Where did previous generations come from? How did they live? What did they fight for? And how did their lives affect yours?

Historical records and photos hold so many answers about the fascinating people in history. Ancestry Institution puts them at your fingertips, enabling both research and invite critical thinking.

Whether you’re in a library using or in a classroom experiencing our K-12 program, Ancestry Institution provides access to the world’s largest online family history resource.

Ancestry Institution Includes:

  • K-12 Program – we offer a program specific for K-12 students that includes curriculum focused on family history.
  • Ancestry Library Edition – we offer in libraries around the world to help people research their family history.
  • Special Programs – we work with individual organizations to offer grants that support their family history efforts.

Fast Facts About Ancestry Institution:

  • Lets you access a vast collection of U.S. and international documents online
  • Images of original documents enhance research and critical thinking
  • Includes narratives, oral histories, indexes and abstracts to other resources
  • You can search over 30,000 record collections and 11 billion records with a click of a button
  • Record collections span the 1500s–2000s

Ancestry Library Edition is an absolutely necessary resource for our library.  The level of genealogical research our patrons and staff are currently able to do using Ancestry Library Edition would be extremely difficult or impossible without this invaluable tool.

—Traci Thompson, Local History/Genealogy Librarian,
Braswell Memorial Library, Rocky Mount, NCEducation

Have you used historical records as a teaching tool? Do you need a great lesson plan that brings history to life for K-12 students? Are you interested in incorporating family history research into your classroom but aren’t sure where to start? is the world’s largest online family history resource, and home to billions of historical records that can help students discover fascinating facts about previous generations. Ancestry Institution allows you to give students a unique perspective on history — while enjoying a forum for sharing ideas with other teachers. The resources we offer support state standards, and were created specifically for schools that require curriculum around original or primary documents.

We provide lesson plans ranging in topic from the U.S. Civil War to the 1940 U.S. Census to help you integrate historical records into lesson plans, teach students how to manage research projects, approach critical thinking and gain the communication skills needed in life.

Our Lesson Plans Include:

  • The 1940 Census
  • The Census and the Constitution
  • The Census and the Depression
  • Autobiography
  • Biography
  • Immigration over Time
  • Civil War
  • Military (Civil War)
  • Personal Side of War (American Revolutionary War)
  • War of 1812 Privateers
  • Mobilization for War (WWI)
  • WWII Battles
  • Local History Is Your Community History
  • Historical Crime
  • Haunted House
  • The Suffrage Movement
  • How Life Influences Art
  • African American Congressmen
  • The Trail of Tears

See a sample lesson plan

Contact Ancestry Library Team to find out more about these lesson plans or our K-12 Teacher Grant program, or to get a copy of the curriculum for your classroom.

As a New York City educator, I’ve found the extensive resources on to be an invaluable teaching tool.

—Tamara I., NYC Dept. of Education

We’ve partnered with ProQuest to offer a special collection of records in the Ancestry Library Edition that will enhance the offerings of any library. In addition to a vast resource of collections, we offer a comprehensive research experience combining our advanced search technology and image viewing of original documents on

Ancestry Library Edition is available in the U.S., the UK, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Denmark, Ireland and Norway, and provides access to billions of historical documents, millions of historical photos, plus local narratives, oral histories, indexes and other resources in over 30,000 databases that span from the 1500s to the 2000s.

Ancestry Library Edition is a valuable tool in my library.  It opens up a world of records to my customers and allows staff to give great customer service.  I never thought I would see a day that researching genealogy records for any location in the world would be so easy!

—Janice Schultz, Genealogy Librarian, Midwest
Genealogy Center, Mid-Continent Public Library

Ancestry Institution Grant Program

We’ve offered grants to a few organizations in support of their family history efforts:

  • National Society, Sons of the American Revolution (NSSAR) – We’ve partnered with the NSSAR to develop a program called Operation Ancestor Search (OAS), a free family-history training program for Wounded Warriors, their families and the medical and installation staff responsible for their care. OAS offers knowledge and tools to help participants research their family history as they recover from their injuries at military hospitals.
  • Fort Thomas Military & Community Military Museum (KY) – In 20113we provided access at the museum to help K-12 students and others learn about U.S. migration through their family stories and those of early Kentucky settlers.
  • McDaniel-Tichenor House (GA) – Since 2012, Ancestry Institution access has helped with the research of all residents who live in the Gov. McDaniel home so as to share the history of the home and its residents with the community.
  • Huntsville High School (AL) – As part of the Save Our History Grant program from the History Channel, the project “Real History, Real People: Madison County, AL 1861-1865” used Ancestry Institution to help identify people in Madison Co./Huntsville during the Civil War.
  • Veteran Support Center Volunteers (TN) – Ancestry Institution helps staff locate vital records, census records and others that might help the veterans struggling to receive VA benefits.
  • Harris County District Clerks Office (TX) – We provide access to the Harris County District Clerks Office museum so they can document early county clerks through stories and historical context from around the county.
  • Fort Worth Police Historical Association (TX) – Ancestry Institution is supporting this organization in documenting all the police officers that have served the city — many dating all the way back to early Texas immigrants.

Ancestry Education Grants

A few education organizations we’ve offered grants to in support of their family history efforts:

  • University of Indianapolis – Students, faculty and staff are encouraged to explore and reflect on how their family history impacts their identity, and all can access from computers and mobile devices anywhere on campus. also provides on-campus education to help them make the most of
  • American Library Association – The organization’s Reference Users Service Association uses Ancestry Institution for an online Genealogy 101 class taught by staff at The Newberry Library to librarians and library students.
  • Samford University Library – As part of the University Library, the Institute of Genealogy & Historical Research uses Ancestry Institution for students’ in-depth study of family history.

We’ve partnered with ProQuest, the leader in connecting people with reliable information and a gateway to the world’s knowledge, to provide everything from educational materials to usage statistics. View ProQuest’s Genealogy Research Tools to get tips for using Ancestry Library Edition and sign up for webinars.