Attractive Statesville

Local History Notes

Notes about the history of Iredell County by Joel Reese, Local History Librarian.

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Dec 23 at the Library

Posted on December 23, 2019 at 3:42 PM by Jenny Levins

Most of you have probably seen ads on TV for the genealogical website, Ancestry is the largest for-profit genealogy company in the world. It is basically an online pay Internet site offering access to over 16 billion historical and genealogical records and has over 2 million paying customers. 

This Wednesday, Nov. 23, at 12 noon I will be presenting a program on how to use the library’s subscription to Ancestry Library Edition to conduct family history research. 

Ancestry is the most popular pay-per-view genealogy site out there. A monthly subscription giving you full access is $44.99 a month though you can save $70 by purchasing a six-month membership for $199. The library here in Statesville now offers free access to much of what Ancestry offers through our library’s subscription to Ancestry. 

To access the site, you begin by logging in on one of our public Internet computers with your library card and pin numbers. The first screen that comes up will be the library homepage at  Move your cursor over “Research & Learning” along the top of the page and then click on “Local History & Genealogy.” The Local History Department webpage will come up listing the databases we provide for our patrons under “”Local History Resources.” 
Listed first is “Ancestry Library Edition.” 

Ancestry sells a special subscription to public libraries, but the subscription is only accessible inside the library building. You cannot link to the site and use it from home.  Listed below “Ancestry” are other historical and genealogical websites you can access from home. Once you click on one of these sites you will be asked to enter your library card number and pin number which is usually set to be the last four digits of your phone number. 

Ancestry is based in Lehi, Utah. The company owns several online websites in addition to its flagship site at Other online sites operated by Ancestry include AncestryDNA, AncestryHealth, AncestryProGenealogists,, Family Tree Maker, Find a Grave, Fold3,, and Rootsweb. 

Patrons using Ancestry at the library can access millions of official historical records such as census, military, marriage, birth and death records. You can also create your own online family trees with links to records and photographs you have uploaded.  Ancestry has more than 70 million family trees and subscribers have added more than 200 million photographs. can trace its roots back to 1983 when it was started by John Sittner as a genealogy newsletter. It was issued as a magazine in January 1994 and was published for 25 years before being discontinued in 2010. The company has gone through various changes of ownership and is now a publicly traded company on the NASDAQ under the symbol ACOM. 

Joel Reese, Local History Librarian
Iredell County Public Library

This article was published in the Statesville Record and Landmark in November 2016