The story of Granite Mountain has fascinated me for as long as I have been interested in family history.
Granite Mountain holds the largest archived collection of genealogical records in the world. The 65,000 square foot vault is a man-made underground structure that was carved into the mountain's solid quartz monzonite foundation during a five year period ending in 1965. Located near Salt Lake City, Utah, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS) built the facility to safely store their records and the massive family history and vital records collection. FamilySearch, a LDS genealogy organization, manages the facility.
The audacity of the idea to build an indestructible granite vault to accumulate, protect and share the world's family history records is astonishing on its own. However, to absorb the enormous initial construction expense, and then continue to build and develop the collection is exceptional by any standard.
The archived genealogy collections include vital records and family history from more than 100 countries. Records include paper documents, books, microfilmed records, and digital image, text, audio and video files... millions and more millions of them!
Though personal visits to the site are not allowed due to security and contamination issues, FamilySearch is rapidly scanning, digitizing, indexing and providing public access to their collection online at no charge. The thousands of indexing volunteers play an important role in making this possible ("No special skills are required! Join in indexing today on the worldwide effort to bring records access to everyone"). The LDS also make their family history records available at no cost to members and the public at 4600 of their family history centers worldwide (there is a small shipping fee if you need a microfilm shipped to your local Family History Center from Utah, that they don't have locally).
FamilySearch produced these two videos take you on a tour of Granite Mountain and provide some interesting facts about the collection and their work...
Part 1 - Granite Mountain Records Vault, FamilySearch Genealogy Records
Part 2 - Granite Mountain Records Vault, FamilySearch Genealogy Records
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