LIBRARY: J Erikson Dallas Main library genealogy floor

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If I could spend 24/7 at this library, it think it still wouldn’t be enough time. After my first visit, and my MS/AL trip, I felt I was better prepared. Hahaha and some more hahahahaha. I wanted to take pictures to give you a general idea of why I find this particular library so amazing, and I was granted permission. Next tim I’ll get better pics plus some from the amazing Dallas views from the 8th Floor! I can’t wait until one day I’m able to go to National Archives (NARA) or maybe even one day the LDS main site in SLC, Utah. Even more Franklin County Archives in Alabama. But I have loved this library for decades.

The sun behind the buildings, their grandeur. The sky so blue with just a few clouds, as if someone took a brush and drew them in. Just gorgeous.
Yes, I was driving. This was as I entered downtown, heading towards the library.

This library is amazing, except for one thing. EVERY SINGLE TIME, even with OnStar and Google Maps, I can N E V E R find my way back to the Tollway and end up spending up to an hour trying to find my way out of downtown. I HATE it. I don’t understand why I can’t get any navigation to lead me back to the Tollway I came down on,. but bloody hell. It’s a nightmare. I don’t want 35. 45. Nor 75. I want the Tollway! Why a location that is such a resource to the city, region, heck even the state, can’t be mapped out better for navigation is beyond me. It’s around the corner from Dallas City Hall, used for too many protests than I can count (it’s legal to hold them on City Hall property, constitutional free speech and all). The American Airlines Center, home of the Dallas Mavericks and Dallas Stars is down here. The beloved Dallas Farmers Market. Aquarium, two central fine art museums, Arboretum, even probably one of the most famous US buildings in history outside the White House: the 6th Floor Book Depository & Dealy Plaza. (JFK, for those who are trying to remember why it sounds familiar 🤔).

The blue dot. How hard is it to get out of there back to DNT? 🤬🤬. I spent an HOUR trying to get out back to DNT and still ended up on I-35 home. 🤬

Mind you I’ve traveled from coast to coast with paper maps, charting my way on my own. I’ve traveled all over Southern California, including Los Angeles and lived in San Diego. I could go back to places I hadn’t been in years and still found my way without directions. This trip was the first ever using navigation systems in first time visited places yet I S T I L L get VERY lost from the library. Can always find my way home from the Farmers Market though. Ok, moving on.

Due to Covid, the library is still on appointment based visits so you should plan in advance. I went prepared with my laptop, tablet, phone and only a handful of papers, an Atlas, maps. Since I didn’t want to leave to eat, I also grabbed a couple Slim Fasts I could nurse, and a water bottle for taking meds and hydration. I drank my Starbucks before I went in. Trying to show how you should plan ahead for personal needs when a day visit on the schedule.

Parking in the underground garage is fun and the elevator ride to the 8th Floor gets the blood pumping faster, knowing they would open to an amazing floor, ready for me to try and extract more family details. Oddly, when I see family names in books, it’s almost like touching them.

This is the left side of the floor, dedicated solely to Genealogy. This is the gateway to so many books, resources holding the secrets of so many families.
In the picture just above, you can see this station. I believe for appointments, it’s Station 3 Microfilm. This is where I was camped out in my July visit. Believe me, spending hours reading black background Census records is a nightmare on the eyes. (Nightmare? Get it?)
This is to the right, and honestly, aside from the long cabinet on the other side of the center column which houses the microfilm for censuses, I’ve not really explored that side of the library.
This is to the left, and again, what the cabinets there in the forefront contain are beyond me. I’m there for the books on the stacks.
The row of stacks, arranged by state in alpha order.
FamilySearch, the site dedicated to genealogy by the Mormon church, has its own room within the library. Inside contains technology for scanning books, several stations for people with FamilySearch (or the church itself) whose job it appears to be scanning book after book.
I’m not sure yet what military records are contained in these files. I’m trying to work through books first. The lower drawers appear to be microfilm sized. Those doors to the left, I think is for staff but it’s sure a curiosity what’s behind them.
You can see Alabama is on two sides of the stacks. The row of books goes all the way back to where you see the second set of stacks (which ironically against the wall is Mississippi).
Mississippi goes about half way down. There’s a few counties on the opposite back wall (A-C) but most of what I’m there for is right here.

I was there for 8 hours. I can tell you it still wasn’t enough time. Just before closing, a man walked by to his table near me and I curiously asked “what state are you researching?” To which he replied, “Alabama”. I giggled. “What county?” “ Clarke.” “Really, what surname?” I leave the rest out, but suffice to say the only person I talked to all day, ended up being someone who is researching my paternal line. Serendipity We kept talking till they literally begged us to leave (haha) and then started talking in the garage. Apparently because it’s an underground parking lot, it is closed up so we got kicked out of there too! 🤣🤣 Hiyaz Terry!

2 thoughts on “LIBRARY: J Erikson Dallas Main library genealogy floor

  1. Stonznbonz it was inspirational to meet you! What are the odds we could have planned our meeting and have a connecting history? Fate always encourages the best of us to be better, work a little harder and dig deeper to reveal the evidence that our ancestors truly existed. Thank you for the blog!!


    1. It was so wonderful to meet you as well~ I look forward to working with you in the future, catching up with you at the library again and here’s to wishing you a wonderful New Year!!


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