Those interested in tracing their family tree can find help at the Community Library in Sunbury.

Those interested in tracing their family tree can find help at the Community Library in Sunbury.

From 1 to 3 p.m. on the second Thursday of each month, the library will hold an open discussion-and-help session for those trying to discover their roots. The first meeting is scheduled for April 8.

The library is at 44 Burrer Drive in Sunbury.

"Each session will feature an informal presentation on resources and research tips by library staff, and you will have the opportunity to share your favorite resources and research tips as well," library director Chauncey Montgomery said.

Library employee Margaret Arnold said in an e-mail, "Offering programs and services related to genealogy addresses the desire of community residents to know and better understand personal or community heritage."

The community has made it clear that local history and genealogy are important, she said.

Residents don't have to wait for the monthly meetings to get help, she said. Library staff members are willing to help anyone at any time.

There is no limit on how many people may join the discussions, which are free of charge.

"We would like to create an informal atmosphere where people who are interested in genealogy can come and share tips and tricks, talk about research hurdles they have overcome and get help getting to information they haven't been able to find," she said.

The library is equipped with laptops featuring Ancestry Plus, an online database that assists library users in tracking down ancestors.

Montgomery said Ancestry Plus "has more than 5-billion names and 23,000 searchable databases. It is the number one online source for family history information, including the Web's largest collection of historical records."

Ancestry Plus can be accessed only at the library, he said.

The library also subscribes to HeritageQuest Online, which "combines digital, searchable images of U.S. federal census records with the digitized version of popular genealogy and local history collections," he said.

HeritageQuest can be accessed at anytime from any computer, he said.

Go to http://community.lib.oh.us/ online/databases.php to access it and other databases, he said.

Several residents have called the library to ask if there is an evening time for the genealogy discussions, Arnold said. If enough people call with an interest in evening sessions, the library will schedule them.

The library's phone number is (740) 965-3901.

calexis@thisweeknews.com