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Utah: Local History & Genealogy Resource Guide

Compiled by reference specialists at the Library of Congress, this guide identifies key print and online resources for pursuing family history, as well as state, county and municipal historical research, for the state of Utah.


Relief map of Utah
Mosiah Hall, cartographer. Relief map of Utah. 1895. Pierce and McMillan. Library of Congress Geography and Map Division.

Indigenous peoples inhabited the area of Utah for centuries, including the ancient Pueblo, Goshute, Paiute, Ute, Shoshone, and Navajo. Later, the Spanish explored the southern part of the state, looking for a route to California. Canadian trappers established settlements in the vicinity of the Great Salt Lake for many years while Utah was part of Mexico. Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints entered Utah in 1847 in search of religious freedom. After the Mexican-American War, Utah was annexed by the United States, as Utah Territory. Statehood was granted after the prohibition of polygamy in 1896.

Jurisdictions that might have records for Utah ancestors include Mexico, State of Deseret, Utah Territory, State of Utah, and the U.S. Federal Government.

This guide offers a selection of resources and strategies for Utah local history and genealogy research. These include the print and digital collections of the Library of Congress, as well as external repositories and web sites key to finding forebears in the Beehive State.

About Local History & Genealogy Reference Services

The Library of Congress has one of the world's premier collections of U.S. and foreign genealogical and local historical publications, numbering more than 50,000 compiled family histories and over 100,000 U.S. local histories. The Library's genealogy collection began as early as 1815 with the purchase of Thomas Jefferson's library.