Prisons protect citizens from people who have been unable or unwilling to
conform to society. Whenever possible prisioners should be engaged in productive
efforts. It is healthier for the prison population - prisioners and
staff. It does not stimulate them in negative ways. In addition to the actual
work, it may encourage them to want to know more about history in general or
their personal family history. Indexing is interesting. Your mind wonders about
the motives for people to stayput in small communities or to relocate to other
places you have never heard about. Why is Sara Jane the mother of 8, but only 3
children are living? Engaging the mind is a good thing. I applaud
the folks involved in this project.
This is so cool! You can't steal an identity from a dead man are you kidding me
people? Everyone loves to do some good and this is a great opprotunity. For
anyone interested you should know that you don't have to be locked up to do
this. Just ask any mormon friend if you are interested in doing family history.
I'm sure there are guys that get involved with this program because they are
trying work some sort of racket (and hopefully the safeguards they've put in
place are sufficient to prevent them). On the other hand, the atmosphere inside
means that far too many inmates come out worse than they went in. While it may
be naive, this program offers inmates a glimpse of a different way of looking at
the world, and perhaps some hope which prison is sorely lacking. We need many
more such programs.Thanks for the article.
Anonymous- You couldn't qualify to work there - you are clueless. It is hard to
steal the identity of people that have been dead for decades.As a
volunteer in the center I find that there is a very thin line between them and
you and I. By the grace of God we are not in there with them. Most have
made only one or two samll mistakes and are paying the price for what they have
done. It has been a pleasure for me to give of my time so that these men have
and opportunity to help other with their genealogy and and for themselves. May this work continue so that those on the inside and outside can
benefit from this great work.
What a wonderful experience for the inmates to connect with those that have gone
before them and maybe leave a legacy of love for them. I was very impressed
with this article and am grateful for their contribution in maybe helping me to
find names of my family.
I have done extraction work for a long time and wondered what happened when it
was abandoned in our area. I finally found that this indexing program replaced
it. Not only do you not have to be "called " to do it, you don't even have to
be a member. The extraction program has been at the prison for quite a
while....and now the inmates are able to continue their skils with the Indexing.
I am so excited and happy for them.
This is crazy!!! Can you say.... massive identy theft!!! This is the most
foolish project ever, giving vital information to felons who are in there for
stealing, burglarizing, fraud, and identy theft. Fool hardy at best, evil at
What a wonderful oppotunity for those in prison to do good work for others.
This is a program that should be introduced into more prisons. Give back and
serve others. What a humbling experience for all involved.
Thanks for such a wonderful article. It's about time we hear some positive
news!! What a fabulous way to spend ones time, in the service of others. Thanks
to the inmates for doing this work. I have been doing research for 21 years and
have probably benefited from some of their efforts. Keep up the wonderful and so
important work and thanks again-I hope the inmates get a chance to see all the
comments-except for 1 they all are positive.
This story is a timely reminder that prisoners are also "childern of a Heavenly
Father who loves them"; in spite of stereotypes and strawmen set up by media and
politicians for their own purposes. But the blessings of doing family history
work cannot be denied to anyone who takes it on.
This program proves that there are many inmates who are eager to participate in
meaningful work while in prison. There is a huge difference between "doing" and
"serving" time in prison. Instead of throwing people in prison to "do" time,
let us find more opportunities like this where people in prison can "serve"
What an inspired program. How I wish this could be done in Florida. I have a son
who is locked up here. He has a very strong testimony. He would love to do this
work. The spirit of the Lord will bless those who do this work. It helps so many
people and draws family members closer to each other. May this program spread
to many places.
Tears came to my eyes as I read this article. It seems that 'other' prison wall
were being tossed aside by the marvelous work in which the inmates were
participating. I am speaking specifically of the inmates' own prison walls of
loneliness. It proves that no one is beyond the Lord's compassionate reach.
what a great story! As a FHC Director myself, it is inspiring to hear a
wonderful story like this one. Keep up the good work.
I'm very impressed. If more prisons could set up programs like this, a lot of
brick walls might be broken down.
"The hearts of the children shall be turned to their fathers."Malachi and the Doctrine and Covenants.I hope this program expands
and has a big impact on reforming many men and women who have had to pay time
for mistakes.Good journalism and very uplifting and informative.
Boy, is it nice to read about positive activities!Congratulations and
thanks to everyone involved!
This is really nice. Maybe they can help me find information on my family.
Wonder if they do look ups for any one? Vicki
"Hey": Didn't you read the article? It says that they are allowed to research
names only of those who have been dead for decades in order to prevent identity
theft. Whoever is running this program beat you to thinking of the problem.
Can't escape the Mormons even in prison... Just kidding (I think).
I enjoy family history, too. Good use of their time. Kudos.
Couldn't this innocent practice by inmates be exploited as an easy gateway to
You know, I think this is the FIRST article I have read in the Deseret News that
does not have one negative, sarcastic, irresponsible comment!! (great
article)Congratulations inmates, Utah State Prison, and LDS Church
for a great program.
I think this is a great program. Family History work gives me such great
perspective on myself and my own problems and brings me such a feeling a peace.
Peace and Perspective are two things I am certain would be helpful to a prison
Their research is tedious, but if one family name pops up it will be
rewarding.An artist friend of mine spent two afternoons every week
teaching art to inmates. It was very well received, so I suggest this as
Excellent, Super, Outstanding, Wonderful, Marvelous. I do not know what more I
can say. This is a great blessing to everyone. To those who have gone on before
us and those who will come after us. Not to say the great blessing we are
receiving from all of you service and dedicated hard work. Thank you very much.
This is a great thing. Hats off to whoever initiated putting the centers in the
prison. I can think of no other activity that is more uplifting than connecting
with our ancestors.
We served a 2 1/2 yr mission in this very family history center and continue on
as volunteers. We see such positive changes come about in the demeanor and
attitudes of the men. It is an amazing and inspired program and we'll probably
continue on as volunteers until we drop:)
I think that it is a great idea, if it helps them change their lives. I know it
will help us find our families.....this infromation if invaluable.
The way finding ancestors makes these people feel could do nothing but good for
Great article! What a positive way for the inmates to spend their time. What a
fun Missionary experience too.
Of all the things inmates could spend their time doing, I think this is one of
the best.Doing geneology gives these men perspective on their own
lives. Helps them reach beyond their own immediate circumstances.