1 of 5
Provided by Sue Nielsen
Sue Nielsen on land owned by her great-great-grandparents Jacob Lindsay Workman and Rebecca Willard Turner Workman during a trip Nauvoo, Illinois. Prior to the trip, her husband, Ernest, helped research their ties to the pioneers in the area.

Editor's note: The Deseret News asked for experiences of those whose trips have helped them connect with their family roots and how families have incorporated their history into summer vacations. Here is one of the experiences. It has been edited for length and clarity.

We have enjoyed traveling with two other couples to get away from time to time. It is a relaxing way to get away together.

We determined to take a LDS Church heritage trip and go to Nauvoo, Illinois, and visit those sites related to the history of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the area.

Provided by Sue Nielsen
Dan Collett at the gravestone of Washington Taggart, who is one if his ancestors, near Nauvoo, Illinois. Prior to the trip that Sue and Ernest Nielsen took with two other couples, including the Colletts, Ernest helped research their ties to the pioneers in the area.

As a gift, my husband, Ernest, decided to research the family ancestry of those joining us on the trip. He worked to identify specifically those relatives who had come through the Nauvoo area. It was a surprise for them, so we located names of deceased relatives and looked them up on FamilySearch.

He got so interested in the people that he extracted stories from the "memories" section when they included parts of the heritage from that area and time. He ended up compiling a booklet of stories for each person, including maps of Old Nauvoo, and reserved temple ordinance cards.

Comment on this story

When we got to Nauvoo, he presented each person with their booklet and temple cards. We had reserved time for temple sealings in the Nauvoo Illinois Temple. The next day, we did baptisms and sealings in the temple. Then we located the property locations where some of the people had lived. We also found some gravestones in the Old Cemetery at Nauvoo.

It absolutely made the trip extra meaningful and spiritual. We loved all the events and performances in Nauvoo and the dedicated missionary volunteers at all the LDS Church sites.