SDB Historical Society Changes Genealogy Policy

Written by Jeremiah Owen

March 11, 2014

For many years, the Seventh Day Baptist Historical Society has served genealogists with information about their SDB ancestors as we have had the resources and time to do so.  Our dedication to this service came from the knowledge that our collection is the only one of its kind and because our conviction that people who share in our heritage should have access to it.  Our convictions have not changed, but unfortunately, the Society’s resources have. 

Therefore, effective March 1, 2014, we have instituted a change in our genealogy assistance policy.  We will no longer be able to conduct broad genealogy research by phone, mail or email for patrons.  We urge all researchers to make full use of the growing resources available on our website,, to conduct their research.

family tree

Members and Friends of the Society have access to finding aids in the members area of the Society’s website, including the complete catalog of our resources and the index to our periodicals.  We will continue to serve PDF data (specific articles requested by paying members and friends) to researchers from the catalog and periodical index found on our website as we are able.  These requests will be handled in the order they are received and as time and other resources permit.

The library and archives at the SDB Center in Janesville, WI will continue to remain open to genealogists who wish to make use of the collection, providing they make an appointment.  We do not guarantee access to the library and archives on a walk-in basis, as we are moving to part-time staff at the conclusion of this year and need to prepare for that change in the intervening months.  We are aware that some of our potential users cannot make use of the finding aids available from our website and cannot make the trip to our offices.  We hope to create a list of independent genealogical contractors who could conduct research for such patrons, but at present we have no such list.  When such contractors become available, we will post the change on our website and refer genealogists to those who have expressed willingness to provide this service.

We regret the need to make this change in policy, but it was unavoidable.  If any researcher has questions about these changes, we encourage them to contact Librarian-Historian Nick Kersten either by email ( or by phone (608) 752-5055.

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