A Report from RootsTech2018, with Pictures

RootsTech2018 was held in Salt Lake City on February 28 through March 3. I was fortunate enough to be able to attend. I can also state that I am exhausted. It must have been a great event!

The crowds were huge. I never heard the final attendance figures but I believe about 14,000 genealogists attended the sessions on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday. Saturday was Family Discovery Day in which an additional 12,000+ adults and teenagers attended sessions specifically designed for members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. There were times you could barely walk sideways through the throngs of people in the hallways and in the exhibits hall.

More than 200 presentations on a wide variety of family history topics plus an exhibits hall that was filled with hundreds of vendors exhibiting their products and services. I could write about each day’s events but there seems to be little need for my descriptions. You can learn a lot more and even watch videos of many of the sessions by starting at https://www.rootstech.org and then clicking through the many pages of information, pictures, and videos found on that site. I can especially recommend the video at https://youtu.be/fM1OLBP6YSo and also shown here:

I am also including a huge number of photographs I took at RootsTech2018 at the end of this article.


The highlight of the week for me was the dinner for readers of this newsletter, held soon after the RootsTech conference ended on Saturday evening. In the photo below, you can see me and Hazel Marshall, winner of an Apple iPod Touch doorprize.


RootsTech2019 will be held February 27–March 2, 2019. It should be even bigger (!) and better than this year’s edition, if that is possible. Would you like to attend? If so, you will want to mark your calendar now. It will be held once again at the Salt Palace in Salt Lake City. You can learn more at: https://www.rootstech.org.

Will I see you there?

Here are some of my pictures from RootsTech2018:

One of the daily opening sessions is shown above. This picture only shows about a third of the crowd in attendance. I needed a wide angle lens in order to get a picture of everyone!


One picture of some of the crowds in the hallway

These are just a couple of the hand-painted images from Heritage Fine Art Services that can be created from your pictures or from live models in the artist’s studio.

Why would anyone want a printed syllabus? These are some of the boxes of very thick printed versions of the syllabus, costing $50 each. Or you could obtain the same thing on a  flash drive weighing about one ounce! I got mine on a flash drive and then copied the entire syllabus to my storage area in the cloud. I can now find any words or phrases within the syllabus within seconds, much faster than trying to do the same thing on paper!

This was a nice convenience: tables where you could sit, relax, and perhaps check your email messages with your own laptop or tablet computer or by using your cell phone.

That’s me and my “twin brother.” Well, at least we wear similar hats. That’s me on the left and Graham Walter from England (and originally from Australia) on the right.

The MyHeritage booth was crowded almost all the time during the event.

Aaron Godfrey of MyHeritage (shown on the right) introduced two long-lost sisters who were separated as infants and then found each other after many years, thanks to MyHeritage DNA tests.

No, that is not my family tree!

Perhaps the best (?) online database of tombstones? BillionGraves.com

This is a close-up of the QromaScan. (See my earlier article at https://blog.eogn.com/2015/05/12/qromascan-a-new-smarter-way-to-scan-photos/ for details.)

Myko Clelland entertains the crowd in the Findmypast booth. If you haven’t heard Myko make a presentation, you have missed something good!
As always, Ancestry had a very large and very crowded exhibit.
FamilySearch also had a large and very crowded exhibit.
One thing that impressed me was FamilySearch’s app that allows conference attendees to find cousins who also were attending the conference. You can see the statistics above and this picture was taken only part way through the four-day event. The final numbers were obviously much larger!


23andMe also had a very busy display booth

Dallan Quass shows the many features of rootsFinder to a show attendee. For more information about rootsFinder, see my earlier article at: https://blog.eogn.com/2018/02/20/rootsfinder-delivers-powerful-new-tools-to-genealogists-for-free/

Heredis is a very popular genealogy program, available for both Windows and Macintosh. It is one of the most popular genealogy programs in Europe. The producers of the program traveled from France to Salt Lake City to show the program in operation to everyone.

Another view of the Heredis booth

RootsMagic is one of the most popular genealogy programs in the USA.

GenealogyBank is best known in the genealogy community for its huge online collection of old newspapers.

Paul Woodbury, Senior Genetic Genealogist at Legacy Tree Genealogists

Geni’s large exhibit booth at the conference

Have Chinese ancestry? If so, you need to talk with QingTime

LeRoy Maughan of Storybook, a multimedia publishing product. Storybook is impressive. I can only describe it as a book on steroids. That is, it is much, more than a book!

FamilySearch would scan old papers and even entire books at the conference.

Two of the automobiles from BYU’s Relative Race television series





Awesome! Thanks for all the photos and comments, Dick. This looks like a fantastic event. I hope to make it there next year from England. Is there a way to purchase the syllabus online if you couldn’t attend in person? It would be great to have.


Barbara Curtindale March 6, 2018 at 7:02 am

Great pics, wish I could attend sometime. Some interesting booths, I hope some get to the NGS or FGS conferences in 2018,.In Grand Rapids, MI and Ft. Wayne ,IN.


Would u supply a link for Storybook? Even with LeRoy’s name added I can’t find one.


Thanks for sharing the pictures Dick.Too many people for my tastes but I did watch some of the streaming sessions.


Thanks for all the photos Dick. Interesting to see some photos with crowds and others less crowded.


Thank you for the pictures Dick. I was so busy attending sessions and visiting exhibitors that I only took a few pictures. Also, thank YOU for the wonderful dinner on Saturday evening! A great ending to a wonderful week!


Thanks for the post giving a perspective on the meeting. Fascinating and informative.


Dick, thank you for sharing these photos with us. I really appreciate it.


Dick: Thank you for a great visual tour of RootsTech. I am stunned by the number of participants and vendors. What a great variety of topics, people, exhibits and information you have shared with us.


Muriel K. Jackson March 6, 2018 at 4:44 pm

Your series proved a picture is worth 1,000 words!


This was my first RootsTech and I really enjoyed it. Your dinner event was terrific. I connected with folks that I enjoyed meeting. Thanks


We’re not able to attend genealogy conferences any longer for health reasons, so your wonderful group of pictures almost made me feel like we were there. Thanks.


Glad you stopped by the FOREVER.com booth for a little while, and hope you enjoyed the conference! We love being a part of RootsTech


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