Genealogy & Education Center Services

Genealogy & Education Center staff and volunteers will provide full and collaborative genealogical research services for visiting patrons as well as individuals living at a distance. To see information about on-site research, visit the Genealogy Resources page.

Deposits are required with the full research request forms and the rest of the payment will be invoiced once the research is completed to account for any additional charges that may accrue during the project and for printing and postage at the end. Packages and other fees will continue to be priced for members and non-members. If you are interested in becoming a member, you can sign-up on the museum’s website. Collaborative research will be paid for on-site.


Genealogy & Education Center translators are able to translate most Danish letters and small documents, including some in Old Danish and Gothic handwriting or print, as well as Danish church and census records, and can make referrals for translations of both modern and Gothic German-language documents. Because the Old Danish and Gothic scripts are much more difficult to decipher, times can take longer or they may not be able to be translated by our workers. We will do our best, however, if we cannot translate the document, we may suggest alternative options. Translation fees are a pay-by-the hour with a one-hour deposit required at the time of the request.

Please note:

Deposits are non-refundable. They pay for the first portion of our work. Even if we can’t find much, we did put time into researching and you will receive what we were able to locate.

To Request a Translation

  • Send or email a clear copy of the material to be translated, rather than the originals. Museum of Danish America cannot be responsible for original documents.
  • Print and fill out the Translation Request Form.
  • Include a check or money order for a minimum of 1 hour's work, payable to "Museum of Danish America."
  • Completion time is usually 2-10 weeks.

To Request Research

  • Print and fill out the research request form. Be clear on who you want to be researched and attach any supporting information that may be useful. Request forms are found below under "Fees."
  • Fill out the payment information on the back of the research form for your deposit. You can pay online below or with a check, money order, or credit card. Everything will be payable to "Museum of Danish America." 
  • We will acknowledge research requests and payment upon receipt. Due to the large number of requests we receive, limited staff, and our policy of taking them in date order, our response time can take between 2-10 weeks. We appreciate your patience.

Send by E-Mail:

If you want to submit your request by email, you are welcome to do so and then send the deposit payment through the postal service. If this is what is done, please make a note on the research form that the deposit is coming in the mail so we know to watch for it.
Subject: Research/Translation Request 

Send by Mail:

Research/Translation Requests
Museum of Danish America Genealogy & Education Center
PO Box 249
Elk Horn IA 51531-0249 


  • Full service
    • Genealogy Center staff and volunteers do all of the research
    • Museum of Danish America members $40.00 per hour
    • Non-members $50.00 per hour
    • Requires a $120/$150 deposit fee
    • Request form
    • Pay Online: Pay your deposit for genealogy research here. You will receive an invoice for the remaining amount at the completion of the project.

  • Collaborative
    • You do most of the work with the support and/or occasional assistance from staff or volunteers. This is great for those that want to learn to do Danish genealogy in a hands-on manner.
    • Museum of Danish America members $20.00 per hour
    • Non-members $30.00 per hour
    • Request form - We ask for this so we can do a preliminary search of records if needed.

Additional Fee Information:

  • Fees are non-refundable. Even if we can’t find anything, we’ve put in the research hours
  • Deposits are non-refundable. They pay for the first portion of our work. Even if we can’t find much, we did put time into researching and you will receive what we were able to locate.
  • Occasionally, individuals do not agree with information we find - whether it be names, birth legitimacy, or how family stories and legends end up being not quite accurate. However, we do our very best to back up all information with multiple primary sources that prove the accuracy and recheck our work multiple times throughout the research process.
  • A postage/handling fee will be added to all requests, in addition to document and photocopying charges.

Gift Certificates are also available for research and translations.

Questions: or 712-764-7008

Additional Research Services

Copies of Genealogy & Education Center files and documents are $.25/page, plus postage.

Individuals interested in Danish Brotherhood records may request either a transcript of the record, which is included in the research fee, or microfilm copies (each listing takes a minimum of 2 prints; some individuals were members of lodges in various localities during their lifetime and hence have several listings). Searches involving Danish Brotherhood records only require a 1-hour advance search fee per name. Queries are answered in the order of receipt of payment.

We have the bound, physical copies of the Elk Horn-Kimballton Review newspaper from 1928-2007. We can search them for obituaries or other articles if an approximate date is given. There will be a one-hour minimum fee. When found, the article can be scanned and emailed or sent through the postal service for an additional charge.

Additional Research Resources

While we cannot vouch for their research products, for those of you wanting a quicker turn-around time, the following individuals may be helpful:

  • Per Andersen of Copenhagen offers his research services. His webpage is and he can be contacted by email.
  • Former Museum of Danish America intern Jesper Jacobsen specializes in a variety of less-accessible legal documents. He may be contacted by email.
  • Free-lance journalist Ejgil Bodilsen offers assistance for people with ancestors from Han Herred in Thisted and Hjørring Counties.
  • Morten B. Petersen offers research services, archival research at the National Archives in Copenhagen as well as the City Archives of Copenhagen, and translation of documents in Danish (1800s and onwards). He may be contacted by email.

Danish Immigrants

Museum of Danish America and its Genealogy & Education Center are continually seeking and collecting information on Danish immigrants who came to North America. To create a file for your ancestors, print our Immigrant Information Form, fill it out, and send it to us with any additional documentation you care to share.

Honoring Danish Ancestors:
Danish ancestors may be honored in perpetuity by having a plaque with their names, dates of immigration, and area of settlement placed on The Danish Immigrant Wall of Honor. For information about submitting names go to the Danish Immigrant Wall of Honor.