Genealogy Center Services

Genealogy Center staff and volunteers will provide 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. 

Genealogy Center translators are able to translate most Danish letters and documents, including those in old 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.

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 1-4 weeks.

To Request Research

  • Fill out the Research Request form. Enclose the completed form with any supporting information that may be useful.
  • Fill out and return a Payment form with a check, money order, or credit card information for a minimum of 3 hours' work, payable to "Museum of Danish America."
    • Danish residents: you can also pay with check, money order, or credit card.
  • 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 6-16 weeks. We appreciate your patience.

Send by E-Mail:
Subject: Research/Translation Request

Or Send by Mail:

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


  • $40 per hour for members of Museum of Danish America.
  • $50 per hour for non-members.
  • 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 & Estimates

Genealogy Center Manager

Translation & Research Guidelines

Research fees are $40/hour for museum members (to take advantage of the member rate, become a member online at, $50/hour for non-members; plus postage, copying and document fees. A 3-hour minimum retainer, payable to Museum of Danish America, and a completed Research Request Form should be sent to the above address. Some inquiries can be answered in this amount of time, but most of our research projects average around 10 hours, so please also specify a maximum number of hours you wish to be spent on the search before a report is made. You will be invoiced for the remaining amount when the research is completed.

Copies of Genealogy Center files and documents are $.25/page, plus postage. Copies of courthouse and other documents will vary in price.

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. Due to the number of requests received, our response time usually varies between 10-16 weeks. Rest assured that we will get to your inquiry as soon as possible.

Translation fees are $40/hour for museum members and $50/hour for non-members, with a 1-hour minimum. Send or email a clear COPY of the original material to the address above, along with contact information. For lengthier or more involved projects, please contact the library and we will give you an estimate of the time needed for the translation.

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.
  • Family research, especially in the Southern Jutland/Slesvig area is offered here.
  • A. J. Kroneg offers archival research at the National Archives in Copenhagen.

Danish Immigrants

Museum of Danish America and its Genealogy 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.

Immigration Stories:

To hear stories about Danish immigrants and the many artifacts found in the museum collection, listen to the archived audio presentations, Across Oceans, Across Time®, broadcast locally by KJAN AM1220 and accessible through our broadcast link.