Libraries and Archives Kathy Petras Library Associate Medina Library
Libraries and Archives……are a great resource for genealogists. But remember that most of the materials available in libraries and archives are secondary sources, written or compiled many years after the time of an event. Information found in secondary sources should, whenever possible, be verified in primary sources.
GENERAL RESEARCH TIPS:(Original guidelines from George Eastman) Employees of libraries are there to help you use the library’s resources, NOT to do your research. Familiarize yourself with the library; its physical set- up, bathroom facilities, location of copiers and prices for copies, the library’s policies, hours and restrictions. Bring your own pencils, paper, paper clips, change for the copier and other supplies. Check the online catalog from home to help identify which materials will be useful. Ask how to use the microfilm reader.
GENERAL RESEARCH TIPS, continued Please don’t bring children with you when you research genealogy. This applies to reluctant spouses, too. Realize that you cannot research all your relatives in one day. Prioritize your searches. DONT put the books and microfilm away. Thank the librarian for his/her help. I can guarantee they are not in this career for the money. Just because something is in print, does not mean it is true!
Types of Resources Available General Reference Indexes Family Histories Regional histories Military history Newspapers Magazines & newsletters Genealogy blogs & online newsletters
Types of Libraries and Archives Public libraries University libraries Historical and Genealogical libraries State and national libraries Family History Library and Family History Centers
Public Libraries Small local libraries – general genealogy information – local community families & history. Larger public libraries can have quite extensive genealogy collections. Even if your local public library does not have what you need, they may be able to obtain it for you through interlibrary loan (ILL.) – Local history materials do not circulate and therefore aren’t available for ILL. – But if the book is indexed and if specific surnames are needed, most libraries will photocopy the necessary information.
To find library materials…WorldCatalog – www.worldcat.org Largest network of library collections and services. Shows which libraries own the material you want. Order the material through your local library’s catalog or request through interlibrary loan. You CANNOT order directly through WorldCat at MCDL. Create a personal profile that tells others of your interests, create lists of materials, or post reviews of materials.
World Catalog, continued Find research articles, books, audio/video media. For genealogists; – Family histories – Family Bibles – Diaries or journals – County and state histories – Atlases – Autobiographies – Government records – Meeting minutes or proceedings – Indexes to birth, death and marriage records – Church histories
Some GREAT public libraries: Cleveland Public Library Cuyahoga County Public Library http://www.cuyahoga.lib.oh.us/genealogyexpert.aspx Columbus Metropolitan Library Allen County Public Library http://www.genealogycenter.org/Home.aspx Newberry Library
University Libraries University libraries can be an unexpected source for local, regional and state histories. They will lend many materials that public libraries will not. They are also more likely to charge to interlibrary loan materials.
Ohio Network of American HistoryResearch Centers As the archives administrator for the state of Ohio, the Ohio Historical Society organized the Ohio Network of American History Research Centers in the 1970’s to provide for the preservation of historically valuable local government records. http://www.ohiohistory.org/resource/lgr/networkl.html http://www.ohiohistory.org/resource/lgr/NetMap.pdf
Ohio Network of American HistoryResearch Centers University of Akron Bowling Green State University University of Cincinnati Ohio Historical Society Western Reserve Historical Society Wright State University Youngstown Historical Center of Industry & Labor
Historical and Genealogical SocietyLibraries Local historical and genealogical societies can have very fine collections relating to their community. State historical societies will have collections covering the entire state. Some regional historical societies have national reputations for their excellence, i.e. New England Historic Genealogical Society , the Western Reserve Historical Society and the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR.)
DAR Library Daughters of the American Revolution is one of the nations premier genealogical research centers. The Librarys book collection numbers over 150,000 volumes with approximately 5,000 new titles added to the Library each year. They are working hard to make their collection more accessible. http://www.dar.org/library/
Western Reserve Historical Society Is one of the largest genealogical collections in America; Strong in original records for northeast Ohio, but covers all of Ohio. It includes family and local histories, atlases, newspapers, census microfilm, city directories, many New England materials http://www.wrhs.org/
Ohio Genealogical Society Library OGS is the largest state genealogical society in the U.S. Their library has local and county histories, family histories, family Bible records, cemetery records, atlases, city directories, heritage society application papers, Ancestral Card File, genealogy periodicals www.ogs.org
Ohio Historical Society Library Has Ohio newspapers, Ohio Death Records Index, 1913-1944, manuscripts, genealogies, Ohio Vital Records, military records. Reduced budget, staffing and hours. http://www.ohiohistory.org/
Local Historical & GenealogicalSocieties Often have family and local history collections. Finding what they have and where they are located can be more challenging. Directory of Genealogical and Historical Societies, Libraries and Periodicals in the US and Canada R929.2 DIR
State and National Libraries Each state maintains a library or archive that houses the records that pertain to the state and its government. These holdings may include state censuses, state military, naturalization or passenger records. The material varies greatly from state to state.
Library of Congress The Library of Congress has one of the worlds premier collections of U.S. and foreign genealogical and local historical publications. The Library is rich in collections of manuscripts, microfilms, newspapers, photographs, maps, and published material. http://www.loc.gov/index.html
National Archives The National Archives is the repository of textual and microfilm records relating to genealogy, census, Revolutionary and Civil War Pensions, American Indians, pre-World War II military, the District of Columbia, the Federal Courts, and Congress. The National Archives has 16 regional facilities that house the complete federal census and any unique records for the geographical area it serves. http://archives.gov/
Family History Libraryand Family History Centers Because of their belief in the eternal nature of families, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has gathered genealogical records from all over the world to assist their members in identifying their ancestors. The main repository of these records is the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah. Family History Centers provide local access to these microfilms.
Family History Centers, continued… In the last couple of years, the Family History Library has been working hard to make many of these records available on their web site. You can search the records at their web site: www.familysearch.org For records not yet added to their web site, the Family History Centers provide local access to many of these materials through an interlibrary loan service. Currently, they charge $7.50 per reel There is a Family History Center at Granger and Windfall Rd.