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Mocavo

Some people eat, sleep and chew gum, I do genealogy and write...

Friday, February 15, 2013

Check out the public library

I would assume that genealogists are more prone than the general population to use their local public library. During my recent trip to Florida for presentations to four genealogical societies, I found that the Indian River Genealogical Society has a room for their society in the local county library. By the way, you can read about my presentation on their website. The library site is called JULIAN W. LOWENSTEIN ARCHIVE CENTER AND GENEALOGY DEPARTMENT. Quoting from their site:
In 1986, the small private library of Vero Beach was adopted by the Board of County Commissioners of Indian River County. The original collection of approximately 250 books was donated by IRGS. When the new library opened February 1, 1991, the genealogy collection of approximately 3000 books had a separate room with approximately 1000 square feet. Today, there is over 4000 square feet and over 40,000 titles, which includes the outside areas of the department where the microfilm and microfiche collections are located.
 If you check out your own library, you might just be surprised to find resources you didn't know existed. Vero Beach is the county seat of Indian River County on the East Coast of Florida, It has about 15,000 residents with many more winter visitors every year.

I was recently surprised to find out the extent of the genealogical resources in my own local Maricopa County Public Library. The Library has a special online eResource Center specifically for genealogy. You have to have a library card to use the service, but it has Ancestry.com Library Edition for use in the library, Gale Genealogy Connect, Heritage Quest and ProQuest Obituaries.

The Gale Genealogy Connect site has hundreds of digitized genealogy reference books free through the library. Heritage Quest has more and ProQuest Obituaries lists obituaries going back to 1868 in selected newspapers.

Many local libraries have special collections of local and family history resources. You will never know unless you search the catalog or ask at the library.

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