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HeritageQuest Online »
HeritageQuest contains scanned images of all available U.S. census schedules (1790-1930); over 25,000 scanned books on family and local history; PERSI, an index to magazine articles in the field of family and local history; images of selected records from Revolutionary War pension and bounty-land-warrant application files; images of the registers of the Freedman's Savings and Trust Company; and selected Congressional documents and reports from the American State Papers and U.S. Serial Set.
Note that a Chicago Public Library card is required to use this resource unless using a Chicago Public Library computer.
Unless otherwise noted, these resources are available on all Chicago Public Library computers or on non-Library computers with your Chicago Public Library card.
Ancestry Library Edition »
Search the U.S. and U.K. censuses, the Social Security Death Index, World War I Draft Registration Cards, Civil War Service Records, Immigration Records, and thousands more sources for genealogical research.
Available only on Chicago Public Library computers.
Chicago Tribune Historical Archive »
Search the complete content, including classified ads and death notices, of the Chicago Tribune from 1849 through 1988. To search recent articles, use Chicago Tribune (1985-present).
Chicago Defender Historical Archive »
Search the complete text of this nationally prominent African American newspaper from 1910 to 1975. To search articles from 1999 to the present, use Black Newspapers or Illinois Newsstand.
Search in the Library
Featured CPL Collections and Programs
- Avalon Branch »
The Avalon Branch on Chicago's southeast side has an extensive collection of African American genealogy materials.
- Beverly Branch »
The Beverly Branch's Jule Conroy Irish Heritage Collection offers many materials for Irish genealogical research.
- General Information Services Division »
The General Information Services Division at the Harold Washington Library Center has passenger lists, city directories, military records and pension records.
- Social Science and History Department »
The Social Science and History Department at the Harold Washington Library Center features a variety of books on genealogy, including titles on ethnic resources, Chicago and county histories, and beginning to advanced genealogical research.
- Sulzer Regional Library »
The North Side Neighborhood History Collection holds materials of interest to persons researching ancestors who lived on Chicago's North Side, and the Newspapers and Magazines Department holds microfilm of Chicago city directories and twentieth-century Chicago neighborhood papers.
- Vivian G. Harsh Research Collection of Afro-American History and Literature »
The Harsh Collection at the Woodson Regional Library has numerous sources for the study of African American genealogy.
- Genealogy at the Newberry Library »
Located on Chicago's Near North Side, the Newberry Library is recognized nationwide for its collections in local and family history.
- NARA Great Lakes Region »
Find out about the sources for genealogical research housed at the three Great Lakes facilities of the National Archives, including the facility in Chicago.
- Genealogical Research in the Illinois State Archives »
This guide will walk you through the use of the Archives' wide variety of sources for genealogical research, including use of the Archives' many online indexes.
- RootsWeb.com »
RootsWeb.com is a collection of free resources, including the Social Security Death Index, from Ancestry, Inc.
- Where to Write for Vital Records »
This page, sponsored by the National Center for Health Statistics, tells you where to send (and how much to pay) for birth, death, marriage, and divorce certificates in every state.
- Cyndi's List of Genealogy Sites on the Internet »
Cyndi's List is the best-known guide to sites for genealogical research on the Internet.