Genealogy & Local History
Located on the lower level of the library, the Helen Osma Local History Collection houses historical materials relating to Lawrence and Douglas County, as well as resources for genealogical research. If you need help using these materials or getting started with your research, stop by the Reference Desk, call 785-843-1178, email the reference staff, or open a live chat session.
- Ancestry Library Edition – Accessible only at library computers.
- Heritage Quest – Genealogical resource to search federal census records (1790-1930), family and local histories, and more. Accessible at library computers and remotely via IP location recognition or with a Kansas Library Card.
- Sanborn Maps (1867 – 1970) – Accessible at library computers and remotely (library card number required for remote log in).
- Searchable Cemetery Records for Lawrence, KS – Available via the City of Lawrence website.
- Kansas Collection – Lawrence Public Library’s collection of books dealing specifically with Lawrence and Douglas County history and citizens. These do not circulate, but we may have copies available to check out in our regular collection.
- Census records for Douglas County, Kansas, and “Five Civilized Tribes in Indian Territory”
- Lawrence and area newspapers from 1854-present
- Marriage records, 1854-1992 with Index
Kansas Vertical File
- Newspaper clippings about the history of Lawrence and Douglas County, with an index (link)
Research Aids & Indexes
- Index to Helen Osma Local History Collection Resources
- Genealogy Resources in The Helen Osma Collection
- Searching the History of a Home in Douglas County
- Lawrence/Douglas County, Kansas: African American Oral History Interviews
- Summary of Local Records Locations
- Differences between Ancestry Library Edition and Heritage Quest databases
- Quantrill’s Raid resources
- Frequently Asked Questions