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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.

Research Databases


  • 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