Genealogy & Family History

Find your roots at the Library

Are you interested in your family tree or looking for information from early newspapers and records?  The Library is the place to begin your search for family records, birth and death announcements, or information on early Oklahoma City and surrounding areas.

 

Getting started is simple!

The Metropolitan Library System has a variety of genealogical resources, including a print materials located at the Ronald J. Norick Downtown Library, online resources and a team of knowledgeable librarians. Our collections include family histories, census records, indexes, newspapers, state history, yearbooks and more.

Download Getting Started Guide

 

Need Help?

Our Special Collections department can provide research assistance and guidance as well as answer specific questions along your genealogy journey. Questions can be sent online or asked over the phone at (405) 606-3859.

 

Genealogy Resources

 

Newspapers

Newspapers can be a valuable resource in your genealogical research. Local newspapers may contain information such as birth, marriage, and death announcements as well as other aspects of your relative’s daily life. You may find that your relative was involved in local business or other local news. If there was not a newspaper in their town, be sure to check surrounding towns. Newspapers accessible through the library’s website include:

 

Research Guides

Blogs

GENEALOGY ONE-ON-ONE TUTORIALS

Looking for clues as to your ancestry? Or do you have specific questions on how to get started with your genealogy research?  The Metropolitan Library System is hosting one-on-one sessions to provide the support and guidance needed for specific genealogy research needs.

“We started...

Instructional Genealogy Books and Videos

If you are looking to begin your research on your family history, general research books and instructional videos are a great place to get started. The library has a variety of resources available to you, and most of these titles are available from home. To Learn more about the library's genealog...

Events

Call for Vintage Quilts

March 5, 2022
11:00am - 3:00pm
Ralph Ellison Library
Library Branch: Ralph Ellison Library
Room: Meeting Room B (Ralph Ellison)
Age Group: Adults
Program Type: Arts & Crafts, DIY & Hobbies
Event Description:
Help us document and photograph these pieces of history! Bring your vintage (pre-1910) family quilts to the library to have them professionally photographed and have information about them preserved. We’ll gather oral history and details&nb...
View More Events

Databases

A B C E F G H I J L M N O P R S T U V W

Access Newspaper Archive

Search tens of millions of U.S. and international newspapers whose coverage goes back more than 400 years.

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African American Heritage

Search historical records for African Americans that include the Federal Census, Marriage and Cohabitation Records, Military Draft and Service Records, Registers of Slaves and Free(d) Persons of Color, Freedman's Bank, and more.

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African American Newspapers (1827-1998)

Search hundreds of African American newspapers from across the United States published during the 19th and 20th centuries.

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America's GenealogyBank

Search over 300 years of historical U.S. newspapers, books, pamphlets, local histories, military records, funeral sermons, land grants, birth and marriage records, and more.

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America's Historical Newspapers

This is a searchable collection of early American newspapers from 1690-1999.

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Ancestry.com

Search billions of historical records covering hundreds of years of family trees, photographs, census records, birth, marriage and death records, military records, city directories, immigration and travel records, newspapers, and more.

 

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Chicago Defender (1905-1975)

Provides full-text archives to the country’s premier African American newspaper, the Chicago Defender (1905-1975).

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Fold3

Provides access to historic U.S. military records, including the stories, photos and personal documents of the men and women who served. You can also search archives for African Americans, Native Americans and the U.S. Bureau of Investigation case files, historical newspapers, historical documents, U.S. Census records, U.S. naturalization records, and city directories.

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HeritageHub

Explore your family history with the premier collection of U.S. obituaries and death notices for in-depth genealogical research from 1704 to today. HeritageHub helps you easily identify relatives, uncover new information and potentially unknown family members. Includes deep coverage from all 50 states, hard-to-find content from the mid 1900’s, and original obituary images.

Looking for America's Obituaries & Death Notices? Try this database instead!

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HeritageQuest Online

Contains U.S. Federal Census images (1790-1940), map guide to the Federal Censuses (1790-1920), U.S. Indian Census Rolls (1885-1940), slave schedules for the 1850 and 1860 U.S. Federal Census, genealogy and local history books, city directories, pension and bounty land warrant applications from the Revolutionary War, Freedman's Bank Records (1865-1874), and the U.S. Serials Set (1789-present) which records the memorials, petitions and private relief actions made to the U.S. Congress.

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Historical Newspapers

Provides full-text access to the archives of Chicago Defender (1909-1975), St. Louis Post Dispatch (1874-1922), The Jewish Exponent (1887-1990), Los Angeles Times (1881-1994), The New York Times (1851-2014), and The Washington Post (1877-2001).

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HistoryGeo

HistoryGeo allows you to search antique maps and atlases and it displays original landowners of the continental United States according to state and federal records. HistoryGeo provides a single, interactive map containing over 9 million landowners across 21 states. This will be an invaluable tool for your historical and genealogical research.

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Jewish Exponent

Provides full-text access to the archives of The Jewish Exponent (1887-1990).

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MyHeritage

MyHeritage Library Edition includes birth, death, and marriage records from 48 countries, the complete U.S. and U.K. censuses, immigration, military, and tombstone records and more than 3 billion family tree profiles.

Available at the library or remotely.

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Newspapers.com Library Edition

Dating from the early 1700s into the 2000s, Newspapers.com Library Edition contains full runs and portions of runs of well-known, regional and state titles to small local newspapers in the United States and other countries. This is a great resource for genealogists looking for information on their family history.

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OK2Explore

Ok2Explore is a free searchable index of births and deaths that occurred in the state of Oklahoma. Included is limited information on births occurring more than 20 years ago and deaths occurring more than 5 years ago. You may search the index using any combination of the subject’s name, date of event (birth or death), county of event, and sex.

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Oklahoma Newspapers

Provides full-text access to dozens of newspapers across Oklahoma. Includes full-text and image editions of The Oklahoman and Tulsa World.

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Oklahoman Digital Archives (1901-present)

This database contains full-color, digital copies of The Oklahoman newspaper, including today's edition. Search the entire archives of The Oklahoman or search individual issues. You can browse the newspapers by date or search by keyword across articles, advertisements and photo captions. Due to the large size of the archive, searches will need to be limited with a date range in order to return results. 

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USA.Gov

This is the U.S. government's official web portal, designed to makes it easy for the public to get U.S. government information and services on the web. Find information about benefits, grants and loans, jobs, training and education, passports and travel, immigration, citizenship and international travel, mortgages, housing and family, and more

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Collections

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Genealogy

Whether you are just beginning your search or you have you consier yourself a super-sleuth, we've got resources to help you on your genealogy journey.

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