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
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 HERE or asked over the phone at (405) 606-3859.
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:
- Access Newspaper Archive
- African American Newspapers
- Historical Newspapers
- Jewish Exponent
- Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers
- Chicago Defender
- America's Historical Newspapers
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...
Getting started in your genealogical research can be daunting. Maybe you have tried before, but you hit a wall and lost steam, maybe you feel overwhelmed by the amount of information to organize or maybe you just don’t know what resources are available and how to use them. Wherever you may b...
Looking for clues as to your ancestry? Come put our genealogical databases and print resources through their paces to learn about the places and faces of your family's past. Our resident Genealogical genius will give you the tools which you need to branch out your family tree for free.
A to Z Maps Online
Provides access to over 100,000 various types of maps for the U.S., world countries and continents. A to Z Maps Online contains a large number of specialized maps like antique maps, bathymetric and fishing maps, climate change maps, environmental maps, geography and geology maps, Holy Land maps, tree and bird distribution maps, and more. It also contains flags from world countries and international organizations.
A to Z the USA
This database contains state, county and city information for all U.S. states and territories. It lists facts and statistics about arts and culture, climate and weather, demographics, flags and seals, government and politics, history, maps, photos, and more.
Access Newspaper Archive
Search tens of millions of U.S. and international newspapers whose coverage goes back more than 400 years.
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.
African American Newspapers (1827-1998)
Search hundreds of African American newspapers from across the United States published during the 19th and 20th centuries.
African-American History Online
Covers more than 500 years of African-American history using biographies, primary sources, images, videos, timelines, maps, and charts.
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.
America's Historical Newspapers
This is a searchable collection of early American newspapers from 1690-1999.
America's Obituaries and Death Notices
The largest and most comprehensive collection of newspaper obituaries and death notices. Extensive editorial review of all newspaper sections ensures a thorough selection of obituaries for easy access. An easy-to-use interface allows searching by name, date range, or text such as institutional name, social affiliation(s), geographic location(s), philanthropic activities, etc.
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.
In library use only.
Chicago Defender (1905-1975)
Provides full-text archives to the country’s premier African American newspaper, the Chicago Defender (1905-1975).
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.
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.
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).
HistoryGeo.com 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.
In library use only.
Provides full-text access to the archives of The Jewish Exponent (1887-1990).
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.
Provides full-text access to dozens of newspapers across Oklahoma.
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.
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