Enlightening and Inspiring Generations with Generations of Ideas

The public library building, in my view, is just a little lower than the church, the cathedral, the temple, the synagogue and the mosque.  Within those walls and along those stacks, I have found security and assurance.

Dr. Maya Angelou
to the LaSalle Public Library on the occasion of the Library's Centennial Celebration, 2007

Genealogy & Local History

The Alwin C. Carus Genealogy and Local History Room is located on the second level of the library.  Materials in this collection do not circulate.  Some of the materials in this collection include city directories dating back to 1858, City of LaSalle history, year books for LaSalle Peru Township High School and St. Bede Academy, LaSalle County history, LaSalle newspaper on microfilm from 1906 to 2003 and on CD from 2004 to present, census information in hardback and microfilm, Sanborn Fire Insurance Maps for the City of LaSalle, history and information on surrounding towns, Starved Rock State Park, Illinois & Michigan Canal, Paul Carus books, TickTalk Magazines, and the Westclox Clock Collection generously donated by Jim and Catherine Whitaker of Mark, Illinois. 

Individuals may request the use of the room at the service desk on the second floor.  Patrons may bring paper and pencil into the room, however, all other items such as coats, purses, backpacks, etc. will be locked in a cabinet behind the service desk.  Other genealogy and local history sources may be found at the LaSalle County Historical Society and the LaSalle County Genealogy Guild as well as other public libraries in the area.

The LaSalle Public Library provides obituary searches for a fee of $5.00 per search.  Simply provide a written request containing a specific date or date range, a self-addressed stamped envelope, and payment to the library.  For more information, pleace call (815) 223-2341.

Image result for ancestry Please note that this website is only  accessible from computers located at the  LaSalle Public Library.

 Ancestry - Library Edition has unparalleled  coverage of the United States and the United Kingdom, including census, vital, church, court, and immigration records, as well as record collections from Canada and other areas. This collection of more than 4,000 databases and two billion names is essential to having a broad genealogy collection.  The Ancestry Library Edition collection has approximately 4,000 databases including key collections such as U.S. Federal Census images and indexes from 1790 to 1930; the Map Center containing more than 1,000 historical maps; American Genealogical Biographical Index (over 200 volumes); Daughters of the American Revolution Lineage (over 150 volumes); The Great Migration Begins: Immigrants to New England, 1620-1630Social Security Death Index (updated monthly); WWI Draft Registration CardsFederal Slave Narratives; and a strong Civil War collection.  

This database was made possible through the Alwin C. Carus Trust.

Image result for heritage quest

 When accessing this database from  home, you will need to have your LaSalle Library  Card Barcode to log in.

 HeritageQuest Online includes all of the images, and  extensive indexing, from the 1790 - 1930 U.S. federal  censuses. It offers more than 20,000 book titles, including nearly 8,000 family histories and over 12,000 local histories. Additionally, there are more than 250 primary-source documents such as tax lists, city directories, probate records, and more.  Researchers can use HeritageQuest Online to find their ancestors, trace their paths across America , and learn what life was like in the areas where they settled.  This database was made possible through the Alwin C. Carus Trust.

Other Genealogy Links

Family Search

Cyndi's List of Genealogy Sites on the Internet

Genealogy and Family History Research in Illinois

Illinois State Archives

Illinois Historic Preservation Agency

Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library

LaSalle County Genealogy Guild

U.S. GenWeb

Illinois Genealogy Resources

Family History Library Catalog

Illinois Vital Records