Genealogy Research

Ancestry Library Edition

This version of the consumer Ancestry product is available free of charge but only on site at an OWWL Library

The URL is https://www.ancestrylibrary.com/. When accessed from a library you will go directly to the Ancestry search. 

Library visitors can use their own internet-connected devices (laptops, tablets, etc.) at the library, or use library computers. We recommend that visitors using library computers bring their own flash drives.

Family Search

This free genealogy research service is tied to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, but does not involve any sort of proselytism. The records and contents are very similar to Ancestry, but it is available for free, anywhere you have internet access. The URL is: https://familysearch.org/ 

Historic Newspapers

The Pioneer Library System and individual libraries have been working to digitize local historic newspapers and make them available online. They are currently distributed across several repositories.

Check out our index of OWWL area historical newspapers to see a list of regional publications with links to digital content, links to OWWL catalog records, and links to information about the titles from the Library of Congress.

Library repositories

State repositories

  • New York State Historic Newspapers - this repository includes newspapers from across NYS, including papers contributed by Geneva Public Library, Macedon Public Library, Newark Public Library, and Walworth-Seely Public Library

National repositories

  • Chronicling America - this repository includes newspapers from across the United States; the NYS papers are mainly from New York City

Other online repositories

Local Resources

Many of our OWWL libraries have extensive local history resources linked to their library webpages. Library website URLs, as well as hours, contact information, and directions are available from our libraries directory page: https://owwl.org/libraries