These resources are great jumping-off points for new or seasoned genealogists. Read our Genealogy guide for more tips on how to do genealogy research.
Ancestry Library Edition In-library only
This is the library version of Ancestry.com. It allows you to search billions of genealogy records from the U.S. and around the world in a single search. View tutorial
Full text from 1985 to the present. Includes obituaries.
This digitized, full text version of the newspaper includes photographs, ads and obituaries from 1849–1992.
Des Plaines Local Newspapers In-library only
This collection brings together issues of several local newspapers dating from 1939 to the present. The oldest newspapers were badly damaged by water and mold and are preserved here for historical research.
An online collection of photographs, postcards, letters and more all detailing Des Plaines' rich history. A great tool for doing historical and genealogical research.
Des Plaines Telephone Directories In-library only
This collection brings together telephone directories from Des Plaines and the surrounding communities. The directories are a great tool for doing genealogical and historical research.
Convenient access to US military records, including the stories, photos, and personal documents of the men and women who served. Historical documents like the National Archives Holocaust Records are also included. A useful tool for historians, genealogists, researchers, military enthusiasts, veterans and their families and teachers.
Search hundreds of national and international newspapers including the Chicago Tribune, the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and Financial Times at the same time.
Explore local histories, mine census data and search thousands of other records to find your ancestors and build your family tree.
Birth, death and marriage records from 48 countries, the complete US and UK censuses, immigration, military and tombstone records and more than 1.5 billion family tree profiles. More than 5 million records are added each day.
New York Times digitized cover to cover from 1851 to 2012.
Obituaries from Atlanta Constitution (1868-1922), Boston Globe (1872-1922), Chicago Defender (1921-1975), Chicago Tribune (1852-1984), Los Angeles Times (1881-1984), New York Times (1851-1994) and Washington Post (1877-1950).
With more than 41,000 e-books chosen specifically for public libraries, this general reference collection features titles for both adults and juveniles, as well as best-selling and highly-recommended titles from industry leading publishers.