Fair Warning! Genealogy can be addictive!

With the exception of Ancestry Library Edition, you can also search our databases from home with your Des Plaines Library card.

If you’re new to genealogy or already an expert, we have resources you can use.

Here are the top three:

Ancestry Library Edition - in library only

This is the largest and most popular database we subscribe to for genealogy. You’ve probably seen commercials for on TV - this is the library version and it’s almost the same. It’s also free and super easy to use – just enter the name of your ancestor and Ancestry will search millions of records to find you more information and lead you to other ancestors that maybe you didn’t know you had. Before you know it you’ll be on your way to building a family tree that you can share with your relatives.  

World Vital Records

You can get this database from home with a DPPL card. It contains millions or records including census records, vital records, immigration records and voter lists, to name just a few.

Heritage Quest

This is a fascinating resource for historians as well as genealogists. It contains records from the American Revolution and the Civil War. It also includes family and local histories.

Obituaries are also essential when doing genealogy research. We have several sources:

America’s Obituaries & Death Notices

This is a collection of obituaries from across the U.S. Obituaries from the Chicago Tribune are in the Historical Chicago Tribune or the current Chicago Tribune.

For more resources check out our Genealogy Page and this handy brochure.

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