Contact a Librarian

Call: 314-994-3300 ext. 2070
Email: scollections@slcl.org
Visit us at:
1640 S. Lindbergh Blvd.
St. Louis, MO 63131

Special Collections Department Services

Lookups

The Special Collections Department will be happy to look up and send copies of records found in indexed sources.

  • Submit look up requests by email to genealogy@slcl.org.
  • You must allow the department to complete a current request before submitting another.
  • Electronic scans will be returned by email at no charge.
  • Paper copies will be returned for a $1 handling fee plus the cost of copies.
  • Requests from abroad will be charged exact postage.
  • An invoice will be included with the mailing.
Staff will make photocopies of printed material only if source is indexed or an exact citation is submitted. Designate a specific source. Examples of acceptable requests follow:
  • Check the book "Genealogical Abstracts Of Revolutionary War Pension Files" abstracted by Virgil D. White. Photocopy a listing for John Cessna.
  • Please photocopy the article entitled "Index to the Marriage Records of the First Congregational Church in New Orleans" Louisiana Genealogical Register, vol. 21, October 1982.
  • Look in the index of "County of Christian, Kentucky" by William Henry Perrin. Please copy any reference in the index to the surname DeWitt.
  • Does St. Louis County Library have this particular book? (Provide the exact title.)
  • What is the address of the National Genealogical Society?
  • Does St. Louis County Library have this family history in your collection? (Provide the exact title.)

Examples of unacceptable questions because they are not specific follow:

  • Find a cemetery listing for John Hinch.
  • Do any books on St. Louis mention Zoe Aubuchon?
  • When did John Durant die?

The library is obligated to follow U.S. copyright laws. Please review the library's copyright notice below.

Additional guidelines

Newspaper obituaries, newspaper articles and city directories on microfilm

  • Obituary sources include St. Louis Post-Dispatch, St. Louis Globe-Democrat, St. Louis Republic, Star-Times and Westliche Post (German language). See the newspaper holdings list for date coverage.
  • Obituary requests must include a death date or exact citation.
  • Newspaper article requests must include an exact citation.
  • Limit of 3 searches per mailing.
  • City directories in paper format cannot be photocopied because of fragility.

The following newspapers indexes are available on the St. Louis County Library website:

An index to obituaries in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch is available on the website of the St. Louis (City) Public Library.

Books

  • Limit of three searches per mailing.
  • The book must be indexed unless an exact citation is submitted.
  • Newsletters and magazines (quarterlies)
  • Limit of one request per mailing.
  • Limit of 30 pages copied from one source.
  • An entire quarterly or book cannot be copied.
  • No more than one article can be copied from a single issue.
  • Articles can also be obtained through interlibrary loan. Contact your local library.

Additional research assistance

Additional research help may be available from the St. Louis Genealogical Society. The society also maintains a list of researchers for hire. Contact the society directly:

St. Louis Genealogical Society
4 Sunnen Drive, Suite 140
St. Louis, MO 63143-3814
314-647-8547
office@stlgs.org

Copyright notice

The copyright law of the United States (Title 17, United States Code) governs the making of photocopies or other reproductions of copyrighted material. Under certain conditions specified in the law, libraries and archives are authorized to furnish a photocopy or other reproduction. One specified condition is that the photocopy or reproduction is not to be "used for any purpose other than private study, scholarship, or research." If a user makes a request or later uses a photocopy or reproduction for purposes in excess of "fair use," that user may be liable for copyright infringement. In addition, copyright law limits photocopies of journal material to one article per issue and book-length material to one section or chapter or a limit of 30 pages. Journal articles less than five years old are also more restricted than older material. This institution reserves the right to refuse to accept a copying order if, in its judgment, fulfillment of the order would violate the copyright law.

Family History Library Microfilm Loans

The Special Collections Department is an authorized Family Search Center of the Family History Library (FHL) in Salt Lake City, making more than two million rolls of microfilm containing genealogical records available to borrow and view at St. Louis County Library. A library card is not required.

The loan program includes microfilm and microfiche only. Books in paper format in the Family History Library's collection cannot be borrowed. Available microfilm/microfiche can be searched using the online Family History Library catalog.

FHL has implemented an online ordering system. For more information about ordering film and to set up an account, visit the FamilySearch.org website or contact the Special Collections Department at 314-994-3300, ext. 2070 or scollections@slcl.org.

Interlibrary Loans from the Collection

In November 2001, the National Genealogical Society (NGS) moved most of their 98 year old circulating collection from the NGS headquarters at Glebe House in Arlington, Virginia, to the Special Collections Department of St. Louis County Library (SLCL) in St. Louis, Missouri. The collection consists of approximately 20,000+ books. Previously loaned only to NGS members, the National Genealogical Society Book Loan Collection is now available to the general public through Interlibrary Loan via their local library.

Instructions to customers:

  • The St. Louis County Library catalog may be searched online.
  • Books that have call numbers starting with "R" (R929.3) are reference and do not circulate. These books are not part of the NGS collection.
  • Books that have call numbers without "R" (i.e. 929.3 or Q 929.3) do circulate.
  • To borrow a book not available at your own local library, contact your local library's interlibrary loan department. Please limit requests to two books at a time.

Instructions to librarians

ILL requests may be submitted via one of the following:

  • OCLC -- Our symbol is ZAE.
  • ALA forms using regular mail
  • The Special Collections Department may be contacted at scollections@slcl.org. Please include your library's mailing address, phone number and contact person.
  • The department will lend more than two books at a time to the borrowing library but asks that the policy of two books per patron be followed. Please contact the department via email at scollections@slcl.org with questions or problems.
  • St. Louis County Library will copy up to 30 pages from one item, which may be preferable to some patrons.

Donating Books to the Collection

Authors, compilers, or translators wanting to place their genealogical publications in a circulating collection might want to consider this collection as a repository for their work. Also, libraries with duplicate copies of genealogical books that need a good home may donate them to this collection. Send donations to the following address:

     NGS Collection
     St. Louis County Library
     1640 South Lindbergh Blvd.
     St. Louis, MO 63131-3598

Please remember to include a note giving your address so an acknowledgement for the donation can be sent.

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