Friday, January 4, 2008

Monroe County Public Library

For those of you that have not visited one of my blogs before, I make a practice on Fridays to profile a library or facility of genealogical interest in the area that I am speaking. The intent is to educate on resources that are available so they can be used.

The library I have chosen of the first profile is the Monroe County Public Library in Monroe, MI. For anyone doing research on Monroe County ancestors or may have had a family spend some time in the county the library is a excellent place to start.

A great deal of the written collection in the library deals with local history, but also has a extensive collection related to Canadian history. This area during the early period was settled heavily by both English and French Canadians. For many doing research in the county the search continues in Canada instead of Ohio. The library has a good collection of historical maps and atlases.

Extensive lists of cemeteries exist in the collection. This becomes a more important tool in doing research, because of the rapid reduction in quality of many cemetery stones due to weather and vandalism.

Another unique item in the collection is the Marion Child's interviews. Marion back in the fifties and early sixties interviewed older residence of the county about their lives and history. Another collection of oral histories was conducted by Monroe Community College and includes over 200 oral histories. This provides a unique window in our ancestors past. Collections like this are unique and are very few in number.

The library also includes microfilm of all the major newspapers in the county dating back to the 1830's. A very valuable asset. Naturalization and church records are also in the collection.

When doing research on ancestors be sure to check out the Monroe County Library which is located at the main library in Monroe.