• All Wichita Public Library locations will close at 5 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 21 and remain closed all day on Thursday, Nov. 22 and Friday, Nov. 23.

Genealogy

Location and Hours

With more than 25,000 volumes, Wichita Public Library's genealogy collection is one of the largest in the region. It is located in the Edward & Elizabeth Burns Historical Research Pavilion on the second floor of the Advanced Learning Library.

Our Collections

Our collections include:

  • Census records on microfilm, related indexes, and some Soundex rolls
  • Family histories
  • Books containing indexes to vital records (births, marriages, and deaths), probate records, immigration lists, land records, tax lists, cemetery records, church records, etc.
  • State, county, and town histories
  • Military histories and pension lists
  • Cultural and ethnic group histories
  • Materials for genealogical research in the United States only
  • An emphasis on states that have had a heavy emigration to Kansas, especially New England and Midwestern states

The Kansas Reference Collection contains many books of interest to genealogists. The history and biography sections are the most likely to be helpful to genealogists.

Using the Collections

  • Genealogy collection books can be found in the Library's online catalog
  • Microfilm rolls of Kansas newspapers that the library does not own may be interlibrary loaned from the Kansas State Historical Society
  • Through an agreement with FamilySearch, researchers are able to access restricted digital collections not available from home
  • Patrons researching Kansas ancestors should check both the Genealogy Collection and the Kansas Reference Collection
  • Some Genealogy, Kansas Reference or Local History books may not be photocopied due to their age and condition. Ask the librarian for permission to photocopy.
  • All Genealogy, Kansas Reference and Local History Collection items are reference materials and do not circulate. Some duplicate items exist in the general circulating collections.
  • Copies from microfilm or microfiche are $0.25 each
  • There are two digital microfilm reader/scanner machines that can scan microfilm into digital formats such as JPG and PDF. You can then save or email these files at no cost.

Research Assistance

A limited amount of research may be possible via email and mail queries.

Typical research requests include:

  • Obituaries
  • Brief local history information on people, buildings, companies, etc.
  • Date and fact verification for Wichita and Kansas history

Library staff do not provide census research.

A fee of $5 per half-hour for research will be charged, with a one-hour limit of research time spent per inquiry. Photocopies are an additional $0.25 each. Customers will be billed regardless of results. Invoices will be sent out with any results found; timely payment is appreciated.

Customers are requested to be as thorough as possible when writing a request; exact dates, names, and other details are almost always necessary to find information. These requests will be filled as staff time is available.

Send email queries to: reference@wichitalibrary.org

Send mail queries to:
Wichita Public Library
Attn. Mail Research
711 W. 2nd
Wichita, KS 67203

The library prefers that you include a business-size self-addressed, stamped envelope with your request.

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