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Genealogy Resources



  •  Ancestry Library Edition

    (Availability: public computers in BCPL Libraries)

    Genealogy research product that provides access to more than 2 billion names, more than 3,000 databases, primary source documents and images and a variety of genealogical research features, with new resources added daily



  • Death Indexes and Records

    A directory of online death indexes listed by state and county, including death records, death certificate indexes, death notices and registers, obituaries, probate indexes, and cemetery and burial records, as well as information about searching the Social Security Death Index



  • FamilySearch Internet Genealogy Service

    The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has a search engine to perhaps the largest collections of names, as well as provides other genealogy information and sites


  • Genealogy Reference

    Links to sites for genealogy research including Cyndi's List, USGenWeb, and other web resources, as well as print resources and subscription services.


  • Genealogy Subject Guide

    Links to genealogy resources compiled by the Enoch Pratt Free Library/State Library Resource Center


  • Genealogy How To Guides

    Index of How to Guides for genealogy research, provided by the Enoch Pratt Free Library/State Library Resource Center


  • GenSoftReviews

    Guide to computer programs available for genealogy study- also online newsgroups, mail lists and publications. Includes user ratings and  reviews



  • HeritageQuest

    (Availability: Public PCs in BCPL Libraries or from elsewhere with a valid library card from a Maryland public library through Sailor) The HeritageQuest Collection includes federal census records, source documents, and indexes. Rich with demographic and genealogical detail, the collection contains personal data such as education, place of birth, language, occupation, veteran status. Includes images.



  • JewishGen

    Guide to Jewish genealogical research


  • Maryland City Directories

    A guide to print and digital Maryland City Directories available in the Special Collections at the University of Maryland. Includes a complete list of Baltimore City Directories and those that are digitized.





Ancestry Library Edition Database


Heritage Quest Database




Image of book cover for In Search of Our Roots


Image of book cover for Tracing Your Family History



Image of book cover for The Everything Guide to Online Genealogy

African American Genealogy Resources




  • African American Genealogy: How -To Guide

    by the African American Department of the Enoch Pratt Free Library, Baltimore Maryland.
    Tells you how to get started in researching your family's genealogy and the tools available online and at the Enoch Pratt Free Library, which is the Maryland State Library and serves all Maryland residents.


  • African American Genealogy Mailing List

    A moderated mailing list for researchers

    Dedicated to rediscovering and sharing records that document the names and lives of former slaves, freed persons, and their descendants.

  • Africana Heritage Project

    sponsored by the Africana Studies Department, University of South Florida


  • AfriGeneas

    Devoted to African American genealogy. Also an African ancestry research community featuring a mail list, message boards, and daily and weekly genealogy chats.


  • Beneath the Underground Database

    by Maryland State Archive. 

    Enter the surname of a family member into the database using the general search page, or limit the search to a more specific category such as only Runaway Ads or Census Population records. The Maryland State Archives houses the jail records from Baltimore City and County from 1827-1899. The Baltimore County docket from 1827-1832 lists persons arrested for an assortment of crimes, but for the purpose of this project, only runaway slaves were recorded.

  • Freedman's Bureau 1865 to1872

    provided by National Archives

    In the years following the Civil War, the Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands provided assistance to tens of thousands of former slaves and impoverished whites in the Southern states and the District of Columbia. Their records are available on microfilm through the National Archives.


  • Freedman's Bureau Online

    from Freedman's

    Publishes transcriptions of the records of the Bureau, including Freedmen's marriage certificates, reports of outrages against freed slaves, and labor records.


  • Genealogy Research Databases

    provided by Baltimore County Public Library

    Find digital images of federal census records, and primary source documents, and indexes. Rich with demographic and genealogical detail. All are available on public computers in our libraries and some from home with a valid library card registered with Baltimore County Public Library.


  • Starting Your Own Genealogy Research

    by the Maryland Department of Enoch Pratt Free Library, Baltimore, Maryland
    A guide to the many genealogy resources available in the Maryland Department on families that lived in Maryland.

  • Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade Database
    Sponsored by Emory University

    Look for particular voyages in this database of documented slaving expeditions. Also an African Names database of Africans aboard slave ships, using name, age, gender, origin, and place of embarkation.


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BCPL has microfilm of the Baltimore Sun from January 1960 to the present and a few other historic newspapers at the Towson Branch. Customers are welcome to use the microfilm reader to search for obituaries. For more information about BCPS microfilm holdings, see our Special Collections page. The Full Display button in our catalog listing shows the dates covered in our Microfilm collections. Customers can also email a request for an obituary lookup through our Ask a Question service, but must provide the exact date of death (day, month, and year). We are able to search 5 days before and after the date supplied. BCPL cannot accommodate obituary requests with only a month and year of death.


    Search obituaries from more than 650 newspapers in the U.S., Canada, and the U.K. Search by name, obituary keyword, or newspaper.


  • Maryland Obituaries at Rootsweb

    Extracts and copies of obituaries and death notices from Baltimore area newspapers, including Anne Arundel County, Baltimore County, and Howard County.


  • Maryland Obituaries Search

    Guide to Maryland obituary records, including searching of online obituary records and Maryland historical documents and links to recommended Maryland genealogy records.


  • Newspaper Research Databases

    provided by Baltimore County Public Library

    Search for full text articles and obituaries in several current and historic newspapers, including the Baltimore Sun and the Baltimore Afro-American Newspaper: 1893 - 1988. All are available on public computers in our libraries and some from home with a valid library card registered with Baltimore County Public Library.

  • Obits

    Collection of newspaper obituaries and death notices, indexed by name of deceased person, with searchable text, allowing searching by place of residence, occupation, etc.

Image of book cover for Book of Obituaries

Vital Records


  • Vital Statistics Administration

    Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene provides certified copies of birth, death, and marriage certificates and related information



  • United States Vital Records Information

    Contacts for all states and territories with links to individual countries and cities; links to foreign countries; fee information and dates of records held






Revised: November 30, 2015