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Where to Do Research in the Kansas City Metro Area

Broken down into categories: Basics, Libraries, Archives, Genealogical Societies and Churches

Kansas City is fortunate to have many genealogical research facilities in the area. These include:

  • National Archives Central Plains branch on Bannister
  • Mid-Continent Public, particularly the North Independence branch
  • Kansas City Public, particularly the main branch downtown
  • seven LDS Family Centers on both sides of the state line
  • near to the state facilities in both capitols of Topeka and Jefferson City

Research Facility Basics

When going to a library, archives, court house, town hall or any other facility housing genealogical records do the following before arriving:

  • Know what records are available at the facility – types, date ranges, etc.
  • Know if any costs are required, including photocopying and if a membership is necessary
  • Know the hours that the facility and its materials are available to the public
  • Know whether the library has an “open stack” or “closed stack” policy for obtaining books
  • Bring any reference materials you may need while at the facility
  • Bring a detailed list of what you are expecting to find, including all necessary documentation
  • Bring a wish list of what you would like to find
  • Bring any personal items you might need: reading glasses, magnifying glass, paper clips, stapler, folders, etc.

Libraries

     Many libraries allow you to do research on their web sites.

State

County/City

Archives

State

County/City

County archives – they usually have such records as: taxes, property ownership, real estate transactions.

Genealogical Societies

     Their web sites usually offer limited but good information, even for non-members.

National

  • Join national societies and get their publications
  • For links to many U.S. genealogical societies see the web site www.obitlinkspage.com/hs/
  • New England Historic Genealogical Society (NEHGS), 101 Newbury Street, Boston, MA, 02116, annual membership is $75 www.americanancestors.org (growing collection of material available online for members with one master index for all)
  • National Genealogical Society (NGS), 4527 17th Street North, Arlington, VA 22207-2399, annual membership $50, www.ngsgenealogy.org
  • Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR), Washington, D.C., www.dar.org/natsociety. KC Public has many DAR books
  • Sons of the American Revolution (SAR), Louisville, KY, $35/year, www.sar.org
  • The American Genealogist (TAG) (a leading genealogical publication) www.americangenealogist.com/, $30 for 1 year or $56 for two years or $80 for 3 years.
    (Kansas City Public Library main branch has the complete collection)

State

  • Missouri State Genealogical Association, P.O. Box 833, Columbia, MO 65205-0833, (phone number not known), www.mosga.org, books are housed at the Mid-Continent Public Library - North Independence branch
  • Missouri State Historical Society, 1020 Lowry St., Columbia, MO 65201-7298, 573-882-7083, shs.umsystem.edu/index.shtml
  • Kansas State Historical Society, 6425 SW 6th Avenue, Topeka, KS 66615, 785-272-8681, www.kshs.org

County/City

Churches

  • Books and lists finding aids exist for this including Val Greenwood's book part of which is excerpted at www.genealogy.com/genealogy/5_grnwd.html
  • Also see the appropriate chapter in Ralph Crandall’s book Shaking Your Family Tree
  • Family History Library of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (aka. LDS) facilities in Salt Lake City or visit any of their local Family History Centers (go to the web site www.genhomepage.com/FHC/all.html or look in the phone book under “Church of Jesus Christ” for the family centers. The Salt Lake facility is H-U-G-E (it’s hard to overstate that!!!). Both the New England Historic Genealogical Society of Boston and the National Genealogical Society of Washington, D.C. sponsor annual trips to the LDS Salt Lake facility for their members. Books exist that explain how to research in the Salt Lake facility. One book is Your Guide to the Family History Library: How to Access the World's Largest Genealogy Resource by Paula Stuart Warren and James W. Warren, $20

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