Indiana Archives, Libraries, and Societies

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This entry was originally written by Carol L. Maki and Michael John Neill for Red Book: American State, County, and Town Sources.

This article is part of
Indiana sil.png
the Indiana Family History Research series.
History of Indiana
Indiana Vital Records
Census Records for Indiana
Background Sources for Indiana
Indiana Maps
Indiana Land Records
Indiana Probate Records
Indiana Court Records
Indiana Tax Records
Indiana Cemetery Records
Indiana Church Records
Indiana Military Records
Indiana Periodicals, Newspapers, and Manuscript Collections
Indiana Archives, Libraries, and Societies
Indiana Naturalization
Ethnic Groups of Indiana
Indiana County Resources
Map of Indiana

Indiana State Library

Genealogy Division
140 North Senate Ave.
Indianapolis, IN 46204

The largest collection of research material in the state is centrally located at the state's capitol. The library's facility includes three major divisions of records: Indiana, Genealogy, and Newspaper. The Indiana State Archives is located in the library; the Indiana Historical Society is located adjacent to the library. The Indiana Division of the library provides the researcher with printed sources: county histories and indexes, church records, city directories, and newspapers. The Genealogy Division holds the sizable microfilm collection of records: vital, deed, probate, court, church, and cemetery and spearheads the County Records of Indiana Microfilming Project. The Genealogy Division also holds an Indiana Marriage Index, 1958'97, an Indiana Mortality Records Index (index to mortality census schedules from 1850'80), and some online indexes to newspapers for limited periods on their website. Carolynne L. Miller's Indiana Sources for Genealogical Research in the Indiana State Library (Indianapolis: The Family History Section, Indiana Historical Society, 1984) provides an excellent guide to both of these divisions. In the Newspaper Division an attempt has been made to preserve all dailies and weeklies in the state. A published guide is available from the Indiana Historical Society.

Indiana State Archives

Commission on Public Records
140 N. Senate Ave.
Indianapolis, IN 46204

The keystone to this collection is its focus on military and federal land records, described earlier. Other holdings are described elsewhere in this chapter.

Indiana Historical Society

450 W. Ohio St.
Indianapolis, IN 46202

Founded in 1830 and adjacent to the Indiana State Library, the society's collections include rare books, manuscripts (see Manuscripts), over 100,000 images of people and scenes, early mid-western and Indiana maps pertaining to the history of Native Americans and the Old Northwest. The society has published or developed numerous materials and guides to records throughout the state, including the 1860 census project (see Census Records for Indiana).

Allen County Public Library

Genealogy Department
900 Webster St.
Fort Wayne, IN 46802

Mailing address:
P.O. Box 2270
Fort Wayne, Indiana 46801

This department has thousands of family genealogies; research guides; state, county, and local histories; indexes to births, deaths, marriages, cemetery inscriptions, and wills; census microfilms; passenger lists; and city directories. The collection is particularly strong for all of mid-western local history, but has other excellent regional collections as well. PERiodical Source Index (PERSI) is compiled from its extensive periodical collection. The library is a non-circulating facility, but the staff will do limited research. Response to a written query for information is usually answered promptly and very thoroughly.

Indiana Genealogical Society

P.O. Box 10507
Fort Wayne, IN 46852

Southern Indiana Genealogical Society

P.O. Box 665
New Albany, IN 47150

The Newberry Library

60 W. Walton St.
Chicago, IL 60610

This repository, although in Illinois, should be considered a source for Indiana research as Indiana holdings are among the library's strongest state collections. Records include indexes and transcripts of vital records, probates, deeds, cemetery records, naturalizations, church records, and extensive land records.