Missouri Archives, Libraries, and Societies

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This entry was originally written by Marsha Hoffman Rising CG, FUGA, FASG, and Pamela Boyer Porter, CGRS, CGL for Red Book: American State, County, and Town Sources.

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

Missouri Historical Society Library and Research Center

225 S. Skinker Blvd.
P.O. Box 11940
St. Louis, MO 63112

The Missouri Historical Society was founded in 1866, and since that time has been collecting published and manuscript materials focusing on the history of St. Louis, the state of Missouri, and the nineteenth-century American West. The collections include notable holdings regarding the colonial and territorial periods, the American fur trade, western travel and exploration, steamboats and river transportation in the Mississippi Valley, the Civil War, and the 1904 St. Louis World's Fair. Much of the library's catalog is now accessible online at the website. In addition, the library's on-site 'Information File' indexes numerous local published sources, and the Archives Card Catalog indexes the manuscript collections.

State Historical Society of Missouri

1020 Lowry St.
Columbia, MO 65201

Located in the Ellis Library, University of Missouri'Columbia, this is a public institution that holds federal population censuses, newspapers, county histories, genealogies, city directories and county atlases in its wide collection. A former print publication of the society entitled Directory of Local Historical Societies, Museums, and Genealogical Societies in Missouri is now being maintained online at www.system.missouri.edu/shs/DirectoryMap.htm. The directory lists addresses, hours, special collections, and publications of these various organizations, most of which exist on a county level and publish their own materials.

Missouri State Archives

P.O. Box 1747
Jefferson City, MO 65102

Located at 600 West Main in Jefferson City, this is the official repository for state materials. The archives has an extensive microfilm collection of county records (see Missouri County Resources). In addition to original records, it houses some county histories, cemetery records, genealogies, and other published local records. The Research Room and Online Resources website at www.sos.mo.gov/archives/resources/resources.asp provides information about the records it holds and its online resources, including a searchable catalog.

Mercantile Library

Thomas Jefferson Library Bldg.
8001 Natural Bridge Rd.
St. Louis, MO 63121

Now located on the campus of University of Missouri'St. Louis, Mercantile Library was formed in 1846. It houses an excellent rare book and manuscript collection emphasizing Western Americana, travel and exploration, and Missouri history. The Herman T. Pott National Inland Waterways Library and the John W. Barriger III National Railroad Library reside within the Mercantile Library.

Mid-Continent Public Library Genealogy and Local History Branch

317 W. 24 Hwy
Independence, MO 64050

This impressive genealogy and history collection includes microfilm and textual research materials for Missouri and surrounding states. More than 6,000 genealogy and local history books are available nationwide by interlibrary loan through Mid-Continent's circulating collection.

St. Louis County Library

1640 S. Lindbergh Blvd.
St. Louis, MO 63131

Special Collections contains holdings of the St. Louis Genealogical Society and the National Genealogical Society as well as the genealogical and local history materials of St. Louis County Library. The 20,000-plus books of the National Genealogical Society's circulating collection are available by interlibrary loan to the general public through their local libraries.

Missouri State Genealogical Association(MoSGA)

P.O. Box 833
Columbia, MO 65205

This is the statewide genealogical organization, although many counties have their own local genealogical societies. MoSGA publishes the Missouri State Genealogical Association Journal on a quarterly basis. Article submissions for publication in the MoSGA Journal is accepted year-round and published in a timely manner.

The Official MoSGA weblog can be found at www.mosga.blogspot.com.

Information the Annual Conference can be found on the web site.

National Park Service, Wilson Creek National Battlefield Park

Springfield, MO 65807
Mailing address: 6424 West Farm Rd. 182
Republic, MO 65738-9514

An excellent new and expanded Civil War library opened in April 2003 and is available to the public Tuesday through Saturday.

St. Louis Genealogical Society

P.O. Box 43010
St. Louis, MO 63143

The largest genealogical society in the state with 2900 members, the society hosts a well-attended annual conference, monthly meetings, and Computer Interest Group meetings that are open to the public. Its library is housed in the St. Louis County Library (see above). The society office at 4 Sunnen Dr., Ste. 140, St. Louis, MO, also holds some resources.