Alabama Archives and Libraries

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Alabama Wiki Topics
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Beginning Research
Record Types
Alabama Background
Cultural Groups
Local Research Resources

These repositories preserve sources, maintain indexes, and provide services to help genealogists document their ancestors who lived in Alabama.

Wiki Articles on Major Repositories in Alabama[edit | edit source]

National Archives at Atlanta · Alabama Department of Archives and History · Alabama Historical Association · Auburn University Libraries · Birmingham Public Library · Florence-Lauderdale Public Library · Huntsville-Madison County Public Library · Mobile Municipal Archives · Mobile Public Library · Samford University Library · University of Alabama Libraries · Wallace State Community College Library · Dallas Public Central Library TX · Evans Memorial Library Aberdeen MS

Online Records of Alabama[edit | edit source]

Links to online databases and indexes that may include vital records, biographies, cemeteries, censuses, histories, immigration records, land records, maps, military records, naturalizations, newspapers, obituaries, or probate records.

  • Alabama, Surname Files, 1901–2005, ($). Index. Alabama Department of Archives and History collection of newspaper clippings, obituaries, local and family histories, donated family research and records, extracts from censuses, etc.
  • Alabama Mosaic has digitized records from archives and libraries across the state, including oral histories and records, such as probate, naturalization, and military.
    National Archives at Atlanta (Morrow, GA)

National Repositories[edit | edit source]

National Archives at Atlanta[edit | edit source]

5780 Jonesboro Road
Morrow, Georgia 30260 USA
Phone: 770-968-2100
Fax: 770-968-2547
Internet: National Archives at Atlanta

Records from over 100 federal agencies and courts in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee. Also includes Vice Admiralty Courts of SC, evolution of federal courts, Constitutional rights, Revolutionary War, Civil War, reconstruction, World Wars I and II, and space exploration. Microfilms for censuses, diplomatic missions, military service records, bounty-land applications, passenger arrival lists, naturalizations, American Indians, and African Americans.[1]
AL Dept of Archives & History in Montgomery

Statewide Repositories[edit | edit source]

Alabama Dept of Archives and History[edit | edit source]

Alabama Department of Archives and History
Mailing address: P.O. Box 300100
Street address: 624 Washington Avenue
Montgomery, AL 36130-0100 USA
Telephone: 334-242-4435
Fax: 334-240-3433
Internet: Alabama Department of Archives and History

Start here if you are researching Alabama ancestors. Every county has local records such as marriages, deeds, and the associated indexes.[2]
The Department of Archives and History (closed Mondays) has the following records: federal and state censuses; vital records (birth, death, marriage, and divorce); county records (deeds, wills, and other probate records); land, military, and military discharge records (DD214s); surname files; city directories; African-American records (Reconstruction to the present); American Indian records; and immigration and naturalization records.

Alabama Historical Association[edit | edit source]

PO Box 456
Livingston, AL 35470 USA
Internet: Alabama Historical Association

Holds annual meetings and publishes The Alabama Review. (WorldCat 909782198).[3]
Ralph B Draughon Library Auburn University

Regional Repositories[edit | edit source]

Auburn University Libraries[edit | edit source]

RBD Library Special Collections Department
231 Mell Street
Auburn University, AL 36849 USA
Telephone: 334-844-4500 or 800-446-0387
Internet: Genealogy

The R.B. Draughon library has a large genealogical collection including censuses, books and periodicals, local and state histories, family histories, passenger arrival lists, Confederate soldier lists, and genealogical website links.[2] [4]
Linn-Henley Research Library in Birmingham

Birmingham Public Library[edit | edit source]

Linn-Henley Research Library
2100 Park Place
Birmingham, AL 35203 USA
Telephone: 205-226-3665
Internet: Birmingham Public Library online

Book, periodicals, maps, and family folders.[2]

Florence-Lauderdale Public Library[edit | edit source]

350 N Wood Ave
Florence, AL 35630
Telephone: 256-764-6564
E-mail: Contact us form
Internet: Florence-Lauderdale Public Library

They have very good collections of American Civil War records, genealogy, and local history.[2]

Huntsville-Madison County Public Library[edit | edit source]

Special Collections
915 Monroe St SW
Huntsville, AL 35801 USA
Telephone: 256-532-5969
Internet: Special Collections

This library has the best genealogical collection for Alabama families. It is a good place to start research for Alabama sources during any time period. They also have a good southern states collection.[2]

Mobile Municipal Archives[edit | edit source]

Mailing address: P.O. Box 1827
Street address: 457 Church Street
Mobile, Alabama 36633-1827 USA
Telephone: 251-208-7740
Fax: 251-208-7428
Internet: Municipal Archives

Includes records of early Alabama/Florida settlers: Spanish, French, and Anglo especially during the Spanish period. This is the premier library for Gulf Coast settlers from Louisiana to Florida.[2]
Mobile Public Library

Mobile Public Library[edit | edit source]

Local History Dept.
704 Government Street
Mobile, AL 36602-1499 USA
Telephone: 334-208-7093
Fax: 334-208-5866
Internet: Mobile Public Library Online

They have a very good genealogy department in its own separate building.[2]
Samford University in Birmingham. The Library is in the center of the image.

Samford University Library[edit | edit source]

Special Collection Department
800 Lakeshore Drive
Birmingham, AL 35229 USA
Telephone: 205-726-2749
Fax: 205-726-2642
Internet: Samford University Library

This is one of the finest collections in the South. They have both original and secondary sources primarily for Alabama and the Southeast USA. They also have a good Irish manuscript and local histories for Kerry and Cork. They have an especially strong Baptist collection including congregational and mission records, maps, local histories, genealogical periodicals, and newspapers.[2]

University of Alabama Libraries[edit | edit source]

Mailing address: P.O. Box 870266
Street address: Hoole Special Collections Library
Mary Harmon Bryant Hall, 2nd floor
500 Hackberry Lane
Tuscaloosa, AL 35487-0266 USA
Telephone: 205-348-0500
Fax: 205-348-1699
Internet: University of Alabama Libraries

The Alabama Collection strength is local and county history materials about Alabama and its history, life and culture, including the American Civil War.[5] The Americana Collection features books, manuscripts, newspapers, photographs, and artifacts from late 17th century to 2009 focused on Alabama, the American Civil War, presidential history, and the American South.[6]

Wallace State Community College Library[edit | edit source]

Mailing address: P.O. Box 2000
Street address: 801 Main Street NW
Hanceville AL, 35077-2000 USA
Telephone: Library 256-352-8260, Genealogy 256-352-8263
Internet: Wallace State Community College Library

The genealogy collection is centered on Alabama, its neighboring states, the Old South, Kentucky, the Civil War and Cherokee Indians. They have books, periodicals, microfilm, CD-ROM disks, computer programs, family folders, and access to 2.5 million Family History Library microfilms.[7]

Outside of Alabama Repositories[edit | edit source]

Dallas Public Central Library in Texas

Dallas Public Central Library[edit | edit source]

1515 Young St.
Dallas, Texas 75201-9987 USA
Telephone: 214-670-1400

Outstanding genealogical collection with records for Texas, Oklahoma, the South including Alabama, Mid-Atlantic, and New England states.[8]

Evans Memorial Library[edit | edit source]

105 North Long Street
Aberdeen, Mississippi 39730 USA
Telephone: 622-369-4601
Fax: 622-369-2971
Internet: Evans Memorial Library

This is an outstanding regional library with records of the South, including Alabama oral histories, church records, newspapers, maps, military records, Chickasaw Indians, African Americans, fraternal histories, scrapbooks, manuscripts and photos.[2]

Courthouse Fires[edit | edit source]


Fires or other disasters occurred in many county courthouses. If records are missing , you can often find substitute records such as cemetery records, censuses, church records, newspapers, Bible records, military service and pension records, delayed birth certificates, or records in neighboring counties that have similar information. See Burned Counties Research. Sometimes landowners re-registered their deeds after a courthouse fire. The following list shows when Alabama courthouses were damaged by fire or other disasters:[9] [10]

Alabama County Courthouse Disasters
Baker 1870
Butler 1853
Calhoun 1861, 1865
Cherokee 1882
Chilton 1870
Choctaw 1871
Clay 1875
Coffee 1877
Conecuh 1868, 1875, 1885, 1895, 1900
Coosa 1900
Covington 1839, 1847, 1878, 1895
Crenshaw 1898
Dale 1869, 1885
Fayette 1866, 1916
Franklin 1890
Geneva 1898
Greene 1868
Jackson 1864, 1920
Jefferson 1870
Lawrence 1859
Limestone 1862
Marengo 1848, 1965
Marion 1866, 1883
Mobile 1823, 1840, 1872
Monroe 1832
Morgan 1926, 1938
Pickens 1864, 1876
Pike 1828
Randolph 1897
Sumter 1901
Walker 1865, 1877, 1886, 1932
Winston 1891

References[edit | edit source]

  1. William Dollarhide and Ronald A. Bremer. America's Best Genealogy Resource Centers (Bountiful, Utah: Heritage Quest, 1998), 127-28. WorldCat 39493985; FHL Ref Book 973 J54d.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 2.7 2.8 Dollarhide and Bremer, 11.
  3. Alabama Historical Association (accessed 6 November 2015).
  4. Genealogy in Auburn University Archives (accessed 8 November 2015).
  5. Using the W.S. Hoole Special Collections Library: Books in University Libraries (accessed 8 November 2015).
  6. Using the A.S. Williams III Americana Collection: Overview in University Libraries (accessed 8 November 2015).
  7. Genealogy in Wallace State Community College (accessed 8 November 2015).
  8. Dollarhide and Bremer, 107.
  9. Marilyn Davis Barefield, Researching in Alabama: a Genealogical Guide (Birmingham, Alabama: Birmingham Public Library, 1998), 25. WorldCat 42306439; FHL Book 976.1 D27b 1998.
  10. Wendy L. Elliott, Research in Alabama (Bountiful, Utah: American Genealogical Lending Library, 1987). WorldCat 607423538; FHL Fiche 6117558 (2 fiche); Book 976.1 D27e.