Wichita Public Library Genealogy Center

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Wichita Public Library Genealogy Center

Contact Information[edit | edit source]

E-mail:[1]  reference@wichitalibrary.org


711 West Second Street
Wichita, KS 67203

Telephone[1]  316.261.8509 ; Fax 316-262-4540 


Monday - Friday 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m
Saturday 2:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m
Sunday Closed  
Holidays: Use the events calendar to find holiday closings.

Directions, map, parking, and public transportation:[2]

  • Driving directions:  From US 400 / US 54 / Kellogg Avenue take the Seneca Street exit. Turn north onto Seneca Street. Turn east on Second Street. WPL is located on the right at the corner of Second and McLean Boulevard.
  • Google map:  Wichita Public Library
  • Parking:  No parking fee for the library lot.

Internet sites and databases:

Collection Description[edit | edit source]

The Genealogy / Special Collections Center contains over 43,000 genealogy books and magazines covering every state in the nation with heavy coverage on Kansas, the Great Plains, the Midwest, the South, and the American colonies. There is an emphasis on states that have had a heavy emigration to Kansas, especially New England and Midwestern states. The Edward & Elizabeth Burns Historical Research Pavilion also has a large Native American collection, mainly covering the Great Plains tribes, and a large military collection with over 2,300 volumes on the Civil War. Other major collections include: state and federal censuses, vital records indexes, probate records, immigration lists, land records, tax lists, cemetery records, church records, town histories, ethnic histories, Dawes Commission Enrollment Records, Draper Manuscript Collection, Germans to America, Italians to America, and the Barbour Collection. Over 20,000 rolls of microfilm cover the city's major newspapers, the Wichita Eagle and the Wichita Beacon and other local topics such as city directories, tax rolls, funeral home records and telephone books.[3]

The Kansas and Local History collection has many history books and genealogies. In 1988, their emphasis was mostly books, periodicals, and special publications for southeast Kansas, and corners of Missouri, Arkansas, and Oklahoma,[4] but the collection has since grown to include over 19,000 volumes covering the entire Great Plains.

Tip[edit | edit source]

Search the collections on the Wichita Public Library Online Catalog before visiting.[5]

Alternate Repositories[edit | edit source]

If you cannot visit or find a source at the Wichita Public Library Genealogy Center, a similar source may be available at one of the following.

Overlapping Collections

Similar Collections

  • Iola Public Library, for all Kansas including family folders, special indexes, and published records for many counties of Kansas.</ref>
  • Johnson County Library, Overland Park, both a Kansas and a genealogy collection, mostly books, and periodicals with family folders. Also covers Missouri, Tennessee, and Kentucky.</ref>
  • Kansas Genealogical Society, Dodge City, has the best set of family folders and genealogical periodicals in Kansas.</ref>. Also, clippings, obituaries, and an online catalog.
  • Kansas Historical Society, Topeka, clearly the best place to start researching Kansas ancestors including newspapers, county records, biographies, genealogies, land records, and railroads.[10] Statewide births and deaths prior to 1894; City of Topeka births and deaths 1885-1912.[11]
  • Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library offers Ancestry.com, America's Obituaries, HeritageQuest Online, and the Topeka Room with local interest materials.

Neighboring Collections

Sources[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Contact Us at Wichita Public Library (accessed 14 April 2014).
  2. 2.0 2.1 Central Library at Wichita Public Library (accessed 14 April 2014).
  3. Genealogy in Wichita Public Library (accessed 15 February 2016).
  4. William Dollarhide, and Ronald A. Bremer, America's Best Genealogy Resource Centers (Bountiful, UT: Heritage Quest, 1988), 47. WorldCat 39493985; FHL Book 973 J54d.
  5. Catalog in Wichita Public Library (accessed 14 April 2014).
  6. Dollarhide and Bremer, 2.
  7. Dollarhide and Bremer, 67.
  8. Research Library in American Historical Society of Germans from Russia (accessed 3 February 2016).
  9. Amanda Wahlmeier, Orphan Train Research Center curator, orphantraindepot@gmail.com, 28 September 2012, e-mail to David Dilts, DiltsGD@familysearch.org.
  10. Dollarhide and Bremer, 47.
  11. Births, Deaths, and Marriages in Shawnee County (accessed 8 February 2016).
  12. 12.0 12.1 12.2 Alice Eichholz, ed., Ancestry's Red Book: American State, County and Town Sources, 3rd ed. (Salt Lake City: Ancestry Pub., 2004), 237. Ancestry digital copy ($); WorldCat 55947869; FHL Book 973 D27rb 2004.
  13. 13.0 13.1 Handybook for Genealogists: United States of America, 9th ed. (Logan, Utah: Everton Pub., 1999), 149. WorldCat 812163213; FHL Book 973 D27e 1999.
  14. Library in Midwest Historical and Genealogical Society (accessed 15 February 2016).
  15. Topeka Genealogical Society Library in Topeka Genealogical Society (accessed 4 February 2016).
  16. KDHE Office of Vital Statistics in Kansas Department of Health and Environment (accessed 4 February 2016).
  17. Midwest Genealogy Center in Mid-Continent Public Library (accessed 7 March 2014).
  18. Dollarhide and Bremer, 47 and 67.
  19. Special Collections in Kansas City Public Library (accessed 7 March 2014).