Genealogy Resources

Premium Resources

19th Century U. S. Newspapers Digital Archive

Digital images for hundreds of 19th century United States newspapers. Includes The Galveston Daily News (Texas' oldest newspaper) from 1874 until 1897.*

Access Newspaper Archive (In Library Use Only)

The largest historic newspaper source online containing tens of millions of searchable newspaper pages, dating as far back as the 1700s.

African American Heritage

This collection was created in partnership with leading African American genealogists to develop a comprehensive mix of resources, records, and tools specifically pertaining to African Americans.*

American Civil War: Letters and Diaries

This database of primary source material contains over two thousand authors and approximately one hundred thousand pages of diaries, letters and memoirs.*

American Civil War: Research Database

Online resource for researching the soldiers, regiments, and battles of the American Civil War contains indexed, searchable information on over four million soldiers and thousands of battles, together with fifteen thousand photographs.*

Ancestry Library Edition (In Library Use Only)

The library version of the database, one of the largest collections of family history data online. It includes census, vital, military, and immigration records, as well as newspaper articles and city directories.

Clayton Microprint Collection

This collection represents a major portion of Clayton Library's holdings, most of which are not listed in the Houston Public Library Catalog.

Clayton Periodical Collection

Clayton Library has over 3000 genealogy and local history periodical titles. The periodical collection covers most US states and many foreign countries.


This database contains almost 40 million images of primary source materials. Many are available here for the first time.*

Genealogy Connect

Includes the "how-to" of genealogy research in addition to some ancestor information.*

HistoryGeo (Available at Clayton Library Only)

Contains land-ownership maps, historical atlases and other content indispensable for recreating frontier neighborhoods and tracking migrations of families across the United States.


An issue with remote access has been reported.  We apologize for the inconvenience. Please visit any of our HPL locations to use this resource.

Includes birth, death and marriage records from 48 countries, the complete U.S. and U.K. censuses, immigration, military and tombstone records and more than 2 billion family tree profiles.* (Includes remote access)

Texas Digital Sanborn Maps

Sanborn maps are historical large scale plans of a city drawn at a scale of 50 feet to an inch. These maps are used to trace the history and development of cities and are also helpful in genealogical and historical research.*

Recommended Websites Texas

A vast collection of digitized documents related to Texas government and history from the Lorenzo de Zavala State Archives and Library Building in Austin and the Sam Houston Regional Library and Research Center in Liberty. **Note: Free access to the records that have been digitized by Ancestry is available to Texas residents courtesy of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission. Users are required to create a free Texas account (instructions at the bottom of the website's homepage). 

Cemetery Records Online

Directory of selected names in cemeteries around the United States and other countries.

Clayton Library Center for Genealogical Research

Houston Public Library's genealogical collection.

Find contact information for every county government in the United States. 

Family Search

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saint's links to genealogical resources on the web.

Find a Grave

Search for your ancestors among 121 million grave records. Also includes a Famous Grave Search.

Harris County Archives

Documents the history of the government and the citizens of Harris County as revealed through the county records and donated materials.

Houston City Directories

Houston City Directories for selected years between 1866 and 1922 are now available through the Houston Public Library Digital Archives.

Portal to Texas History

Digital materials from collections covering the whole gamut of Texas history from prehistory to the present day. Along with all known Republic of Texas Era newspapers, you may discover anything from an ancestor's picture to a rare historical map.


Many sources and links for genealogical researchers.

USGenWeb Project

Network of volunteers working to create a center for genealogical research for every county in the United States.

Where to Write for Vital Records

Links are provided for users who want direct access to individual state and territory information.