Map of library layout.
 
Here are descriptions of the various collections found in the library.
 

The Iowa Genealogical Society Library Collection

 
Federal Census of 1790 - 1870 for all states whose census exists for those years.  The 1880, 1900, 1910, 1920, and 1930 censuses are not complete, except for Iowa. 
 
Printed indexes to most census records for the majority of states for the years 1790 through 1860, with some for 1870 as well.  Indexes are also on microfiche.
 
The Soundex (a phonetic index on microfilm) for Iowa for 1880, 1900, and 1920, and scattered ones for other states.  
 
Iowa Mortality Schedules for 1850, 1860, 1870, and 1880, taken at the time of the census, listing those who died in the year preceding the actual enumeration. (All four are on microfilm. The 1850 is also in print [977.7/GEN] and the 1880 is also in print, located with the census index books.)
 
State census records for 1856, 1885, 1895, 1915, and 1925, which are not indexed state-wide. These contain many pieces of information not found in Federal census records, such as the 1925 census which asked the names and birthplaces of the parents of everyone enumerated.  There are also several state census records listing only head-of household for various years from 1836 - 1854.  Most are not indexed.
 
Nebraska and Kansas state census records for 1885.
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Wisconsin state census records for 1855, 1875, and 1895.
 
Labor Contracts of Freedmen - Labor contracts between planters and freedmen, Jan 1865-Nov. 1868.  Many of these contracts can be linked or matched with people found in the 1870 census. [located in the African-American microfilm drawer]
 
1900 Census Indian Territory Census - Cherokee, Chickasaw, Choctaw, Creek Nation; as well as other miscellaneous census for Olls, Sac & Fox in Tama, Iowa for various years.
 
Cherokee Indian Collection – [970.1] – Numerous books include Those Who Cried (1835 census),Cherokee Emigration Rolls 1817-1835The Trail of Tears, Cherokee Roots and Cherokee Reservees.
 
Iowa Vital Records, filmed in the county court houses, and include births, deaths, and marriages from 1880 to approximately 1930, depending on the county.  Many local chapters have indexed or copied their own county's records such as probate and naturalization, as well as funeral home and cemetery records.  These are in print and on the shelves.
 
Military Records:  Roster of Iowa Soldiers [index on microfilm, books on microfilm, rare books: 977.7/ROS] for those who served from Iowa in the Civil War, as well as an index to the membership cards of the Grand Army of the Republic, the veteran's group of union soldiers of the late 1800's and early 1900's [on microfilm].  The Rolls of Honor [973.76/QUA] recently reprinted, has the names of soldiers who died in that war, and the name of the National Cemetery in which they are buried.
 
 World War I draft cards from Iowa and Indiana are on microfilm.  They contain birth date, age, occupation, and next of kin.  As most of these men were born before the turn of the century, there are often no birth records for them.  There are also Militia Rolls which began in Iowa about 1862, and continued until about 1910, filed by county
 
Iowa Old Age Assistance Records, which were a head tax for land owners compiled by the county assessor for the years 1934 to 1937. [on microfilm]
 
Periodicals from all over the United States, as published by other state, county, and local genealogical societies.  Part of our collection is stored in the west wing. These are searchable by PERSI (PERiodical Search Index) at most public libraries using HeritageQuest On Line.
 
Published Vital Records from other states, as well as church, land, tax, and cemetery records; county histories with genealogies; and published town records.
 
Thousands of family histories and genealogies that have been written and donated to the library.
 
Vertical files of family materials, too slim to be on the shelf.
 
Pioneer Certificate files, consisting of charts and documentation providing proof that a person's ancestor lived in Iowa before 1856, 100 years for a Century Certificate, or by 1846 for a Statehood Certificate.
 
Pension Application Records of the Revolutionary War [973.524/WHI] and War of 1812 [973.52/WHI].
 
List of Bounty Land Warrants from state governments (incomplete). [333.16/SMI]
 
On microfiche are the first volumes of the Virginia Genealogist, census indexes, genealogies, and much more.
 
Canada collection:  [971] Our collection includes The Central Canadians and The French Canadians, both book series are an alphabetized directory of the people, places and vital dates covering 1600-1900; also Nova Scotia Immigrants to 1867 and Early Ontario Settlers.
 
Quaker Records [289.6] such as Hinshaw, Mennonite [289.7] materials, books about Palatines, Huguenots, Methodists, and Catholics, to name a few.
 
Immigration and emigration materials, including all of the series Germans to America [325/GLA] that have published to date.  The library also has The Famine Immigrants  [325/GLA] about the Irish, as well as The Great Migration Begins, [974.02/AND] which covers New England before 1633.
 
A complete set of the Hawkeye Heritage, IGS's own quarterly journal published since 1966, with a topical index published in 1993. [977.7/IOW]
 
Some obituaries taken from newspapers all over Iowa and other states for people with Iowa connections, are index cards.  Other drawers also contain births, marriages and deaths on index cards. There are also two sets of obituaries on microfilm.
 
Over 3,000 books of county records that IGS has published, and which are available for purchase.
 
Iowa Genealogical Society
628 East Grand Avenue
Des Moines, IA 50309-1924

Phone: (515) 276-0287

 
Email: igs@iowagenealogy.org
Web: http://www.iowagenealogy.org