Genealogy Department

Mission Statement

We collect materials reflecting the general migration patterns of people in Southern Illinois. The primary focus is on Virginia, North and South Carolina, Tennessee and Kentucky, as well as Southern Illinois. Of secondary importance are materials covering other migration routes through Ohio, Indiana, Pennsylvania, Missouri, Arkansas and Louisiana

Current holdings:

Our collection, include more than 14,750 volumes and 3,900 microform.

We also house the Illinois State Organization National Society Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) library (more than 2,600 items)

We also maintain subscriptions to multiple online Genealogical resources.

How do I find out what you own?

Our holdings are online with the Illinois Heartland Library System database. They also listed on national databases (OCLC Worldshare) and Illinet Online (IO).

Can I check out the materials?

The majority of the collection is available for direct checkout on interlibrary loan (ILL). Through reciprocal borrowing, qualified individuals may check out up to five items on site. The library also loans several thousand titles each year through ILL. Contact your home library to request interlibrary loan service for specific titles. Items in the DAR collection do not circulate.

My library is not a member of Illinois Heartland Library System. How do I request materials?

If your library is in Illinois has access to OCLC it can place the holds through it.  If a library does not have access to OCLC, they can complete an ALA request form and submit the request by mail or by fax.  Out of state libraries should complete an ALA request form mail their request directly to the library and include $10 for loaning fee.

What are some of the items in your collection?

  • Index to Illinois death certificates, 1916-1942 (fiche)
  • Illinois Census records through 1930 (film)
  • Index to Report of the Adjutant General (film)
  • Illinois Marriage Record Index (fiche)
  • Illinois Public Domain Land Sales (fiche)
  • Soundex for Illinois 1880-1920 (film)
  • Selected records from Revolutionary War pension and bounty-land-warrant application files (film)
  • “Justice Collection” – unique local research on Jefferson County records (books)
  • Mt. Vernon, IL newspapers from 1880’s (indexing of obituaries incomplete) (film)
  • Several area newspapers

What equipment is available for use?

Plain paper copier; Microfilm/fiche reader printers; film/fiche readers. There is a charge for copies.

Is someone available to do research for me?

The library supports and maintains the collection and relies on individuals and genealogy societies to provide research. We will provide a list of individuals willing to do research upon receipt of a self-addressed stamped envelope. You also may contact the Jefferson County Genealogical Society, PO BOX 1131, Mt. Vernon, IL 62864. Please include a self-addressed stamped envelope with any inquiries. There is a charge for research.