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Local History ROCs!
DID YOU KNOW that volunteers are available on Saturdays to assist with your family history research? No appointments are necessary, but please call our Reference Desk at (585)428-8370 to be sure we have a docent for the day and time you plan your visit.
Be sure to check out Local History & Genealogy's
informative weekly and monthly programs.
Parking is FREE on Sundays for library patrons in the Court Street Garage.
Family Detectives Club
Weekly genealogy workshops every Sunday.
1:15-1:45 p.m. October-May in the Local History Division
Rochester's Rich History
Monthly Sunday afternoon lectures on a variety of local history topics, May-October, in Rundel Auditorium, 3rd floor, Rundel Memorial Building
Join us for the next program in the Rochester's Rich History Series:
2-3 p.m., April 12, 2015 (Please note: This is the second Sunday)
Rochester: Then and Now Through City Photographs
Presented by Ira Srole
Did you know that Rochester is one of a handful of cities in the United States to employ its own photographer? Ira Srole has been a City of Rochester photographer for over thirty-five years. During that time, he has had the opportunity to observe and experience contemporary Rochester history as it was being made. In this presentation, Ira looks at Rochester's history through the lens of his background in sociology, and asks some important questions. Just how important was the construction of the Erie Canal aqueduct to the early development of Rochester? Why was Rochester a stop on the Underground Railroad? How has public safety, education, and economic development affected Rochester’s contemporary history? Ira’s talk will be illustrated with images from the collection of the Communications Bureau Photo Lab.
The map below gives an overview of the Local History & Genealogy web site; click on it for a full-size view
The Local History and Genealogy Division offers expert in-person reference service, as well as telephone and email service for quick reference questions. All materials in the Local History and Genealogy Division are restricted to use within the department, but a significant and growing portion of the collection is available online. Also, as many materials are old and fragile, photocopying is restricted, but patrons may bring in equipment to photograph items.
The Local History and Genealogy Division and its partners have digitized photographs, books, manuscripts, maps, directories, postcards, and other items for easy access and for the preservation of original print material held within selected local collections in Monroe County. The thousands of items found here represent the rich history of the Rochester region. They are of interest to anyone researching local history and genealogy. Collections throughout the county can now be searched at one online location, thanks to the cooperation of many partner institutions.
The Central Library of Rochester and Monroe County boasts one of the premier collections of local historical and genealogical materials in western New York, while smaller municipal libraries have built collections of materials relevant to their particular towns.
The sections listed below are links to extensive materials held by the Central Library's Local History and Retrieval Divisions and by various town libraries.
The information provided by these various resources will help researchers find answers to questions about the history of Rochester and Monroe County, and will aid genealogy researchers looking for family information. What is provided online, however, is only a very small part of all the collections held at the libraries in Rochester and Monroe County. The information here will help you get started, but visiting our libraries will speed you on your way.
Genealogy Resources - a variety of helpful tools and guides for researching family history and finding information on past residents of Rochester and Monroe County
Local History Resources - various resources covering the history of Rochester and western New York
Rochester Images - historic and contemporary photographs, maps, postcards and other memorabilia from Rochester and Monroe County
Digitized Collections - historic books, newspapers and magazines of local interest that can be viewed online or downloaded and printed
Pathfinders - guides to special topics
News - includes information on new items available online