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STL Special Library Spotlight: Special Collections, St. Louis County Library July 28, 2009

Posted by Cynthia in Library Stuff.

Have you ever heard of a place or event and thought it sounds neat only to have your expectations completely surpassed – my example is the City Museum, it sounds like a museum about a city, right? The St. Louis County Library Special Collections was one of those places for me.  I thought they’d probably have a nice collection of St. Louis area genealogical information, but maybe not much for a non-native St. Louisan like myself. I was pleasantly surprised.

The collection is massive, one of the largest in the United States. We got a guided tour through the floors of family histories, maps, and geographical directories.  The collection includes the National Genealogical Society’s collection and provides access to the Salt Lake City microfilms. At one point we were touring the closed stacks and I noticed we were standing in the family histories, I took the opportunity to sneak down an aisle and found a book devoted to my family lineage!

The other impressive attribute of this library is the staff. All librarians working in this collection have a background in genealogy, making them knowledgeable and sympathetic to patrons stuck “out on a limb” of their family tree.

I can’t wait to spread the word about this collection…and once this class is done, I’m pulling my box of years-old genealogy research out of my closet, dusting it off and heading back to the St. Louis County Library myself!



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