Maryland Archives and Libraries

From FamilySearch Wiki
Jump to: navigation, search
Maryland Wiki Topics
Maryland flag.png
Beginning Research
Record Types
Maryland Background
Local Research Resources

These repositories preserve sources, maintain indexes, and provide services to help genealogists document their ancestors who lived in Maryland.

Wiki Articles on Major Repositories in Maryland

Allegheny County Library System Washington Street Library · Baltimore City Archives · Dorchester County Central Public Library · Enoch Pratt Free Library · Frederick County Artz Public Library · Frostburg State University Ort Library · Historical Society of Pennsylvania · Johns Hopkins University George Peabody Library · Library of Congress DC · Maryland Genealogical Society · Maryland State Archives · Maryland Historical Society · Maryland Historical Trust Library · Maryland State Law Library · National Archives and Records Administration (Archives I) DC · National Archives at College Park, Maryland (Archives II) · National Archives at Philadelphia PA · Pennsylvania State Archives · Talbot County Free Library · University of Maryland McKeldin Library · Washington County Free Library

Online Records of Maryland

MD ORP.png
Links to online databases and indexes that may include vital records, biographies, cemeteries, censuses, histories, immigration records, land records, maps, military records, naturalizations, newspapers, obituaries, or probate records.

  • Sailor is a collection of research databases for the use of Maryland public libraries including HeritageQuest Online and History Reference Center.

National Repositories

Library of Congress Jefferson Building in Washington, D.C.

Library of Congress

101 Independence Ave. SE
Thomas Jefferson Building, LJ G4
Washington, D.C. 20540-4660
Telephone:[1]  Reading Room: 202-707-5537
Fax:[1]  202-707-1957
E-mail:  Ask a Librarian[1]
Internet: LC Local History & Genealogy Reference Services

The LC "Local History and Genealogy Reading Room" has moved to the main reading room, but services are unchanged. They are part of the world's largest library including 50,000 genealogies, 100,000 local histories, and collections of manuscripts, microfilms, maps, newspapers, photographs, and published material, strong in North American, British Isles, and German sources.[2] Maryland family history is well represented.
Researchers' entrance at National Archives I in Washington, DC

National Archives I

700 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington DC
Telephone:  1-866-272-6272
Fax:  301-837-0483
E-mail: National Archives and Records Administration

Archives I has nationwide censuses, pre-WWI military service and pensions, passenger lists, naturalizations, passports, federal bounty land, homesteads, bankruptcy, ethnic sources, prisons, and federal employees. The National Archives Building in Washington, DC (Archives I), houses textual and microfilm records relating to genealogy, American Indians, pre-World War II military and naval-maritime matters, the New Deal, the District of Columbia, the Federal courts, and Congress.[3] Their collection includes many people who settled in Maryland.

US National Archives II in College Park, MD

National Archives II

8601 Adelphi Road
College Park, MD 20740-6001
Telephone: 866-272-6272
Fax: 301-837-0483
E-mail: I have a question form
Internet: National Archives at College Park, Maryland

Archives II houses documents created after 1900 at the departments of Agriculture, Commerce, Education, Energy, Health and Human Services, Housing and Urban Development, Interior, Justice, Labor, State, Transportation, and Treasury, modern military records, passport applications, and District of Columbia records. Many residents of Maryland are found among their records.[4]

Sign at the entrance to the National Archives at Philadelphia

National Archives at Philadelphia

14700 Townsend Road
Philadelphia, PA 19154-1096
Telephone: 215-305-2044
Fax: 215-305-2052

Has federal agency and court records for Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and West Virginia. All U.S. federal censuses 1790-1940, and indexes. Also have passenger arrivals in Philadelphia 1800-1945 and Baltimore, pension and bounty land warrant applications, naturalizations 1790-1990, early federal history, diplomacy, military history, Chinese-Americans, World War II homefront, National Park Service, merchant marine, U.S. Army Corp of Engineers, federal tax evasion and smuggling cases.[5]

National Genealogical Society

3108 Columbia Pike, Suite 300
Arlington, Virginia 22204-4370 USA
Telephone: 703-525-0050 or 800-473-0060
Fax 703-525-0052
Internet: National Genealogical Society

The National Genealogical Society (NGS) aims to serve and grow the genealogical community by providing education and training, fostering increased quality and standards, and promoting access to and preservation of genealogical records.[6] It is the premier American national society for everyone from the beginner to the most advanced family historian.[7] In conjunction with a sponsoring local genealogical society, it stages an annual NGS Conference. They also provide genealogical education courses, publications and videos.[8] Their NGS Book Loan Collection is now housed at the St. Louis County Library in Missouri. Their online collections include The National Intelligencer (Washington, DC) newspaper index 1800-1850, indexed Bible records and family groups from NGS members.[9]

WNRC stack area in Suitland, MD

Washington National Records Center

4205 Suitland Road
Suitland, MD 20746-8001
NARA telephone: 866-272-6272
NARA E-mail: Contact Us form
Internet: Services for the Public

Older than 15-years federal criminal court, federal civil court, and federal bankruptcy court records, and the federal agency records from the District of Columbia, Maryland, Virginia, and West Virginia.[10]

Statewide Repositories

Maryland Genealogical Society

201 West Monument Street
Baltimore, MD 21201
Internet: Maryland Genealogical Society

Maryland Historical Society

201 West Monument St.
Baltimore, Maryland 21201-4674
Telephone: 410-685-3750
Internet: Maryland Historical Society Library Overview

This facility has the largest genealogical book collection in Maryland, and family Bibles, newspapers, and biographies.[11]

Maryland Historical Trust Library

100 Community Place,
Crownsville, MD 21032
Telephone: 410-514-7655 (Call for hours of operation)
Internet: Maryland Historical Trust Library
Internet: Online catalog

Maryland State Archives

Hall of Records Building
350 Rowe Boulevard
Annapolis, MD 21401
Telephone: 410-260-6400
Fax: 410-974-2525
Internet: Maryland State Archives

This is the premier facility for locating Maryland ancestors. The Maryland State Archives online has nearly all available public records from 1634 to 1789; most original state and county records through the mid-twentieth century; microfilm copies of land, probate, and vital records to the present; and over 130 major card indexes to Maryland land records and early settlers, newspapers, county records, church records, family, and business records. This is the most complete collection of any of the 13 colonies. It can take up the three days just to check the indexes.[11] For more information about the state archives, see the following references.
  • Maryland. Hall of Records. A Guide to the Index Holdings at the Hall of Records. Rev., Bulletin, [Maryland. Hall of Records] No. 17. (Annapolis, Maryland: Hall of Records, 1972.) FHL book 975.2 A1 no. 56. This is a county-by-county list of indexes and years covered.
  • Papenfuse, Edward C., et al. A Guide to Government Records at the Maryland State Archives: A Comprehensive List by Agency and Record Series. (Annapolis, Maryland: Maryland State Archives, 1992.) FHL book 975.2 A3g. This guide lists record types, years covered, and series number.
  • Papenfuse, Edward C., et. al. A Guide to the Maryland Hall of Records: Local, Judicial and Administrative Records on Microfilm. Volume 1. (Annapolis, Maryland: Hall of Records Commission, 1978.) FHL fiche 6049468; book 975.2 A3pa v. 1. Volume one is a detailed list of many records on microfilm for Allegany County, Anne Arundel County, Baltimore County, and Baltimore City, Maryland. These include court, probate, and land records. The archives has additional computer printout lists for all counties. You can write to them for information about records of specific localities and time periods.
  • Radoff, Morris Leon, et al. The County Courthouses and Records of Maryland, Part Two: The Records. (Annapolis, Maryland: Hall of Records Commission, 1963.) FHL fiche 6054101 (fiches 4 and 5), 6054105; book 975.2 B4ma no. 13 This is a county-by-county list of record types, years covered, and series number.

Maryland State Law Library

Courts of Appeal Building
361 Rowe Boulevard
Annapolis, MD 21401
Telephone: 410-260-1430
Fax: 410-974-2063
Internet: Maryland State Law Library

Regional Repositories

Allegheny Co Lib Sys Washington St Lib

Washington Street Library in Cumberland, MD
Allegheny County Library System Washington Street Library
31 Washington Street
Cumberland, MD 21502
Telephone: 301-777-1200
Fax: 301-777-7299
Internet: Washington Street Library
They have a western Maryland historical collection with genealogies, and local histories.[11] Cumberland, Maryland, was the start of the National Road to Ohio and farther west.

Baltimore City Archives

2165 Druid Park Drive
Baltimore, MD 21211
Telephone: 410-396-0306
Internet: Baltimore City Archives

Two useful guides to Baltimore records are:
  • Cox, Richard J., and Patricia M. Vanorny. "The Records of a City: Baltimore and Its Historical Sources." Maryland Historical Magazine 70 (Fall 1975): 286-310. FHL book 975.2 H25m v. 70
  • LeFurgy, William G. The Records of a City: A Guide to the Baltimore City Archives. (Baltimore, Maryland: City Archives, 1984.) FHL book 975.26 A3bc

Dorchester County Central Public Library

303 Gay St.
Cambridge, MD 21613
Telephone: 410-228-7331
Internet: Dorchester County Public Library
Enoch Pratt Free Library in Baltimore, MD
Their collection includes many Maryland Eastern Shore, and Delaware historical references.[11]

Enoch Pratt Free Library

400 Cathedral Street
Baltimore, MD 21201-4484
Telephone: 410-396-5430
Fax: 410-396-1441
Internet: Enoch Pratt Free Library

Excellent local, county, and Maryland state records.[11]
Artz Public Library in Frederick, MD

Frederick County Artz Public Library

110 East Patrick Street
Frederick , MD 21701
Telephone: 301-600-1630
Internet: C. Burr Artz Public Library

They have Maryland history, genealogy, and more.[11]

Frostburg State University Ort Library

Frostburg State University Ort Library

1 Stadium Drive
Frostburg, Maryland 21532-2342
Telephone: 301-687-4395
E-mail: Ask a Librarian form
Internet: Frostburg State University Lewis J. Ort Library

Their Special Collections maintains material about Western Maryland and contiguous counties in Pennsylvania and West Virginia, answers genealogical reference questions, and provides an obituary copy service.[12]
Johns Hopkins Univ Peabody Library, Baltimore

Johns Hopkins Univ Peabody Library

Johns Hopkins University George Peabody Library
17 East Mount Vernon Place
Baltimore, MD 21202
Telephone: 410-659-8179
Fax: 410-659-8137
Internet: George Peabody Library

This collection has strengths in British and American history, biography, geography, and exploration and travel including a large map collection.The also have many manuscripts.[13]

Prince George's Co Genealogical Society

Prince George's County Genealogical Society
12219 Tulip Grove Drive
Bowie, MD
Telephone: 301-262-2063
Internet: Library information

5,500 volumes, surname files, family group sheets, Bible records and microfilms. Focused primarily on Prince George's County, Maryland, and the eastern states.[14]

Talbot County Free Library

Maryland Room
100 W. Dover Street
Easton, Maryland 21601
Telephone: 410-822-1626
Fax: 410-820-8217
E-mail: Message form
Internet: Maryland Room

Look here for their many Maryland Eastern Shore, and Delaware historical references.[11] Their collection includes church records, burial permits, Talbot County genealogy links, Bibles, family records, manuscripts, maps, local oral histories, and vertical files.[15]

UMD McKeldin Library in College Park, MD

University of Maryland McKeldin Library

College Park, MD 20742-7011
Telephone: 301-405-0800
Internet: Theodore R. McKeldin Library

Their Maryland historical collection is quite large.[11]

Washington County Free Library

100 South Potomac Street
Hagerstown MD 21740
Telephone: 301.739.3250
Internet: Genealogy

The Western Maryland Room  is a genealogical resource which includes published histories, oral histories, books, periodicals, and family folders.[11]

Outside Maryland Repositories

Pennsylvania State Archive in Harrisburg

Pennsylvania State Archives

300 North Street      (mail to:  350 North Street)
Harrisburg, PA 17120
Telephone: 717-783-3281
Internet: Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission

Their colonial records include many references to Maryland settlements.[11] This huge collection has indexes and original sources associated with the Pennsylvania Archives series, such as vital, military, prison, naturalization, land records, census, ships lists, railroads, mines, and 1.5 million online records[16] [17] including online genealogy guides.

Historical Society of Pennsylvania

Historical Society of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia
1300 Locust Street
Philadelphia, PA 19107-5699
Telephone: 215-732-6200
Fax: 215-732-2680
Has early Quakers, Germans, Scots-Irish, and other settlers in William Penn's colonies of Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Delaware. This is also an excellent place to learn about early settlers of Maryland.[11] Records which have been published are normally well-indexed. This society also has 17th-, 18th-, and 19th-century manuscripts (letters, diaries, account books, deeds, minutes, and scrapbooks), passenger arrival lists and indexes, [18] local and regional history, ethnic and immigrant studies materials, 600,000 books, 20 million manuscripts, over 300,000 graphics items, and 300 years of newspapers.[19]

Historical Society of Washington, D.C.

Historical Society of Washington, D.C. is on the 2nd floor of the Carnegie Library at Mt. Vernon Sq.
Kiplinger Research Library
Carnegie Library 2nd floor
801 K St NW
Washington, DC 20001
Telephone: 202-249-3955
Internet: Historical Society of Washington, D.C.
Think of this as the state archives for the District of Columbia because of the 200 years of local history documents for genealogists.[10] This includes families and notable individuals, organizations, businesses, neighborhoods, religious institutions, local houses of worship, funeral homes, diaries and personal papers, and early 18th century land records.[20] Researchers are welcomed in the Kiplinger Research Library by prior appointment only Tuesday through Friday. Access to the library and collections is free of charge.[21]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Contact Information in The Library of Congress (accessed 12 May 2010).
  2. The Collections in Local History and Genealogy Reading Room in The Library of Congress (accessed 8 January 2014).
  3. Information for Researchers at the National Archives Building in Washington, DC in National Archives (accessed 31 December 2013).
  4. William Dollarhide and Ronald A. Bremer. America's Best Genealogy Resource Centers (Bountiful, Utah: Heritage Quest, 1998), 2. WorldCat 39493985; FHL Ref Book 973 J54d.
  5. Dollarhide and Bremer, 126-27.
  6. NGS Mission in National Genealogical Society (accessed 14 January 2017).
  7. NGS Membership Trifold pdf in National Genealogical Society (accessed 14 January 2017).
  8. Home in National Genealogical Society (accessed 7 January 2017).
  9. Individual Member Benefits in National Genealogical Society (accessed 14 January 2017).
  10. 10.0 10.1 Dollarhide and Bremer, 29.
  11. 11.00 11.01 11.02 11.03 11.04 11.05 11.06 11.07 11.08 11.09 11.10 Dollarhide and Bremer, 55.
  12. Dr. David M. Gillespie Special Collections: Home in Lewis J. Ort Library (accessed 20 January 2017).
  13. George Peabody Library in Special Collections & Archives in Johns Hopkins Sheridan Libraries & University Museums (accessed 20 January 2017).
  14. Library information in Prince George's County Genealogical Society (accessed 7 January 2017).
  15. Genealogy in Talbot County Free Library (accessed 13 September 2015).
  16. Dollarhide and Bremer, 97.
  17. Research Topics at the Pennsylvania State Archives in Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission (accessed 23 December 2013).
  18. Dollarhide and Bremer, 95.
  19. About Our Collections in Historical Society of Pennsylvania (accessed 27 December 2013).
  20. About the Library and Collections in Historical Society of Washington, D.C. (accessed 7 January 2017).
  21. Research in Historical Society of Washington, D.C. (accessed 7 January 2017).