Genealogy & History
Finding Your Roots at Swan Library...
start your research with us!
  Emma Achilles
Miss Emma Achilles, Swan Library's First Librarian

Orleans County Specific

Orleans Co. Historical Assn.

Orleans County Genweb

Pioneer History of Orleans County

Orleans County Almshouse Burials

(Sampubco indexes, wills, naturalizations and guardianships for New york State & several other states. You can order copies.)

American Local History Network

Heritage Quest Online

General Genealogy Sites

Family Search


(Forums for surnames, states and counties, etc.)

Ancestry Message Boards
(Ancestry message boards (FREE) similar to genforum)

Cyndi's List
(Cyndi's list of genealogical sites on the internet)

'How to'
Resources for Beginners


Copyright Fundamentals for Genealogy

Cyndi's List Beginners

Cyndi's Handy Online Starting Points

Cyndi's List - Citations in Genealogy

Family Search -
How to Start Your Family History

Family Search -
Genealogy Word Lists
Genealogy Learning Center
Abbreviations, Definitions & Glossary

National Archives -
Beginning Your Genealogical Research

National Genealogical Society -
Suggestions for Beginners

USGenWeb -
Help for Researchers

Ellis Island Passenger Search


GenCircles - Search the Global Tree

U.S. Census Bureau

Books (both circulation & reference)

Basic how-to genealogy books are found in the 929s in both the circulating stacks and reference.

Local History
Local history books are found on the local history/genealogy table or in the local history collections upstairs, in the Curtis Room. Most histories have indexes. Gazetters, directories, and phone books are upstairs; ask the main circulation desk for assistance.

Census/Cementery Records
Census and Cemetery records are on the Internet at the Orleans County Genweb site, but also are in paper form in the library. Burial listings exist for all 80 cemeteries in Orleans County. These are in loose-leaf binders in the Curtis Room. Ask at the main circulation desk for assistance. Transcriptions of the microfilm census are found in the Biography room.

Newspapers, census records and some church records are on microfilm. The papers begin in the 1820s and continue to the present. For obituaries you must know, at least, month and year of death. There are no indexes. Holley papers are also included.

Local Genealogies
Local genealogies completed by other researchers are housed in the Curtis Room. Indexes to these genealogies are found on the local history/genealogy table. A staff member can retrieve specific genealogies from the Curtis Room for you.

Oral Histories
In the 1970s the Orleans County Historical Association conducted audiotape interviews of many Orleans County residents. These tapes have been transcribed and are available to researchers. An index of names and subjects exist for this collection. Ask the main circulation desk for assistance with these.

Community Resources
Albion is the County Seat for Orleans County; therefore other resources are near at hand.

County Offices
Across the street on Court House Square are the County Court House and County Clerk's Office. In the Court House you will find access to the Surrogate's Office. This office houses the wills and probate papers. At the County Clerk's Office you can have access to deeds, some plat and survey maps, original census books, etc. The County Historian's Office is at 34 East Park St. (Across Park Street from the County Clark's Office on the corner of East Park & Platt St.) The historian, C.W. Lattin, can be reached at 585.589.4174. June - October you can also use 585.589.9013, which is the Cobblestone Museum. Mr. Lattin is the Museum Director. There is voicemail at both offices.

New York State has a unique network of village, city, town, county, and borough historians. A list of Orleans County historians can be obtained at the front desk. (Information on other Counties can be obtained at the Rootsweb site or at the Association of Public Historians website.

Other Associations and Societies
The Orleans County Genealogical Society has a website and can also be contacted at: P.O. Box 103, Albion, NY 14411 or at 585.682.3311.

The Orleans County Historical Society has a website and can also be reached at: P.O. Box 1285, Albion, NY 14411

The Cobblestone Society Resource Center which is the library at the Cobblestone Museum and can also be contacted at: P.O. Box 363, Albion, NY 14411; at 585.589.9013 or at:

NOTE: Out of Town Researchers
If you are traveling, do research in Swan Library and find you need further assistance after returning home. You may e-mail either of two of our Reference Librarians who assist in genealogical questions. For genealogical questions e-mail Dee Robinson at or Cheryl Mowatt at You may also mail questions to: Swan Library, 4 North Main Street, Albion, New York, 14411. Attention either Dee Robinson or Cheryl Mowatt.

Out of Town? Traveling to Swan Library to do your research?
Go to our Library Information Page for library hours and driving directions.





Swan Library, 4 North Main Street, Albion, New York 14411 - Telephone: 585.589.4246 - Fax: 585.589.2473