February is Love Your Library month. Are you using your library? Housed inside the great walls of libraries is a wealth of knowledge and discovery. Within the library are usually a reference room and a genealogy room filled with resources ready to be searched.


February is Love Your Library month. Are you using your library? Housed inside the great walls of libraries is a wealth of knowledge and discovery. Within the library are usually a reference room and a genealogy room filled with resources ready to be searched.

I’ve visited the genealogy rooms at Neosho, Pineville, Joplin, and Cassville and they all cater to researchers. The librarians welcome family history researchers and are ready to serve however they may if needed. All of the librarians are knowledgeable and they have cheered me on when I discovered something new about my ancestors.

I went to the Neosho-Newton County Library to see what genealogy books and magazines they offer genealogists. Remember, if you do not have the funds to buy genealogy books and magazines, most libraries carry those resources for patrons. These materials may be checked out from the library.  

Family Tree Magazine is offered at the library and I am a subscriber to this wonderful, fact-filled magazine. It is published bi-monthly and covers regular columns that are helpful to genealogists. The magazine usually covers four to five major stories along with 10 to 15 smaller topics. All of the stories are useful resources and provides links and websites to researchers. I highly recommend this useful magazine to anyone doing genealogy.  

Here are some of the genealogy books you will find at the library. Finding Answers in U.S. Census Records is exactly what the name implies. Sections include understanding the census, researching the individual censuses, to special schedules and special censuses. This is a well-written book that any family history researcher will find helpful.  

Another book, “The Genealogist’s Question and Answer Book,” covers vital records, census, military records, cemetery and funeral home books, immigration and naturalization records, land, probate and tax records as well as others.

The “Everything Online Genealogy Book” introduces you to emailing, websites, and searching the online databases for all aspects of genealogy.  The book has 19 chapters and is a good choice if you are a beginner genealogist.    

If you are searching for women family members, you might find The Hidden Half of the Family to be helpful. This is a sourcebook for women’s genealogy. The book is divided into the individual states with information pertaining to that particular state about marriage and divorce, suffrage, citizenship, property and inheritance, and important dates in history.  

Remember, as you learn more about your family, you can add important historical content to your family tree. Search the library for books that will help you learn more about the occupations and hobbies that your ancestors had. Read books about pioneers and their way of life, about early-day Missouri or other states to get an idea of how your ancestors lived.  

All of the local libraries in our four-county area boast wonderful materials in their stacks. And the best part is that they are free to use!  

In the genealogy room at the back of our library, you will find a wealth of reference materials from books to periodicals and everything in between.  However, these reference materials cannot be checked out. I can’t possibly list all the helpful books you will find in the genealogy room, so remember to love your library and pay them a visit!

FACT OF THE WEEK: a legacy is a gift of personal property by last will and testament.