Genealogy and Local History

Genealogy and

Local History

The Genealogy and Local History Department provides research-level resources and services in local history and culture, river history, genealogy, and African American history. Visit us in person.

CHPL has acquired the photo archive of the Cincinnati Enquirer for permanent preservation in the Library's collection. Help prioritize the digitization of these photos to view anytime on CHPL's Digital Library.

Featured Research Databases

The 1848 Panorama

On September 24, 1848, Charles Fontayne and William S. Porter set up their camera on a rooftop in Newport, Kentucky and panned across the Ohio River capturing on eight separate daguerreotype plates a panorama of the nation's sixth largest city, Cincinnati. Visit in person | Visit the digital exhibit, opens a new window

Make an Appointment

Want help with your genealogy or local history research? Sign up for a free appointment (up to 30 minutes) with our expert Librarians.

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Email is required for virtual appointments


Frequently Asked Questions

  • To locate your holds, log in to your account using the "Log In / My CHPL" link in the top right corner of the page.

    Once you are logged in, click on your name in the top right corner of the page. Then, in the dropdown bar under your name click "On Hold" under the "My Borrowing" category. This brings up your holds list.

    To place a hold, use our search to find a book or material you would like to check out. Then, click the green "Place a Hold" button.

  • Learn how to borrow a book or other physical material from the Library during COVID-19.
    1. Log in to the Library's website, then search our catalog to find the book or other physical materials you would like to borrow.
    2. Click the green "Place a Hold" button next to the item.
    3. Select one of our open locations where you want to pick up your book.
    4. You'll receive an email when your book or material is available for pickup. Read about Library safety during COVID-19.
    5. Visit the branch you selected to pick up your holds at, and check them out.
  • Use our curbside service to get the fast, friendly Library service you know and love without ever leaving your car. To take advantage of this service, call your local branch and our staff can arrange for materials to be checked out and delivered to you at a curbside location outside the Library building.

    For more information about available curbside service locations during COVID-19, please visit our Library Restart page.


Discover More: Genealogy

Recently added to our collection

Discover More: Genealogy

Recently added to our collection

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