Batavia Public Library’s Local History Room, located on the main floor near the Reference Desk, contains extensive holdings of printed and microfilm materials about genealogy and the history of Batavia and Kane County; some histories of the Fox River Valley and Illinois; and numerous published guides to sources and how to do research in repositories elsewhere in the United States and abroad.
Collections in the Local History Room are for in-Library use only, but they are supplemented by similar printed materials in the circulating collection and by online reference databases.
Librarians at the Adult Services Reference Desk will be glad to help you locate materials that you need.
Newspaper microfilm includes the Batavia Herald (1893-1976), the Batavia Chronicle (1976-1990), the Kane County Chronicle (1990-present); the Aurora Beacon (1848-1913), with subsequent years to be added from time to time, and the Batavia Republican (1990-2000). There are occasional gaps in surviving files for early years. Other microfilm publications include Life (1963-1972, 1991-2000), New York Times Book Review (1992-2007), Newsweek (1964-2016), Time (1964-present), and U.S. News and World Report (1974-2011).
Census microfilm is available for Kane County for 1840, 1850, 1860, 1870, 1900, 1910, 1920, and 1930. Federal and state censuses for the United States for 1790-1930 can be accessed online at the Library through the Library’s reference databases HeritageQuest and Ancestry Library Edition. Patrons with a Batavia Public Library card can access HeritageQuest (but not Ancestry Library Edition) from their home computers.
Gaps in Our Holdings?
The Batavia Public Library would be glad to receive materials such as the following for our Local History Room:
- Batavia High School Yearbooks. We would like to have two extra copies for each year for backup in case of loss in addition to the copy on the shelf in the Local History Room. If you no longer wish to keep your yearbook or are settling an estate for a relative, please contact the Adult Services Reference Desk (630) 879-4777 x200.
- Published or typescript genealogies for current or former residents of Batavia and Kane County.
- Published histories for Batavia churches, organizations, and businesses.
- Other published accounts of life in Batavia, Kane County, and the Fox River Valley.
Additional Links: (coming soon)
- Batavia: What’s in a Name
- Take Root in Your Family Tree: Resources for Genealogy and Local History in the Batavia Public Library
- Genealogy and Local History subscription databases
- Genealogy web sites (from the Library’s Genealogy on the Internet class)
- Using Heritage Quest and Other Resources for Genealogy and Local History Research, A PowerPoint Tutorial by Robert L. Brubaker
Published or typescript genealogies for current or former residents of Batavia and Kane County.
Published histories for Batavia churches, organizations, and businesses.
Other published accounts of life in Illinois, Batavia, Kane County, and the Fox River Valley.
Take Root in Your Family Tree: Resources for Genealogy and Local History in the Batavia Public Library
Genealogy and Local History subscription databases
Genealogy web sites (from the Library’s Genealogy on the Internet class)