Family History and Genealogy Services

Listed as one of the "50 Top Sites for Genealogy Research" by Internet Genealogy, Aug/Sept 2012

Illinois Genealogy Resources

Chicago and Cook County

Communities, Housing & Architecture

  • Abbot, Edith. The Tenements of Chicago, 1908-1935. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1936.

  • Abrahamson, Julia. A Neighborhood Finds Itself. New York: Biblo and Tannen, 1971.

  • Bach, Ira J. Chicago on Foot. Chicago: Follet Publ. Co., 1977.

  • Bailey, George, ed. West Side Stories. Chicago: City Stoop Press, 1992.

  • Bigott, Joseph C. From Cottage to Bungalow: Houses and the Working Class in Metropolitan Chicago, 1869-1929. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 2001.

  • Bruegmann, Robert. Sprawl: A Compact History. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 2005.

  • Chicago Ancestors. Using Google Maps as its base, the Newberry library has mapped the location of churches, homicide statistics, Chicago neighborhood information, photos and more. Information on the site includes:
    • Church locations for Roman Catholic and Lutheran Churches along with information on where to access the church records.
    • Locations of schools whose yearbooks are held by The Newberry Library or the Chicago History Museum.
    • Bibliographies for each of Chicago's 77 community areas.
    • Homicide records covering 1912-1917 and eventually will include 1910-1930.
    • Photos of Chicago buildings.
  • The Chicago Fact Book Consortium. Local Community Fact Book Chicago Metropolitan Area. Chicago: The Consortium, 1984. Includes brief histories of each community.

  • Chicago's Geographic Information System - Internet Mapping. Locate street addresses, wards, neighborhoods, schools.

  • Chicago Historical Society. Documents. History of Communities, Chicago. Research under the direction of Vivien M. Palmer. 6 volumes. Chicago, 1925-1930. Typescript. Consists of oral histories, excerpts from newspapers, pamphlets, and scrapbooks.

  • Chicago Historical Society. Index to the American Contractor's Chicago Building Permit Column, 1898-1912. Searchable by architect, original owner, or street name.

  • Chicago Imagebase (Maps). The Chicago Imagebase is a Web-based project aimed at enhancing knowledge about the built environment of the Chicago region. On this site you will find a wide variety of images and other data along with information on how to use this data to study the city.

  • Chicago Plan Commission. Forty-four Cities in the City of Chicago. Chicago: The Commission, 1942.

  • Chicago Street Name Changes.

  • City of Chicago, Department of Development and Planning. Historic City: The Settlement of Chicago. Chicago: The Department, 1976.

  • City of Chicago Landmarks Commission Chicago Historic Resources Survey. Information about pre-1940 buildings of architectural or historical interest. Search online by street name, neighborhood, architect, construction era or style.

  • Cohen, Stuart and Susan Benjamin. North Shore Chicago: Houses of the Lakefront Suburbs, 1890-1940.  New York: Acanthus Press, 2004.

  • Colbert, Elias. Chicago Historical and Statistical Sketch of the Garden City. Chicago, 1868.

  • Cook County Assessor's Office. Search by address or neighborhood. Property value information, approximate age of the building, recent photo.

  • Danzer, Gerald A. and Lawrence W. McBride. People Space and Time, the Chicago Neighborhood History Project: an Introduction to Community History for Schools.  Lanham, MD: Published for the Chicago Metro History Fair by the University Press of America, 1986.

  • De Young, Robert W., compiler and Janice Helge, editor. The Greater Roseland Area of Chicago: Van Vlissingen School 1893-1999. South Suburban Genealogical and Historical Society, 2005.

  • Drury, John. Old Chicago Houses. Chicago, 1941.

  • Garb, Margaret. City of American Dreams: A History of Home Ownership and Housing Reform in Chicago, 1871-1919. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2005.

  • German Street Name Changes in Bucktown, Part I.  By Jack Simpson
  • German Street Name Changes in Bucktown, Part II. By Jack Simpson.
  • Grossman, Ron. Guide to Chicago Neighborhoods. Piscataway, New Jersey: New Century Publishers, Inc., 1981.

  • Harris, Neil. Chicago Apartments: A Century of Lakefront Luxury. New York: Acanthus Press, 2004.

  • Hayner, Don and Tom McNamee. Streetwise Chicago: a History of Chicago Street Names. Chicago: Loyola University, 1988.

  • Heise, Kenan and Mark Frazel.  Hands on Chicago. Chicago: Bonus Books, 1994.

  • Hirsch, Arnold R. Making the Second Ghetto: Race and Housing in Chicago 1940 to 1960. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1983.

  • Holt, Glen E. and Dominic A. Pacyga. Chicago: A Historical Guide to the Neighborhoods. The Loop and South Side. Chicago: Chicago Historical Society, 1979.

  • Hoyt, Homer. One Hundred Years of Land Values in Chicago, 1830-1933. Chicago, 1933.

  • Keating, Ann Durkin. Chicagoland: City and Suburbs of the Railroad Age. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 2005.

  • Kornblum, William. Blue Collar Community. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1974.

  • Lindberg, Richard. Passport's Guide to Ethnic Chicago: a Complete Guide to the Many Faces and Cultures of Chicago. Lincolnwood, IL: Passport Books, 1993.

  • Longstreth, Richard, editor. The Charnley House: Louis Sullivan, Frank Lloyd Wright, and the Making Chicago's Gold Coast. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 2004.

  • A Look at Cook. Maps and Boundary Descriptions for Wards, Townships, and Enumeration Districts.

  • McClellan, Larry A. Local History South of Chicago: A Guide for Research in the Southern Suburbs. University Park, Illinois: Northeastern Illinois Planning Commission and Governors State University, 1987.

  • McNalis, John. Chicago Streets. Shows street name changes.

  • National Register of Historic Places: Cook County.

  • Neighborhoods
        Beverly Hills
        Calumet Region
        Chatham-Grand Crossing
        Chicago Loop
        Douglas/Grand Boulevard
        East Garfield Park
        East Garfield Park
        Edgewater Historical Soc.
        Humboldt Park
        Hyde Park
        Hyde Park Historical Soc.
        Irving Park
        Jefferson Township
        Lawndale-Crawford ("Mud Lake area")
        Little Village
        Maxwell Street Market
        Morgan Park
        Near West Side
        Near West Side
        North Lawndale
        North Lawndale
        Rogers Park
        Rogers Park-West Ridge Historical Soc.
        South Chicago
        South Shore
        West Garfield
        West Ridge
        West (Near West) Side
        West Town
        Wicker Park

  • Newberry Library. Chicago Neighborhood Research Guide.

  • 1909 Street Re-numbering Guide for Chicago.

  • 1911 Chicago Loop Street Numbering Changes.

  • Pacyga, Dominic A. and Ellen Skerrett. Chicago: City of Neighborhoods: Histories and Tours. Chicago: Loyola University Press, 1986. Includes numerous photographs and maps.

  • Pacyga, Dominic A. and Charles Shanabruch. The Chicago Bungalow. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 2001.

  • Palmer, Vivien M. Social Backgrounds of Chicago's Local Communities.  Chicago, 1930.

  • Plan of Re-Numbering City of Chicago. Shows house number changes that impacted most of the city in 1909.

  • Samors, Neal & Doyle, Mary Jo & Lewin, Martin & Williams, Michael. Chicago's Far North Side: An Illustrated History of Rogers Park and West Ridge. Rogers Park/West Ridge Historical Society, 2000.

  • Satler, Gail. Two Tales of a City: Rebuilding Chicago's Architectural and Social Landscape, 1986-2005. DeKalb, Illinois: Northern Illinois University Press, 2005.

  • Seligman, Amanda. Block by Block: Neighborhoods and Public Policy on Chicago's West Side. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2005.

  • Thompson 1830 Plat of Chicago.

  • Warren, Elizabeth. Chicago's Uptown. Chicago, Loyola University, 1979.

  • Washington, Sylvia Hood. Packing Them In: An Archeology of Environmental Racism in Chicago, 1865-1954. Charlotte, North Carolina: Lexington Books, 2005.

  • WPA. Federal Writers' Project. Chicago and Suburbs 1939. Evanston, IL: Chicago Historical Bookworks, 1991, reprint edition.

  • Your House Has a History: A Step-by-Step Guide to Researching Your Property. Chicago: Chicago Department of Planning and Development, 1998.

  • Zorbaugh, Harvey W. The Gold Coast and the Slum. Chicago, 1929.