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

Politics and Government

  • Ahern, Michael Loftus. Political History of Chicago. Chicago, 1886.
  • Alien Registration Records, 1940-1944. From U.S. Citizen and Immigration Services. In response to distant threats of war, the United States launched the Alien Registration Program in July of 1940. Pursuant to the Alien Registration Act of that year, every alien resident in the United States had to register at their local Post Office while aliens entering the country registered as they applied for admission. Alien Registration requirements applied to all aliens over the age of fourteen, regardless of nationality and regardless of immigration status.
  • Alien Voters 1864 - Cook County, Illinois. Chicago Daily Tribune, Sunday, April 17, 1864. USGenWeb Illinois Archives.
  • Alien Voters 1864 (part 2) - Cook County, Illinois. The Chicago Daily Tribune, Sunday, April 17, 1864. USGenWeb Illinois Archives.
  • Allswang, John M. A House for All Peoples: Ethnic Politics in Chicago, 1890-1936. Lexington, KY: University Press of Kentucky, 1971.
  • Bennett, Fremont O. Politics and Politicians of Chicago, Cook County and Illinois. Chicago, 1886.
  • Chicago Bureau of Statistics and Municipal Library. The Chicago City Manual. Chicago, 1908. (List of government officials and description of their duties)
  • Chicago City Council Proceedings, 1833-1871. This database provides access to the working papers of the Chicago City Council for the period before the Great Fire. Until their rediscovery in 1983, these files were presumed to have been destroyed in that catastrophe. The database contains entries for 35,650 different files. Each entry shows the title of the file and a control number containing the filing calendar or fiscal year, file number, filing month and day. Includes only a few personal names and is of limited value to genealogists.
  • Chicago Police Department Homicide Record Index, 1870-1930. The Chicago Homicide Record Index was compiled by Michelle Adams, an intern for the Illinois Regional Archives Depository at Northeastern Illinois University in Chicago. The 12,705 records in the database were extracted from the Chicago Police Department Homicide Records. Precisely when and how the Chicago Police Department's Homicide Records were compiled is uncertain. What is known is that Police Department personnel made a concerted effort to list all of the homicides within the city of Chicago between 1870 and 1930.
  • Cook County Assessor's Office: Property Search  Search by property index number and property class.
  • Cook County Circuit Court: Records and Archives. Record searches, copies and certified documents.
  • Cook County Clerk's Office: Genealogy Records. The Cook County Clerk's office provides non-certified copies of vital records for the purpose of genealogical research.
  • Cook County Coroner's Inquest Record Index, 1872-1911. The Cook County Coroner's Inquest Record Index was compiled by Michelle Adams and Milan Jovcic, interns for the Illinois Regional Archives Depository at Northeastern Illinois University in Chicago. The 74,160 records in the database were extracted from the Cook County Coroner's Inquest Records. The inquests included in this index cover the period from December 1872 to November 1911. The volumes for the period from October 1879 to July 1880 (668 inquests) and from May 1888 to October 1888 (720 inquests) are missing. The Cook County Office of the Medical Examiner does not have any inquest records prior to December 1872. Records after November 1911 are in the custody of the Office of the Medical Examiner.
  • Cook County, Illinois - Free Public Records Links.
  • Crime In Chicago 1907. Cook County IL Archives History.
  • Fiske, Barbara Page, editor. Key to Government in Chicago and Suburban Cook County. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1989.
  • Flinn, John Joseph. History of the Chicago Police. New York, 1973.
  • Gilbert, Frank. Centennial History of the City of Chicago: Its Men and Institutions. Chicago, 1905.

  • Gilbert, Paul T. and Charles L. Bryson. Chicago and Its Makers. Chicago, 1929.

  • Green, Paul M. and Melvin G. Holli, eds. The Mayors: the Chicago Political Tradition. Carbondale, IL: Southern Illinois University Press, various editions.
  • IRAD Local Governmental Records Holdings Database. This database provides a listing of the local governmental records held by the Illinois Regional Archives Depository (IRAD) system. Local governmental records include those from county, city, town, village, and township levels throughout Illinois. Numerous offices are represented from these levels. The record holdings of the IRAD system include over 5,400 different record series. For each record series the following information is included: depository, accession number, title, county, beginning date and ending date. By selecting "Cook" in the "County" field of this database, researchers can generate a list of Cook County records held by IRAD in Chicago.
  • Leidenberger, Georg. Chicago's Progressive Alliance: Labor and the Bid for Public Streetcars. DeKalb, Illinois, Northern Illinois University Press, 2005.
  • Lepawsky, Albert. Home Rule for Metropolitan Chicago. Chicago, 1932.
  • Municipalities in Cook County. There are 138 municipalities (Cities, Villages and incorporated towns) within Cook County's 956 square mile area (227 sq. miles=City of Chicago, 573 sq. mile=Suburban cities and municipalities and 156 sq. miles=Unincorporated areas). 
  • NARA's Great Lakes Region (Chicago). Maintains retired records from Federal agencies and courts in Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, and Wisconsin.