General Information
How to Request Copies

The staff of the Southern History Department will normally respond within 48 hours to written requests for information. Requests must be specific (i.e. please send me a copy of pages 119-121 from The Georgia Black Book by Robert Scott Davis). Unfortunately, our level of staffing does not allow us to provide more extensive research nor to search microfilmed materials such as censuses and military records.

There is a $5.00 research fee for each copy request, and we can send the copies to you by e-mail or mail. For electronic copies, we send your copies as an e-mail attachment in the PDF file format. Mailed photocopies cost additional 30¢ per page to cover the cost of the copies and postage. No more than 20 pages will be copied. Payment is due before copies are sent.

Requests should be mailed to:

Southern History Department
Birmingham Public Library
2100 Park Place
Birmingham, AL 35203

or submit request online via Ask A Librarian
(include mailing address with your request)

Requests for newspaper articles and obituaries:

Requests for copies of newspaper articles and obituaries are handled by our Microforms Center and should be submitted via Ask A Librarian. You will be contacted regarding the availability, cost, and procedure for mailing pre-payment and requests for these items.

A list of the holdings of microfilmed newspapers is available here. For most of the listed titles, a compiled index is not available. Historical minority and speciality papers were extracted from the master list and made available here.

Tips on Genealogical Research
Birmingham Public Library Genealogical Resources
Genealogy Classes and Workshops

Introduction to Genealogy
Want to learn how to do genealogical research? Come to an introductory class that will help get you started on your genealogical journey. The staff in the Southern History Department covers such topics as vital records, courthouse and church records, and the Federal Census. You can browse the handout to determine if this class is right for you. No registration is required. The same content will be covered in each of the classes that are offered on either Wednesday afternoon or one Saturday morning each month. Classes are conducted in the Southern History Department, Birmingham Public Library, First Floor, Linn-Henley Research Library. For more information, call (205) 226-3665.

Genealogy Computer Classes
The Southern History Department teaches several genealogy computer classes including Ancestry, Fold3, FamilySearch, FindMyPast and more. Please look at the calendar to see what is being taught this month.

Beyond the Basics of Genealogy
The staff of the Southern History Department often teaches in-person and virtual genealogy classes. Popular topics include Intro to Genealogy, Census Records, genetic genealogy, and military records. Please follow us on Facebook ( or check the Library's events calendar for upcoming classes.

Other Genealogical Resources

Soundex Converter
The Soundex system is a method of indexing names in the 1880, 1900, 1910, and 1920 US Census. Soundex can also aid genealogists by identifying spelling variations for a given surname. This form will return the soundex code for the entered surname, plus other surnames/spellings sharing the same soundex code.

Page Last Modified: 4/4/2024 12:37 PM