Houston area genealogists are lucky to have an excellent genealogical library right here in our city. As one of the Houston Public Library System’s special collections, the Clayton Library is recognized as one of the nation’s top genealogical research collections. It received this mark of distinction for its extensive collections covering the entire United States, as well as international sources for identifying immigrant origins in Europe, Canada, and Mexico. In addition, Clayton has 100% of its books in open stacks for public access. We house nearly 100,000 research volumes, hold over 3000 periodical titles, and have an extensive microfilm collection offering census, ship passenger lists, military records, and many local and state records not available in book format or on the Internet.
The Clayton Library Center for Genealogical Research covers a two city block area in the heart of the Museum District at 5300 Caroline Street. Originally comprising the genealogy section of the original Houston Public Library located in the Julia Ideson Building at 500 McKinney in downtown Houston, the genealogy collection was moved to the Clayton House in 1968.
The two story Main Building contains 23,000 square feet. The first floor houses the main genealogy book collection, two small conference rooms, seating for 100 customers, and work areas. The second floor houses an extensive microprint collection and the unique collection of over 15,000 published and unpublished family histories can be found here.
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