New York

Discover you family history through historical newspapers at


Banner - Vital Check

Discover you family history through historical newspapers at
New York

The New York State Archives, like the state itself, is a large, sprawling, diverse landscape, with many wonders to behold.  But it's easy to get lost.  

To travel through the Archives, you might start your journey with the Archives' Digital Collections,  which are arranged by Topics:

  • Business and Labor
  • Environment & Landscape
  • Legal
  • Military
  • People, Groups, & Cultures
  • Politics
  • Transportation
A few favorites here are:

Industrialization and Child Labor

Environmental History Collection

Harlem Hellfighters WWI Muster Rolls

New York Lantern Slides Collection

Women's Rights in Early New York, 1643-1848

Native American Collection

You genealogical types can search for family members and other individual people in a large name index. This is one-stop searching on a large number of databases, including (for example):

  • Auditor Certificates Submitted by Disabled Revolutionary War Veterans Claiming Pensions and Audited Accounts of Pensions
  • Attica Correctional Facility inmate case files
  • Military Patents
  • Engineer and Surveyor Records of Surveys and Maps of State Lands

There are some Archive Exhibits online:

America's Civil War
Website gallery comprised of historical photos and documents from America's Civil War.

Erie Canal Time Machine
Web resource that examines the Erie Canal from its opening in 1825 to the creation of the Barge Canal System in 1918.

Global History and Geography
Historical images showing people and places as they appeared in the early twentieth century.

Electronic Schoolhouse/La Escuela Electrónica
Bilingual resource focusing on Latino history and culture in New York State. Includes lesson plans for teachers.

Legacies Project
Web resource that explores the history of Chinese and Latino populations throughout New York State. Includes lesson plans for teachers.

New York's Electoral College
Historical documents illustrate the Electoral College from the general election in November to the meeting of electors in December.

Throughout the Ages
Historical documents illustrate New York, U.S., and World History through a variety of topics. Includes lesson plans for teachers.

I also suggest you stop off at Excelsior, the main catalog of the New York State Library/Archives/Museum.  Note that there are several search options here, including one for Archives, a separate one for Digital Collections, and yet another for the Historical Documents Inventory.  I think you can get all online materials at once by clicking Search Entire Catalog, then Power Search, and then use the Location pull-down to select Online.  

Simple, eh?

More historical archives and research materials can be found at these excellent resources:

 Historical Newspaper Archives       

 Genealogy Tools                                US Historical Newspapers        

 European Historical Newspapers        International Historical Newspapers

Court Record Searches                        Public Records Searches 

Intelius - Public Records Information