Genealogy and History
Online Resource Tutorials
The Garland Libraries offer video tutorials on how to use many of our online resources. Learn how to use Value Line, Mango Languages, Testing and Education Reference Center, Chilton Auto Repair and many more. Also included are tutorials on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Snapchat, Gmail, Google Photos, and Goodreads.
We have grouped several resource together to make them easier to find:
- Handbook of Texas
- Heritage Crossing
- HeritageQuest Online
- History Reference Books
- Texas Digital Sanborn Maps
- Texas Reference Center
Handbook of Texas
Online encyclopedia of Texas history, geography, and culture
- More than 23,000 articles on people, places, events, historical themes, institutions, and a host of other topic categories related to Texas.
- The Handbook of Texas is provided by the Texas State Historical Association.
Heritage Crossing is four quadrants of land at the intersection of Sixth and Walnut Streets in Downtown Garland. Currently, one quadrant is fully developed, consisting of the Landmark Museum located in Garland's 1901 Santa Fe Depot, a refurbished 1910 Pullman Coach Car and the 19th Century Tinsley-Lyles House.
The remaining three quadrants are in development stages and will contain walking paths with markers describing Garland’s history. Heritage Crossing is a significant representation of the importance of history and heritage to the City of Garland.
HeritageQuest Online is a comprehensive treasury of American genealogical sources—rich in unique primary sources, local and family histories, and finding aids. It delivers an essential collection of genealogical and historical sources—with coverage dating back to the 1700s—that can help people find their ancestors and discover a place’s past. The collection consists of several key data sets:
- U.S. Federal Censuses
- Genealogy and local history books
- Find a Grave indexed Cemeteries
- Revolutionary War Pension Files
- Freedman’s Bank Records
- The ProQuest™ U.S. Serial Set
- City Directories
- Military Records
- Immigration Records
- Public Records
- Social Security Death Index
- Maps and Photos
Resources recommended by the Texas State Library and Archives Commission (TSLAC):
Family Search, provided by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, offers free access to numerous historical record collections from around the world. This is an important source for census records, Freedman's Bank records, Native American census rolls, the U.S. Social Security Death Index, and marriage, birth and baptismal records from around the world. They also have a significant collection of family history books digitized from partner libraries, including the Allen County Public Library (IN) and the Dallas Public Library.
Notes: Access to FamilySearch records requires a free FamilySearch account. TSLAC has not reviewed this resource for accessibility.
Ancestry.com Texas allows free access to additional TSLAC records that have been digitized by Ancestry and those materials are made available to Texas residents. Note: This access requires the creation of a free Ancestry.com Texas account.
The Texas State Library and Archives Commission has several archival collections that have been digitized and are available for use:
- Index to Confederate Pension Applications
- Texas Adjutant General Service Records, 1836-1935
- Republic Claims
- Confederate Indigent Families Lists
- 1867 Voters' Registration
- Texas Convict Record Ledgers and Indexes
- Republic of Texas Passports
- Texas Adjutant General Service Records, 1836-1935
History Reference Books (Gale Virtual Reference Books)
Gale Virtual Reference Library is a database of encyclopedias, specialized reference tools and informational resources that all ages can benefit from using. These reference materials once were accessible only in the library, but now you can access them online from the library or remotely from home or school 24/7.
Historical reference books cover all facets of time from antiquity to present day history.
- Popular reference and informational titles in a digital eBook format
- Cross-searchable and printable as PDF's
- No need to checkout – just use it
- No waiting – unlimited simultaneous access
Texas Digital Sanborn Maps
Provide digital access to more than 660,000 large-scale maps of over 12,000 American towns and cities. Founded in 1867 by D. A. Sanborn, the Sanborn Map Company was the primary American publisher of fire insurance maps for nearly 100 years. No maps are consulted more in academic and public libraries. Sanborn maps are valuable research tools for geographers, social historians, urban specialists, genealogists, planners, local historians, architects, environmentalists, and anyone who wants to learn about the history, growth, and development of American cities, towns, and neighborhoods. Users of Digital Sanborn Maps have the ability to manipulate the maps, magnify and zoom in on specific sections, and easily print them out.
Texas Reference Center
A Texas specific product designed specifically for school and public libraries
- Periodicals, reference books, reports, and other content relevant to the state of Texas
- Over 100 full-text reference books