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Local History & Genealogy ReReference Services (Researcher and Reference Services)
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Tours and Research Orientations

Onsite Orientations at the Library of Congress

Orientation classes, taught by reference librarians, are offered regularly. The "Resources for Genealogical Research at the Library of Congress" course is designed as a basic introduction for genealogical researchers using the Library of Congress collections and is taught on select Wednesday mornings and Saturdays. Each session includes an introduction to genealogical research: what it is and what it involves; the Local History and Genealogy resources and collections: compiled family histories, local histories, city directories, telephone books, the reference collection, how to search the Library's online catalog, and an overview of automated resources on the Internet. How to locate published census schedules and indexes, ship passenger lists, military service and pension records, military lists and registers, cemetery records, church records and registers, court records, land records, and registers of births will be included. The orientation classes are offered by the Local History and Genealogy reference staff on the following Wednesday mornings.

Individuals requiring accommodations for any of these events are requested to submit a request at least five business days in advance by contacting (202) 707-6362 or [email protected].

Orientation sessions will run from 10:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Research orientation sessions are held in the Research Training Center, room LJ-139B of the Thomas Jefferson Building. For schedule of dates, additional information, or to register for a class, see the Local History and Genealogy orientation Registration page.

Please come to the Library by 9:30 a.m. to apply for a Reader Registration Card (picture identification required). The Reader Registration Card is available in Madison Building, Room LM 133 (in the Newspaper & Current Periodicals & Newspaper Reading Room), and on the first floor of the Jefferson Building, Room LJ 139.

Anyone who has questions about the Library's services to genealogists should call the Local History & Genealogy section at 202-707-3399 or contact us via Ask a Librarian.

The Humanities and Social Sciences Division also periodically offers a 90-minute research orientation for first-time users. This course is a general introduction to the Library of Congress collections and resources.

Online Orientations

Online research orientations:

Additional Research Orientation Classes

In addition to Saturday orientations, some Library of Congress reading rooms offer research orientations or tours specific to their collections and services. For more information about these orientations, including schedules and registration information, please visit the web pages listed below:



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  March 8, 2022
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