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American Ancestors

In-Library Use Only

Hundreds of searchable databases including vital records, cemetery transcriptions, marriage and death indexes, family histories, and more.

Ancestry Library Edition

In-Library Use Only

Access more than 4,000 databases and 1.5 billion names. Includes digitized images of the U.S. Federal Census from 1790 forward, vital, church, court, and immigration records, as well as record collections from Canada and other areas.

Arkiv Digital (in-library use only)

The largest private provider of Swedish church records and other historical records online. Includes church records, court records and inventory of estates. Access it from the Other Programs folder on the desktop of the public computers at the library.

Chicago Tribune Historical Archive

Contains 2.5 million obituaries and death notices, front pages from 1900 through 1984, and selected articles from the newspaper’s clipping files. Paid ads are excluded.


History and genealogy archives featuring original documents and photographs, including military records, city directories, and naturalization records.

Genealogy eBook Collection

Search across 800 titles in genealogy and family history, including records from Colonial America to the Civil War as well as a large selection of how-to books. In addition, access many titles that relate to specific ancestral ethnicities. See our guide to the collection for information on creating an account and tips for searching within multiple eBooks.


From Newsbank – Explore your family history with the premier collection of U.S. obituaries and death notices for in-depth genealogical research from 1704 – today. Includes deep coverage from all 50 states, hard-to-find content from the mid 1900’s, and original obituary images.


Online database of over 25,000 books, the U.S. Census (1790-1930), and many other collections created for professional and amateur genealogists. Users can find information on their ancestors as well as information on American culture.

Sanborn Maps

In-Library Use Only

Large scale plans of a city or town drawn to the scale of 50 feet to an inch. Features an archive of maps from 1867-1970.

Where to write for Vital Records


Illinois Vital Records

Obituaries and Cemeteries

If you still can’t locate an obituary, try writing to a local library or historical society near your ancestor’s final home, or contact the cemetery where your ancestor was buried (sextons may keep copy of obituary).

Passenger Lists


National Archives Naturalization Records: Early naturalization records were filed in the counties of the states. In 1907, the process went national and records were kept at the federal level.


Local Genealogy Societies

National Societies

Family History Centers


Genealogy Appointments

Digging your roots? We can help you get started or further your research. Call 847-362-2330 X1144, to set up an appointment with one of our genealogy specialists.

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Cook Memorial Public Library District

Install Cook Memorial Public Library District

Install this application on your home screen for quick and easy access when you’re on the go.

Just tap then “Add to Home Screen”