Genealogy Resources in the Charles F. Cummings New Jersey Information Center - Newark Public Library

Genealogy Resources in the Charles F. Cummings New Jersey Information Center

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Doing a genealogy project? Newark Public Library can help!

Please read the information below about NJ/Newark resources and if you have more questions submit them here (if an obit request here) we are always happy to help!

A fee of $15 for up to three obits,  or 10 pages of copies, and 30 minutes research will apply for out-of-state residents. There is a limit of three (3) obituary, death notice, or article lookups or 30 minutes research per month per patron.

If you have a project that requires more than 30 minutes of research please see our Gateway Service fees. We also recommend using a professional researcher.

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Just Starting?

Just starting? is free and has censuses and other records. We have in the library for public use which has many digitized records!

Newspaper articles & Obits

Obituaries, newspaper articles, and death notices:

Obituaries, articles and death notices are a major genealogical resource! In Newark papers these can be found at the library.  For obit requests please include: date of death (if possible) and full name of deceased & submit here. We have a list of digitized NJ newspapers and newspapers we have on microfilm which tells you where to find different papers. See “Newspapers” tab on our home page for more information. The most useful digital newspapers are the Star Ledger (back to 1945, incomplete) and Jewish Chronicle on GenealogyBank (paid resource) and the Jewish News here. The Newark News the biggest paper in Newark has been digitized through 1931. After that you must send in your question or come in!

The information files of the Newark News (index at the TOP of the page) also have hundreds of thousands of topics and may have a file on any prominent relatives such as police officers, judges, storeowners, politicans, principals, sports stars, etc.

Places to look for a date of death:

Vital Records

Vital Records:

The library does NOT have most vital records. We have a small amount of published early vital records listed here: Early Vital Records at NPL. 

There are a variety of digitized New Jersey vital records.

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If you find a record in the indices above you can request from the New Jersey State Archives (years available here) or more recent records from the Department of Health.

Newark records are also held at the City Hall Department of Vital Records, birth records starting at 1922.

  • Many cities, towns or counties offer vital records service in the city in a Department of Vital Records or Department of Health i.e. Montclair, Union County, Orange however, some like Jersey City do not, and you must go to Trenton.

Other Resources at the Library

City Directories:

City directories can tell where an ancestor lived at any given period. The CFCNJIC owns city directories for many towns in NJ. We have digitized Newark directories here  through 1957. See our  Inventory of Directories for other towns. We also have phonebooks for the early 20th c. to 1990 statewide.


If you have a famous ancestor or your ancestor had their picture in the newspaper, the library may have a picture of them. We also have photos from Al Henderson, Newark photographer Here is an index to the Al Henderson photos. See our home page for information about other photos.


Some books cover certain families or towns. See “Books” tab, our catalog, and our Guide to Genealogical Books. Yearbooks are also a helpful genealogical source. See our Inventory to Yearbooks and our digitized yearbooks (in progress). Note that we did not historically collect yearbooks. If we don’t have the yearbook you need there is information on other places you might try here.

Building Documents:

Deeds and mortgages can be found at the Essex County Hall of Records . A limited collection of building permits is at the Newark City Archives.

Misc Documents:

The library has a collection of city annual reports and other documents (our collection also includes non-city organizations like day care centers, social service organizations, and clubs) that may pertain to ancestors.  Further city documents can be found at the Newark City Archives.

Newark and NJ Maps:

The Newark Library has now digitized the majority of its historical maps and atlases. You can see a specific ancestor’s house on a map using our city atlases. We have city atlases from 1868, 1873, 1889, 1901, 1912 and 1926 that show every house (plus a county atlas from 1906 that only shows a small section of the city). We also have a Sanborn map updated through 1989 and earlier Sanborn maps on microfilm. Newark maps from our collection have been digitized by NJIT here and here, including some atlases and Sanborn maps.  A limited collection of Sanborn maps of Newark and NJ is available online for free through Princeton University. If you have access through a university, library, or workplace Digital Sanborn Maps is generally the best way to access Sanborn maps. Other digitized NJ and Newark maps can be found through Rutgers digital collection.


The best way to search for the archives of a particular school or church that an ancestor attended in Newark, or from a particular neighborhood in Newark is the Newark Archives Project. This website contains an index to archives from all over the United States. You can also search our catalog or our finding aids . We recommend contacting a local library if you are looking for non-Newark material.

Other Archives

Other Newark Archives:

Other Places In NJ with Genealogical Collections:

List of New Jersey Resources from GSNJ


By county:

More Resources

Research help:

Online Resources: 

Further links of interest