Genealogy – Heritage Room at Blasco

Genealogy – Heritage Room at Blasco

Searching for Your Ancestors?

The Erie County Public Library has a large amount of material that would assist your in your search for ancestors that lived in the Erie/ NW Pennsylvania area.

The Heritage Room is located on the second floor of the Blasco Library.


  • Collections include family histories, standard reference works, county histories, local history information and other resources. The general focus of the collection is Northwestern Pennsylvania and the surrounding tri-state area.
  • An obituary index is available for Erie newspapers that covers 1822 to the present. City directories are available for Erie beginning with 1853 and suburban (or Millcreek) directories beginning with 1957
  • Yearbooks are available for many Erie City High Schools, dating back to the early 1900s. .

Please note:  materials in this room must be kept at a constant temperature of 70 degrees. Please dress accordingly; a sweater or light jacket will help.

Computer Databases

The Library subscribes to and American Ancestors,  for in-house use on the Heritage Room public computers. Library staff also maintains links to a number of  useful Internet sites with genealogical information. The Library also provides in-house and remote access to the Library editions of HeritageQuest and Fold3.  A  list of  resources can be accessed by visiting the  Biography & Genealogy section on  Databases, eBooks & More.


Genealogical information located at the Blasco Library Heritage Room includes microfilms of the Erie newspapers, going back to 1822, Erie County censuses from 1800 to 1930, selected censuses for other Pennsylvania counties and selected states, The area has 10 microfilm reader/printers available for use. Use of the microfilm machines is on a first come first serve basis. Photocopies can be made for 10 cents per page.

If you have an Erie County Public Library borrower’s card, you can request census microfilms through the Library’s Interlibrary Loan program. You may also request books and photocopies through the Interlibrary Loan Department. Availability of these materials may be restricted by the owning libraries.

Microfilm Machines

Information by Mail and email

Search Obituary Index

As a service to patrons doing genealogical research, the ECPL has compiled and maintains a paper and an online obituary index for Erie County, Pennsylvania, from 1822 to present.

The Information Services staff can fulfill record requests for obituaries by mail or email. Please search the online obituary database index for your ancestors first. The fee is $5.00 per name requested; up to eight names can be included in each request. You will be billed for the research when the information is sent to you. Normal requests may take 2 to 4 weeks to be processed.

To use this service, please fill out the contact form below and “submit” or print the request form and mail it to the library. Include as much information as possible about the person(s) for whom you are searching. The more information you can provide, the better the chance we can provide you with the information you need. Please remember to include your own mailing address in your request.

ECPL cardholders can also find full-text obituaries online free-of-charge from 1999 to present by searching the library’s subscription to Newsbank.

ECPL staff will also conduct limited genealogy research using the resources available in the Heritage Room.  The charge for this service is $20 per hour.  Use the same form below to enter a name and date, using the comment box to give as many details as possible.  A staff member will reply to you about the viability of your research request. You are welcome to set a limit on number of hours of research, but you will be billed whether or not results are found.  Research requests may take up to 6 weeks to be processed.


You may contact the Library by mail at:

Information Services
Erie County Public Library
160 East Front Street
Erie, PA 16507

Or fax us at (814) 451-6907