Della Lang Local History & Genealogy Room

The Della Lang Local History & Genealogy Room of the Jefferson County Library District is located at the Northwest Branch, 5680 State Road PP, High Ridge, MO 63049. An experienced staff provides services to a full range of patrons, from beginners to experienced researchers. Because of the collection’s size and continuous growth, the information below is brief. Specific titles can be identified in the library’s online catalog. 

Past Interviews of Northwest Jefferson County Locals by Della Lang – Newly Digitized

Local Historian, Della Lang conducted multiple interviews during the 1980s and 1990s. The majority of those she interviewed had connections to northwest Jefferson County, Missouri. When listening to the audio recordings, be aware that Mrs. Lang started the tape in mid- subject. She began the interview and then after the interviewee seemed comfortable speaking, Della started the tape.

Click on this link to hear the interview(s).          Click here for an index to the interviews listing the names of the subjects.

Online Databases

Patrons with a valid library card have access to several valued online genealogical websites. Heritage Quest and Fold3 are accessible at any of the three branch location or from home via the library website. Ancestry-Library Edition is only available at the three library locations. The Jefferson County Library also offers free wireless internet for patrons. 

Newspaper Index Database
The Newspaper Index Database (NIDB) indexes names of Jefferson County (Missouri) residents found in local historical newspapers that are microfilmed and housed in the Northwest Branch Special Collection. The index includes names found in articles relating to items of genealogical interest. Births, deaths, marriages, probate, divorce, and other items of importance to the genealogist are included. Please be aware that there are some articles with local names not included, such as political, school-related, and many social events. New entries are added as time allows.

Start your genealogy searching here: includes records from the United States Census; military records; court, land, and probate records; vital and church records; directories; passenger lists and more!

Access to Ancestry Library Edition is provided through the generous support of the Jefferson County Genealogical Society and the Friends of the Northwest Branch Library.


Original historical documents collection that features military records, city directories, Native American archives, historical newspapers, naturalization documents and much more.

This collection assembles every available US federal census; family genealogies; local histories; and more!

Newspaper Source

Full text articles from national and international newspapers and selective regional newspapers.
Newspapers database

NEW - This extensive database provides online access to 5,600+ historical newspapers from nearly 60 locations in the US, plus Canada, England, Ireland, Northern Ireland, Australia and Panama. Numbering over 200 million pages, the World Collection is a prime resource for genealogy and historical content.

St. Louis Post Dispatch

NEW - Find information covering the St. Louis metropolitan area including community issues and events, obituaries, business, education, government, sports and more from (1988-present). 

Family Histories

The collection contains hundreds of compiled genealogies which range from multi-volume works to a few bound related family group sheets. Many are specific to Jefferson County; however, others are from families from the surrounding counties and around the nation. 

Jefferson County, Missouri Resources

More than 6,000 printed volumes are testimony to the department’s effort to collect and have accessible publications and microfilm. Hundreds of historic local photos, and some one-of–a-kind manuscripts / items pertaining to 
Jefferson County have been added to the collection. 

A wealth of information can be found in our Local History Articles


Jefferson County Historical Photos Collection  
Click on the arrows on the images to the left to see more or
click here to view the albums of digital images in
different areas within the county

Indexes and Guides:

St. Louis, Missouri Resources

The adjoining county of St. Louis played an important role in the growth of Jefferson County and many residents moved easily from one county to the other.  The collection includes several hundred books on the area.

Missouri & U.S. Collection

The department has a large collection of genealogy and history materials from the state of Missouri, including county and town histories, compiled cemetery, church, land, probate, and naturalization records to name a few.  Resources are available for all fifty states, including a significant collection for the states of Illinois, Kentucky and Virginia.  Please access the library's online catalog to check for specific titles.

Other Countries

Although the department's collection focuses on North America, it still contains hundreds of printed volumes on other countries. Printed sources are limited mainly to guidebooks and references. However some sources contain individual names. Ample publications are available for the countries of French-Canada, Germany and the British Isles.

Research Requests

Branch staff can perform search of up to five names in any indexed genealogy materials held by the Northwest Branch for $10 non-refundable fee.  This fee, which must be paid at the time of the request, includes the cost of copies and postage.  Make check payable to Jefferson County Library.  

Submit requests in writing to:
Genealogy Department
Jefferson County Library, Northwest Branch
5680 State Road PP
High Ridge, MO 63049

Researchers as always welcome to visit the library, use our materials, and make their own copies.  B/W copies are 20 cents per page and color copies are 50 cents per page.

Interlibrary Loan

Interlibrary loan is available for books, microfilm and other materials with a valid Jefferson County Library card. Although some libraries, including Jefferson County Library, will not loan genealogical materials, copies of an index or a few pages can often be obtained for a nominal fee.  

FamilySearch affiliated Family History Center (FHC)

The Northwest Branch is a designated Family History Center via  This organization has recently ended their services on microfilm circulation to Family History Centers.  FamilySearch is also providing a new service that will deliver access to nearly all of their restricted image collections at affiliated Family History Centers such as the Northwest Branch.  


We welcome donations to the genealogy department. We accept donations of publications, family histories, photos and other items of genealogical merit. Contributions are a tangible and meaningful way to support the department, ensuring its tradition of excellence for the benefit of the community. Restrictions on size and shape do apply. 

JCGS Association 

The Jefferson County Genealogical Society is a recognized library partner. The group meets at the Northwest Branch of the Jefferson County Library on the third Saturday of each month. Throughout the years, JCGS has donated genealogy books, office equipment, and funds for online genealogy databases. In addition, when the Northwest Branch was under construction, JCGS provided funds for the display case in front of the genealogy department. 

Jefferson County Library Genealogy / History Programs

The library offers educational programs on a variety of genealogical topics. Classes are free and open to the public, and are listed on the library calendar

When You Visit

Preparing in advance will make your research trip more productive.  Feel free to call in advance to verify that the department is staffed the day of your visit. If you have any questions, email us at , or call 636-677-8186.