248 Main Street
Johnstown, PA 15901
Phone: 814-536-5131

Mon-Tue: 8AM-8PM
Wed-Thu: 8AM-7PM
Fri-Sat: 9AM-4PM
Sun: Closed


Reference and Genealogy Services

Professional librarians provide reference assistance to patrons in the library and quick reference assistance over the phone. Reference librarians and other library staff help patrons locate desired materials within the library. They also give basic instruction in the use of the library's automated catalog and provide limited assistance with various computer programs.

The library maintains special circulating collections of test tutors and car repair manuals, a vertical file of special interest materials, and government documents acquired through its status as a Depository library. A collection of local high school yearbooks may be used within the reference area but not checked out.

Back issues of magazines and newspapers may be found at the Periodicals Department. The library has copies of the local newspaper dating back to 1853 on microfilm, the Ebensburg Sky on microfilm for 1831-1837, and census microfilm for Cambria County and surrounding areas from 1790 through 1930. Several microfilm readers and reader/printers are available.

A valuable collection of local history and genealogy materials is located in the library's Pennsylvania Room. This room contains information on the Johnstown floods, volumes of Colonial Records and Pennsylvania Archives, old city directories, county histories, selected cemetery records, local church histories, and family histories donated by generous researchers. In 2006 the Reference Department added online access to a website that may be accessed only from the computers within the library.

     Ancestry Library Edition is a very valuable resource for genealogy research that provides access to over 4000
     databases.  It covers both U. S. and U. K. information including: census records from 1790 to 1940, vital statistics,
     church and court records, the Map Center, immigration records, as well as American Genealogical Biographical
     Index, Daughters of the American Revolution Lineage Books, The Great Migration Begins: Immigrants to New
     England, 1620-1630, Social Security Death Index, Slave Narratives, World War I Draft Registration Cards,
and a
     strong Civil War collection.

The following websites may also be of interest to genealogists:                                                                               


Cambria County, PA Courthouse

Cambria County, PA Genealogy

Cemeteries in Cambria County

PA Genealogy Web Project


U.S. Genealogy Web Project

Library staff and volunteers have produced an index to obituaries and marriage notices in both the local newspaper and the Ebensburg Sky. Dates covered by the indexes are listed in the Genealogy and Reference Research Policy. Library staff will assist with genealogy research as detailed in the Genealogy and Reference Research Policy. A copy of the policy follows:


Genealogy and Reference Research Policy

As staff time allows, the reference department can provide photocopies of obituary and marriage notices from the Johnstown (PA) Tribune, it's successor, the Johnstown Tribune-Democrat, and the Ebensburg Sky. No other local newspapers are available for genealogical research.

Library volunteers have indexed death notices from the Johnstown papers for the years 1853 – to the present.  An index of marriage notices from the Johnstown paper is being compiled.  Please contact the library for more information. If you have an exact date of a marriage for the years not indexed and the marriage occurred in the area covered by the Johnstown newspaper, we will attempt to locate an announcement or article for you. The library cannot refund any money if your information is not found since the fee is charged for the time spent in research.

An independent researcher has posted on-line indexes to death notices in the Johnstown papers. Click here to link to the site.

Volunteers have also indexed death notices and marriage notices from the Ebensburg Sky for the years 1831 - 1837.

The following fees will apply for each name requested:
Photocopy from a year covered by library's index..............................…….$5.00
(Approximate year must be included with request)
Photocopy if EXACT date is known but is not indexed...............................$5.00
(Not indexed yet: Marriages between 1946 - 1977)
If the month and year of death is known but not the day, we can search through one month of microfilm for a charge…………………………………………$10.00

If you do not have an exact date for the years not covered by our indexes, library staff will NOT be able to search for you because this would involve going through a whole year of newspapers day by day.

Please include a check made out to Cambria County Library with your queries and mail to 248 Main Street, Johnstown, PA 15901.

News articles from the Johnstown Tribune and the Ebensburg Sky can be copied for a $5.00 charge only if the date is known since there is no index to the newspaper. Entire front pages of the paper cannot be supplied because the necessary equipment is not owned.

Only a limited amount of other research can be provided by library staff. Pages from city directories, telephone books, local histories, etc. can be photocopied for a $5.00 research fee if an exact citation is given. When time must be spent in searching for a topic, a $20.00 per hour charge will be incurred.

Library staff cannot search census reels or birth, marriage, naturalization, and indexes of will books on microfilm.

If you wish, in-depth requests may be sent to a local genealogy researcher. Although the library does not endorse or recommend genealogical or historical researchers, a list of people willing to do local searches can be provided upon request. Each individual will provide information on fees when contacted.

Library staff will be happy to assist you in using any genealogy or reference materials if you wish to visit the Cambria County Library. Check our hours on the library home page.


JohnstownBusiness.com (Business Networking Made Easy)


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