The Local History Room

The Downtown Branch of the library offers researchers an extensive local history collection. This collection specializes in the history of Houston County and surrounding areas, family histories, standard reference works, census records, microfilm of the Dothan Eagle Newspaper from September 24th, 1909-Present, and other genealogical materials.

Please note: Reference, Local History, and Microform materials CANNOT be checked out. They are for in-house use only; patrons may make photocopies of these materials for use outside of the library (printing charges apply). For Microfilms, a microfilm reader is available for use at the Downtown Branch. Please inquire at the Downtown Branch’s Circulation Desk for more information. 

HeritageQuest

HeritageQuest

HeritageQuest Online combines digital, searchable images of U.S. federal census records with the digitized version of the popular UMI Genealogy & Local History collection and other valuable content.

You must have a library card in good standing* to access this resource from outside the Downtown and Westgate Branch libraries.

World Vital Records

Search over 5 billion Family History and Genealogy records, and 28 million family trees. Access key collections: U.S. Federal Census images and indexes from 1790 to 1940; military records; enhanced Social Security Death Index (SSDI) records; millions of newspaper articles; unique, exclusive local and world collections.

You must have a library card in good standing* to access this resource, regardless of location.

Ancestry

Discover your family history and start your family tree. Try free and access billions of genealogy records including Census, SSDI & Military records.

This resource can only be accessed from within the Downtown and Westgate Branch libraries.

*For a library card to be in good standing, it must: 1) not be expired; 2) not have bills/fines exceeding $20.00, and; 3) not be manually barred from the system.

When you attempt to login to a resource which requires your library card number, that resource will inform you if your card cannot be used. It may state that your card can’t be used for one of several reasons:

  • If the resource states that your card has expired, your library privileges have expired and you will need to come in to a library branch and renew your privileges. Please see our Get a Library Card page for more details, including information on required documentation to renew your card, and validity periods for different card types.
  • If the resource states that your card has been blocked, you have fines and/or bills in excess of $20.00. You will need to pay these fines/bills before you can use online resources again. Please speak to a staff member for more information.
  • If the resource states that your card has been barred, your library privileges have been suspended as a matter of library policy. This is usually temporary and due to missing or invalid information in your account (for instance, if we find that we do not have a valid address, phone number, and/or date of birth on file). However, a card can be barred for other reasons, including legal action and as a result of a patron being permanently banned from DHCLS property. If your card has been barred, please speak to a staff member to determine why your card has been barred.

If you receive another message or error when trying to access a resource, please speak to a member of library staff.