The Lee County Library System recognizes that genealogy is the fastest growing hobby in the country and maintains a department dedicated to helping patrons discover their roots.
Located at the Fort Myers Regional Library, the Genealogy Room contains a vast array of print, microform and digital resources along with trained staff to provide assistance to skilled and novice researchers, alike.
Additionally, as a FamilySearch affiliate library, patrons have access to the considerable collection of genealogical and historical record available through the FamilySearch Microfilm Ordering Service.
Location & Hours:
|Fort Myers Regional Library|
2450 First St.
Fort Myers, FL 33901
|Monday-Wednesday (9 a.m.-8 p.m.)|
Thursday (9 a.m.-6 p.m.)
Friday and Saturday (9 a.m.-5 p.m.)
For questions about genealogy programs, materials or assistance with research, please contact Bryan L. Mulcahy at
239-533-4626 or via email at
Upcoming Programs & Events
See the calendar of upcoming Genealogy programs
Subscribe to the Genealogy Research Tip Newsletter
Getting Started With Genealogy
Genealogy is the field of study that explores the origins and descent of individuals and families. The focus is identifying individuals and their specific family relationships. As the body of knowledge expands, researchers are able to place an individual and/or family in their accurate historical setting and fill in the biographical details of the lives of individual family members. Here are a couple of documents to help you get started:
Genealogy Digital Resources
In Library Use only
- Ancestry Library edition (in-library use ONLY)- Census data, vital records, immigration and emigration records, family histories, military records, court documents, directories and photos (from ProQuest). This resource is only available while inside the library.
Lee County Library Resources
- Fold3- Easy access to a growing collection of U.S. military records that include photos, personal documents and more. Provided by ProQuest, this e-source is restricted to use in the Fort Myers Regional Library.
- Heritage Quest Online- A collection of 25,000+ family and local history books that are searchable. Every page of each book can be downloaded or copied. Material is included from all 50 states and Canada. The complete U.S. census from 1790-1930 is also available. It can be searched by name, place of birth, age or ethnicity.
- Genealogy Connect- Includes the "how-to" of genealogy research in addition to genealogical materials in specific subject areas. These reference materials once were accessible only in the library, but now you can have 24/7 access to them online.
- Allen County Public Library Genealogy Center, Fort Wayne, Indiana- One of the largest digitized genealogical collections available, incorporating records from around the world.
- Bonita Springs Genealogy Club- Official site of the Bonita Springs Genealogy Club
- Charlotte County Genealogical Society- Starting point for Charlotte County genealogical research, including Charlotte County Library’s holdings and indices to county wills and guardianships
- Christine's Genealogy Website- Portal to online resources for African-American genealogical research
- Cyndi's List of Genealogy Sites on the Internet- A collection of more than 81,000 links that have been organized and cross-referenced in over 140 categories.
- Dead People Server- A website dedicated to identifying which celebrities have passed away, and refuting rumors about those who have not.
- E-podunk- Enter the name of just about any community in America and E-podunk tells you all about it, including details about the place's population and events held there.
- FamilySearch- Created by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, this site offers research guidance and a database search for deceased ancestors. NOTE: Patrons must use Chrome or Firefox to access this resource; it no longer supports Internet Explorer.
- Federation of Genealogical Societies- Blanket organization with over 500 state and local genealogical societies as members.
- Florida State Genealogical Society- The Florida State Genealogical Society (FSGS) provides Florida source materials through the publication of books, the quarterly publication, The Florida Genealogist, and the newsletter, Florida Lines. Research services are available to those who are seeking a Florida Pioneer Certificate. Educational opportunities are given through the annual conference and workshops.
- Genealogical Society of Collier County- An organization for the advancement of genealogical education and research in Collier County.
- Lee County Genealogical Society- The Library and the Lee County Genealogical Society share a partnership to provide access to the Library's genealogy resources. The LCGS website contains research sources for Lee County, Florida as well as other geographical areas of interest. The Society hosts the only searchable online listing of the genealogy reference material (the Genealogy Shelf List) housed at the downtown Fort Myers-Lee County Public Library. The Society has also abstracted Lee County Deaths published in the News-Press between 1930 and 1997. This searchable database contains over 65,000 entries. Society information, genealogy forms, helpful facts and tips as well as information on the Society’s activities can be found at their website.
- Lee County Library Genealogy Shelf list- Online listing of reference material hosted by the Lee County Genealogical Society.
- Lee County Past to Present- This Southwest Florida Pioneers Historical Society site includes Lee County public records, obituaries, and information on local cemeteries.
- National Genealogical Society- Considered by many professionals to be the premier national society for everyone from the beginner to the most advanced family historian. The NGS provides online and a home study course in the field of research, conducts yearly seminars, and offers a multitude of services.
- National Vital Statistics System- Links to the different states and information on where to write for birth, death, marriage, and divorce certificates.
- Sanborn Fire Insurance Maps of Florida- A provision of the University of Florida Digital Collections, this collection of structure maps can help users put a figure on property damages for insurance purposes.
- Social Security Death Index- Contains names, birth dates, death dates, social security numbers and other information on more than 60 million people.
- Southwest Florida Pioneers Historical Society- A non-profit organization comprised of volunteers working to create an online center for genealogical research pertaining to Lee County Florida. The purpose of this organization shall be to gather and share genealogical and historical information at no charge via the internet.
- USGenWeb Project- This comprehensive site provides links to all the state genealogy Web sites which provide links to the counties. There are special projects which include putting all U.S. census data online, transcribing cemetery tombstone information, and genealogy for kids. There is also a guide to doing genealogy research.
- Utah Genealogical Society- The Utah society sponsors the annual Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy which has become the foremost annual educational conference nationwide. The society works in close cooperation with the Family History Library in Salt Lake City.
- Western Reserve Historical Society - This is the third largest genealogy collection in the United States (Cleveland, Ohio). Use the Library Collections Search to probe published and unpublished materials; the Museum Collections Catalog to search for artifacts; and the Digital Collections to browse all WRHS digital content (images, text and video).