Genealogy Databases

The Central Arkansas Library System subscribes to a number of databases specifically for genealogy research or that can help you better understand the world your ancestors lived in. Some databases are available only at the CALS Roberts Library, while others are available at your neighborhood CALS library branch or accessible at home with your CALS Library Card.

Databases marked with the Arkansas State Library logo are provided via Traveler Access, a project made possible by a grant from U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services to the Arkansas State Library under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act. Additional state funds were provided by the Arkansas Department of Education.

These databases are only available at your CALS branch or at the CALS Bobby L. Roberts Library of Arkansas History & Art.

Ancestry Library Edition is the first stop for most genealogists on their family history journey. The site provides access to over 10 billion historical records. CALS subscription includes record for the United States as well as international records.

  • Census
  • Birth, Marriage, & Death
  • Military, Immigration & Travel
  • City Directories
  • Maps, Atlases & Gazetteers
  • Schools, Directories & Church Histories
  • Wills, Probates, Land, Tax, & Criminal Records

Civil War Newspapers

A collection of historical newspapers containing extensive local and national coverage of American culture, politics, and society from the Antebellum through Reconstruction periods.

CALS provides access to digital copies of the Arkansas Gazette (1819-1923) and the Arkansas Democrat (1878-1923) in addition to other Arkansas newspapers through

Social Security Death Index

The Social Security Administration Death Master File contains information on millions of deceased individuals with United States Social Security numbers whose deaths were reported to the Social Security Administration. Available through

African-American Heritage

A resource exclusively devoted to African American family history research. Includes such records as draft cards from World Wars I and II, the Freedman’s Bank, and the U.S. Census, as well as help finding other information sources.

 Arkansas Democrat-Gazette Historical Archive

Digital access (with CALS Library card number and PIN) to searchable, image edition issues of the Arkansas GazetteArkansas Democrat, and Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. This collection contains Arkansas Gazette (1867-1991), Arkansas Democrat (1947-1992), Arkansas Democrat-Gazette (1992-1994).

Bureau of Land Management

The Bureau of Land Management provides access to more than five million federal land title records from 1788 to today. Records include land patents, survey plats and field notes, land status records, control document index records, and tract books.

Dictionary of American Family Names

The Dictionary of American Family Names contains more than 70,000 of the most commonly occurring surnames in the United States, giving their comparative frequencies, linguistic and historical explanations, selected associated forenames, and occasional genealogical notes.

Encyclopedia of African American History, 1619-1895

Documents the African American experience from the arrival of the first slave ship to the death of Frederick Douglass–and shows how American culture, history, and national identity have been influenced by the experiences of African Americans.

Encyclopedia of African American History, 1896 to the Present

Traces the transition from the Reconstruction Era to the age of Jim Crow, the Harlem Renaissance, the Civil Rights Movement, up to and including the 2008 election of Barack Obama as the 44th President of the United States.

CALS Encyclopedia of Arkansas

A free, authoritative source of information about the rich history, geography, environment, and culture of Arkansas, launched by the Central Arkansas Library System in 2006. The CALS EOA contains thousands of entries and pieces of media related to Arkansas with new material being added weekly.

Fire Insurance Maps Online (FIMo)

An online digital collection of color fire insurance maps, real estate atlases, and similar land use maps for the state of Arkansas. Includes publications by Sanborn, Perris, Hexamer, Whipple, Baist, Bromley, Hopkins, and others.

Fold3 (formerly

A collection of over 60 million pages of historical documents and personal histories, including millions of records available from the National Archives and other institutions. Please note: certain features of Fold3 require the use of an Adobe Flash plugin unavailable on some mobile and tablet browsers.

Heritage Quest

Includes searchable images of U.S. Federal Census records, digitized family and local history books, an index to genealogical and local history periodicals, and other genealogy resources.