Online research for Elmira Newspapers


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Here is a step by step guide to finding years available online for Chemung County Newspapers on NYS Historic Newspapers.  I have also included some other search strategies for local newspapers.

We currently have 1891-1907 of the Elmira Gazette online through NYS Historic Newspapers.

Here is a link to their homepage:
To view a full list of Chemung County papers online, please click on Chemung County in the NYS map.
To the right of the page, you will see the titles and the years the title was in publication. Question marks are often used if it is unclear when the paper ceased publication.
This is due to many assorted reasons.  If you would like to see a list of the issues digitized and available online right now, please follow these steps:
First, from the Chemung County Page, click on the title you would like to see.
In this case, we are selecting “The Elmira Gazette.”
On the right of the page, you will see a thumbnail image of a newspaper and a little calendar icon with a prompt that says “Browse: calendar view.”
The “Calendar View” prompt is clickable.. Please click on it. That will take you here:

On the left side of the page, you will see “Issues For: [YEAR}.
The year for the Elmira Gazette starts at 1891.
You can click on the year and a drop-down box will appear which shows you all the years online that are available.
In this instance, you will see that the years available digitally for this title go up to 1907.

For researching the Star-Gazette online, the Star-Gazette website has an archives function. This is a personal subscription page that does cost money to view the full articles. However, one can still lookup things on the site and get thumbnails of articles complete with date and page number without paying to subscribe.
To find the Star-Gazette Archives feature, go to their home page,  and click on “Archives.” This will take you here:

The Star-Gazette is also available online through a paid personal subscription through
Institutional subscriptions that include digital access to this title are available through ProQuest, but run upwards of $4,000 per year for access.
This proves to be unsustainably cost-prohibitive for the Genealogy Department to offer to patrons.

We offer full-text of the Star-Gazette on microfilm to patrons who come in to research.
They can procure dates and pages numbers from the Star-Gazette archives site, or from searching the newspaper index through the library StarCat catalog.
To search for local history articles on the StarCat catalog:
1. Go to the StarCat page:
2. Type in keywords, or the [LastName, FirstName] of the person you are searching for.
3. I typed in elmira airport.  I got to this link with all the newspaper results for the airport:

4. To limit your search to just newspaper articles, click on “Newspaper” under “Material Type” in the left-hand column.

We also offer a distance research service to out-of town researchers.  The directions on how to do this can be found here:

NYSHNPlease do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions on this or any other matter.

All the Very Best,

Maggie Young

Genealogy and Local History Librarian

Steele Memorial Library
Chemung County Library District
101 E. Church St.
Elmira NY 14901
P: (607)733-8603
F: (607)733-9176


Problems with Ancestry Library Edition


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Click on the link for a slideshow on how to find related records in Ancestry Library Edition.

Problems with ancestry library edition

Another problem on the search function–the algorithm seems to be ignoring location info. For example, if I put in a specific city I may get 20 matches from other states before the one for my search, though all have the same name. It seems to be forgetting to prioritize my results by location. This seems to be a recent, but pervasive, change.

If you see strange results in your searches, please copy the URL of the page and send it to me and I can notify the good folks at Ancestry.  (

Workarounds in Ancestry Library Editio!

New to the collection: Summer 2018

Callensburg: A Small Community

Interviews with people from Callensburg and Licking Township, Clarion County, PA. 1978.

The German church records of Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania

Vol 2: 1792-1804

Vol. 4: 1813-1820

History of Venango County, Pennsylvania, Volumes I & II

Eighteenth century emigrants from the Northern Alsace to America

Fabian families of Bucks County, Pennsylvania.

Church record of the Christ (Maxatawny or De Long’s) Reformed Church at Bowers, Berks County, Pennsylvania, (1765-1832)

Canton, Pennsylvania, 1795-1976


Canton Tea Company and Union Fire Company Number Two, Fourth and Olive Street, Northwest Corner. 1848.

History of the county of Westmoreland, Pennsylvania

Research outline, Canada

Corbin collection: Reproduction of typed manuscript list of contents of the Corbin Manuscript Collection of genealogical materials relating to the Corbin family of Massachusetts from 1650 to 1850 which was compiled by Walter E. Corbin and his wife, Lottie S. Corbin. NOTE: Microfilmed rolls ARE available for viewing at the Steele Memorial Library and are in the process of being added to the catalog.

[Newsletter] / Erin Historical Society Newsletter of the Erin NY Historical Society, 2003-2010.

Huckleberry Finn as idol and target : the functions of criticism in our time

British origins of American colonists, 1629-1775



Civil War resources in genealogy and local history


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by United States. Naval History Division.
by McPherson, James M.


by Wright, J. D., 1938-
by McPherson, James M.
by Twain, Mark, 1835-1910.
by Townsend, Thomas S. (Thomas Seaman), 1829-1908.
by New York (State). Andersonville Monument Dedication Commission.
by McKay, C. E. (Charlotte Elizabeth)
by Horigan, Michael.
by New York (State). Monuments Commission for the Battlefields of Gettysburg and


English & Welsh Genealogy Events


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Made possible by a generous donation from the Friends of the CCLDindex



Fri. July 13, 1-3pm — English and Welsh Parish Records 1538 -1837.

From 1538-1837 parish records contain all the significant life events of 98% of the population, in addition, original documents often contain additional personal comments from the recorder.    We will examine the historical parish jurisdictions and the personal and cultural impacts of the church/state law that governed most citizens regarding baptism, marriage, burial, and many other life events.  (Level Beginner to Intermediate)

 Sat. Sept. 15, 1-3pm — English &Welsh Civil Registration: 1837 – Present.

July 1837 saw the responsibilities of the church passed over to the government.  Registration of life events became a civil responsibility.  This class will examine the birth, marriage and death indexes, transcriptions, and certificates, how to access and understand the document numbers and order a copy of the original certificate on-line from the General Registry Office (GRO).  (Level Beginner to Intermediate)

 Sat Oct.13, 1-3pm — English & Welsh Census Pre-1841, 1841-1911

Family structure, occupation, immigration, emigration, and place of birth are often contained in the UK government census.  These important documents are a staple for family historians. We will examine how they were compiled, by whom, as well as accessing helpful guides to try and locate the apparent absentees and lists of missing census. (Level Beginner to Intermediate)

Call 607.733.9175 to register.

$5 suggested donation


About the Presenter

Liz Pearson is a native of England whose foray into genealogical research started about 35 years ago when an attempt to identify her grandmother turned into her very own family history addiction.

Since then, she has spent thousands of hours combing the myriad English and Welsh archives in the UK, the US, and online for herself and others. Liz is an expert on ecumenical (1538-1837) and civil law (1837-Present) and the broad spectrum of Parish Chest Records. She holds several research qualifications and is an associate member of the Society of Genealogists in London, England. Liz now volunteers and teaches for the Pinellas (FL) Genealogical Society as well as offering professional genealogy services in English and Welsh family history. Liz is also a photographer and likes to spend her spare time capturing images of elusive wild orchids and uncooperative fauna.


The Steele Memorial Library is located in downtown Elmira NY at 101. E Church St.

From I-86 (Route 17) take exit 56 for Elmira. Continue on 352 W (Church St) heading west. We are located at the intersection of Clemens Center Parkway and Church St. Parking entrances can be found off of church St, and off of 1st St via the Clemens Center Parkway. There is parking behind the library as well as by the entrances.

The programs will be in the large meeting room of the Steele Memorial Library.

Coffee, tea, and light refreshments will be served.

The library is open until 5pm on Fridays and Saturdays. Program attendees are welcome to explore the genealogical holdings upstairs, and with ID, peruse on the library computers.


The Steele’s Genealogy Collection:

Come early, stay late, and research!

 New York State Vital Statistics Index: Deaths and Marriages 1880-1964, Births 1880-1937


Local newspapers: 1835 to present

New York Times: 1851 to Dec 2007

All NY County Histories and Atlases



1790 – 1880 for all states

1890 (special census only) veterans

1900-1930: New York and Pennsylvania



1880 & 1900 NY & PA


Chemung County State Census

1855 indexed, 1865, 1892, 1905, 1915, 1925 1825, 1835 paper records

1855 Census on Microfilm for Allegany, Schuyler

Steuben and Yates Counties

Woodlawn Cemetery Records 1868-2016

St. Peters & Paul’s Cemetery records 1890-2016

Forest Lawn Cemetery records 1938-2016

Elmira Presbyterian Church records

Catholic Church records 1848-1910

Mortality schedules: 1850-1880 NY & PA



Marriages & Death prior to 1960

Cemetery records up to 2004 ON CD





Also in our collection

Star Gazette Article and Obituary Index

1975-present. Accessible through the online library catalog. See Genealogy Department web page for instructions!

Elmira Newspapers Births & Deaths indexed

1830-1969 Marriage and Death Notices

1957-1969 Births

Obituary newspaper Indexes 1898-1969

Other places of interest in Elmira

Woodlawn National Cemetery, 1825 Davis St

Mark Twain’s Grave: Woodlawn Cem., 1200 Walnut St

Mark Twain’s Study @ Elmira College, 800 Park Place

Newtown Battlefield: 2346 County Rd 60, Elmira, NY

Arnot Art Museum: 235 Lake St

Chemung County Historical Society: 415 E Water St

Elmira Prison Camp: 699 Winsor Ave


Downtown Restaurants

Pepper Pot Café: 311 College Ave.

Beijing Gardens: 145 W. Gray St.

Los Panchos: 250 W. Water St.

Turtle Leaf Café: 315 E. Water St.

Horigans: 265 Davis St.


Vincenzo’s Pizza





Recognizing Women’s Right to Vote in New York State at the Steele Memorial Library.


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Come see the traveling exhibit, Recognizing Women’s Right to Vote in New York State at the Steele Memorial Library from May 9–May 25, 2018!  Visit the accompanying online exhibit from NY Heritage HERE.


Description: Women suffragists picketing in front of the White house. The first picket line – College day in the picket line line, 1917
Source: / Library of Congress reproduction # LC-USZ62-31799
Author: unknown
Date: 1917
Permission: PD-US

New York State is celebrating the centennial of women gaining the right to vote in New York State on November 6, 1917—three years before the 19th Amendment was passed and women throughout the United States gained the right to vote.  The South Central Regional Library Council and the Empire State Library Network has developed an exhibit, “Recognizing Women’s Right to Vote in New York State.” This exhibit looks beyond the traditional Women’s Suffrage narrative and explores the history behind the movement that made New York State such an important place in the fight for Women’s Suffrage.

Each exhibit includes five poster/panels, showing a different theme:

Woman Suffrage before 1848 – Explores voting in New York State before the Seneca Falls Convention in 1848, including in the colonies and among the Haudenosaunee people.

Women’s Rights Activity up to 1848 and the Seneca Falls and Rochester Conventions – Women and men organized to restore the right to vote to women, among other rights.

Pop Culture Suffrage – Suffragists displayed brilliance when it came to promoting their cause, and packaged their message in consumer goods, created songs and theater performances, formed parades and processions, and traveled through rural areas, knocking on doors.

Anti-Suffrage – Most women and men believed that equality for women would lead to the destruction of the state. The Anti-suffrage movement engaged in public debates, created publicity materials to counter those of the suffragists, and argued that support for Women’s Suffrage was unpatriotic, especially during World War I.

Race and Diversity – The early Women’s Suffrage movement embraced women of all races, but overt racism in the later years led some suffragists to argue for the inclusion of all races winning the right to vote—including those effectively denied their voting rights.

A more detailed, companion online exhibit will be available at New York Heritage in Spring 2018 at

We hope to see you at the Steele Memorial Library in May. Thank you for using your local library!


Suffragists march in October 1917, displaying placards containing the signatures of over one million New York women demanding to vote.  Date October 1917 Source The New York Times photo archive. Author Unknown. wikidata:Q4233718


New to the Collection

Black Indians: A Hidden Heritage: Using the records kept by mixed Indian and African-American colonies located in South, Central, and North America, the author traces the development and contributions of these biracial societies, which formed as a result of white oppression.


Black Indian genealogy research: In 1907, the Indian Territory became the State of Oklahoma. To qualify for the payments and land allotments set aside for the Five Civilized Tribes, the former slaves of these nations had to apply for official enrollment, thus producing testimonies of immense value to today’s genealogists. The book shows where to find and how to use the Indian Freedman Records, discusses Black Indians and Tri-Racial groups from the Upper South, and has added two lists of family names: Freedman Surnames from the Final Rolls of the Five Civilized Tribes, and Surnames of Tri-Racial families of the South


[Dingman family : family record]: This work concentrates on Morley and Cotton family members in Athens, PA. Munn family members in Bradford County, PA. Dingman family members in PA.


[Kreitlow family : family record]: This work concentrates on 4 separate families: Kreitlow, Timm, Schmidt, Loll


Memories are renewed since we last met : 25th class reunion, Holiday Inn, August 11, 1973: Description based on booklet from 25th class reunion of the class of 1948 held on August 11, 1973.

Includes 1973 address list of class members

New York State barge canal system : Cayuga-Seneca, Oswego, Erie and Champlain Canals:

“Aids to navigation corrected to 3 Aug 1965”



[McLaughlin family history]:

Photocopies, charts, articles, and photos in 3-ring binder. James McLaughlin (1800-1858) of County Donegal Ireland, Hannah McLaughlin, County Donegal Ireland (1805-1861). Allied names: Luedeman, McCarty, Harrison, Bixby, Bulkley, Brion, Buckley, Frost, Harrison, HendrickMelville, VanNortwick, and many others.
This work concentrates on McLaughlin family members in Corning, New York State.

[Baker family history]: Photocopies, charts, articles, and photos in 3-ring binder. The Baker Family of the Southern Tier of NY:. Steuben, Tompkins, Schuyler, and Chemung Counties. This work concentrates on Baker family members in Steuben County and surrounding areas in New York State

Vanderpool newsletter

Old Sussex Almanack : newsletter of the Sussex County Historical Society

Japan through American Eyes: “From the Cleveland Public Library, John G. White Collection of Orientalia.”  Francis Hall lived in Elmira. Click HERE for the link to the collection of his papers housed a the Chemung County Historical Society. Francis Hall is also the subject of an article in the latest issue (as of Feb 2018) of the Chemung Historical Journal.



[Vincent family] / Vincent, K.R.: Three-ring binder contains historical and biographical material pertaining to members of the Vincent family descended from William Vincent (1729-1807) of Rhode Island.

[Ellison family history]: Photocopies of in 3-ring binder. This binder contains photocopies of genealogical material pertaining to the Ellison family of Steuben and Schuyler Counties in New York State, descended from Thomas Ellison Jr and Sarah Hoag of Hornby NY. Ancestors of the Ellison line with the surnames Parker and Miller are also included. The Parker line begins with John and Elizabeth Low Parker of Rhode Island. The Miller Line begins with Thomas and Martha Combs Miller of Steuben NY. The connecting ancestors are Catherine L. Parker Miller (b. 1893) of Steuben County NY and Viola Catherine Miller Ellison (b. 1914) of Schuyler County NY.

[Seeley family letters.]  Looseleaf binder contains letters and photocopies of genealogical material pertaining to the Seeley family of England, Connecticut, New York (State) and Pennsylvania.



[Lain family reunions and scrapbook]: Photocopies, photos, and newspaper clippings in 3-ring binder. This work concentrates on Lain family members originating with William Lain in Orange county in New York State.


New to the Collection: February 2018

Christ Lutheran Church, Murrysville, Westmoreland County; a.k.a. Hankey’s Church; parish records 1796-1884 part I

St. John’s Reformed Cemetery, Harrolds, Hempfield Township, Westmoreland County, 1890-1999

Westmoreland County history : from a Mt. Pleasant Township perspective

The student guide with the Indian supplement for the Richard’s atlas of New York State.

The descendants of Andrew Eisaman (1768-1884) [sic] and Catherine Schuck (1778-1868)

First Reformed Church, United Church of Christ; Greensburg, Westmoreland County, parish records, part 1, 1819-1876

Notices by German and Swiss settlers seeking information of members of their families, kindred, or friends : inserted between the years 1742 and 1761 in the Pennsylvanische Berichte, and between the years 1762 and 1779 in the Pennsylvanische Staatsbote

A short history of Westmoreland county : the first county west of the Appalachians

The German immigrant in America : F.W. Bogen’s guidebook

Woman’s roots : the history of women in Tompkins County

Ithaca : a brief history

The Germans in colonial times

True stories of Elmira, New York, Volume 2

St. John’s Reformed Church : (now St. John’s United Church of Christ), Mt. Pleasant Township, Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania, parish records, 1821-1960

Zion Lutheran Church, Germano, German Township, Harrison County, Ohio : parish records, 1805-1945

Church records of the Upper Milford Reformed Congregation now the Zion’s Reformed Church at Zionsville, Lehigh County, Pennsylvania (1757-1809) from the library of Dr. and Mrs. Glenn P. Schwalm

Historical publications of William Arter Zundel, 1878-1949 : articles concerning the history of Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania, with particular attention to the Sewickley Settlements, centering at Harrolds in Hempfield Township, begun in 1760

Indiana County, PA cemeteries : plus History of Brush Valley Lutheran Church

The journal of Pastor Gabriel Adam Reichert : for the years 1822 through 1837 as the Lutheran pastor in Indiana and Armstrong counties, and missionary in Clarion, Mercer, Clearfield, Crawford, Jefferson, Venango and Huntington counties in western Pennsylvania


Venango County, Pennsylvania, cemetery records and early church histories


[Martin and Carstarphen : family histories]

[Stickler family history]

[Tallon family history]

[LaForte family history]

[Robbins/Robins family history]

[Vincent family]

Elmira pamphlets and clippings

[Eggleston family : family record]

St. John’s Reformed Church, Harrolds; Hempfield Township Westmoreland County; parish records

Denmark Manor Lutheran Church, Franklin township, Westmoreland county, Pennsylvania : later known as St. John’s Lutheran Church, Boquet, parish records

Listing of inhabitants in 1778 : Cumberland County, Pennsylvania

The descendants of Wilhelm Altman, 1630-1682 of Hempfield Township, Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania

Knox centennial : 1876-1976

History of Old Zion Evangelical Lutheran Church : in Hempfield Township, Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania, near Harrold’s

Hempfield Zion Lutheran Church, Hempfield Township, Westmoreland County : parish records, 1880-1955

[Scheibner family : family record]

[Wheeler family : family record]

Venango County, Pennsylvania, cemetery records and early church histories

St. John’s Lutheran Church, Mt. Pleasant Township, Westmoreland County

Brush Creek Reformed Church, Hempfield Township, Westmoreland County

Zion Church Lutheran and Reformed; East Huntingdon Township, Westmoreland County; parish records 1778-1884

Mount Union Lutheran Church, Elderton, Plum Creek twp., Armstrong co. : parish records

St. Jacob’s Lutheran and Reformed Church, South Bend, Armstrong County, Pennsylvania : parish records 1820-1885

Harrold Zion Lutheran Church, Hempfield Township, Westmoreland County : parish records

The Reformed and Lutheran congregations in Plumcreek Township, Armstrong County : later known as St. Thomas Reformed Church and Christ Lutheran Church of Gastown, parish records, 1826-1867

Early German Reformed Churches; northern Westmoreland County, southern Armstrong County, 1822-1859; pastoral records of William E. Weinel

Brush Valley Lutheran Church : Brush Valley Township, Indiana County, Pennsylvania : parish records

St. Paul’s, Seanor, Church Lutheran : Hempfield Township, Westmoreland County parish records

St. John’s Lutheran Church, Boquet, Penn Township, Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania : parish records