Sunday, November 29, 2020

Top 8 Resources to Researching in Kansas City

As most knows, the a3Genealogy blog is client and readers driven. The a3Genealogy team of researchers specialize in DNA, Irish, German, Eastern European, Swedish, British, African American, Jewish and Native American, (etc.) research in the USA and worldwide. So when we received the following letter asking for a blog on local Kansas City resources we were EMBARASSED!  No one has asked us to write on the home of our KC home base. So following are our top eight KC resources. There are more to come. Thanks Kim!

From New York to California, Louisiana to the Plains, the Great Lakes to the Gold Rush, Virginia to Missouri’s Little Dixie counties, or Pennsylvania to the Missouri Rhineland, our ancestors migrated through the Kansas City (KC) area using waterways, the stagecoach, overland trails, and the early railroad. They left behind a wealth of original documents, manuscripts, diaries, and journals. 

  1. 1.  NARA - Kansas City, MO.

    • U. S. Penitentiary, Leavenworth Records, RG129
    • Civil War Provost Marshal Records (Index on Mo State Archives website:
    • Alien Case Files (Index on or
    • Bankruptcy Records 
    • Native American Student and Removal Records
2. Midwest Genealogy Center of the Mid-Continent Public Library.


3.  Mo. State Historical Society: this Kansas City Research ceter is one of six in Missouri, but Kansas Citians have access to all of them: Cape Girardeau, Columbia, Rolla, St. Louis, Springfield. You can contact the Historical Society and request they send your research materials to the closest repository.  I often check to give leads through its indices and abstracts.

4.  County Court Records. This is not a blog about the court structures but I encourage researchers to learn.  It is at the Recorder of Deeds of Jackson County, Mo that researchers can access free marriage information, and undergo an online trace of land or house ownership. 


Let's learn about John Smith starting in Jackson County in 1832. What a easy start to distinguish the different John Smith family units in KC area. (Hint: there was more  than one John Smith living here at the time.)

With a click on the document link, the research can gather the details that often identifies family members, place of origin, and community relationships, etc.  It also can reveal political and religious associations (more places to research), financial and marital status.  

5.  Trowbridge Research Library: 
I would be remiss if I didn't include this Kansas City, Wyandotte County, Kansas repository. The Trowbridge Research Library is a wonderful hidden gem. Many of our KCMO ancestors married or are buried across the state line.
  • local cemetery records
  • marriage licenses 1849 - 1895
  • obituary index to 1993.
6.  National WWI Museum: Edward Jones Research Center


 The Edward Jones Research Center offers an Online Collections Database (see images above) and textural and artifacts from WWI.  This Smithsonian National WWI Museum has a wonderful research room with over 10,000 library titles.  To learn more be sure to view the video A Trip to the National WWI Museum and Memorial

7.  Kansas City (MO) Public Library: Missouri Valley Special Collections: For local online and research resources, this library is a must for KC area researchers. The a3Genealogy researchers have found the most unlikely ancestors named in the collections. 

8.  Merrill J. Mattes Research  The National Frontier Trails Museum, Independence, MO is the repository not to be missed to uncover your ancestors as the travelled west. This repository holds a treasure trove of diaries, journals, and manuscripts.

For more about Missouri genealogy resources and research, be sure to join me at the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy (SLIG) 2021 Show Me Missouri Session in January. 

Secret: Although I'm speaking on African American Research resources in Missouri, know that the same collection groups are used for all ancestors. No one lives in a bubble (ok...NBA yes). 

Happy Thanksgiving Weekend
Stay healthy and safe!

Kathleen Brandt  

1 comment:

  1. Kathleen,
    Great information in one place. Thanks for pointing these out/.