Genealogy Research & Services

APLS offers Genealogy services through in house collections, online searchable databases, which can be accessed with your Evergreen Library Card, and on premises searchable databases.

Reference Service

Staff at APLS will answer queries sent to us through the mail as time allows if specific names and time periods are identified. Please provide the following information:

  • Your name, address, and telephone number
  • A limit on cost if you would like to specify the limit
  • Your query including the name(s), time period, and type of information requested

Reference Service Costs

  • $10.00 per hour in quarter hour increments + $.20 / copy

More detailed information may be sought through the Adams County Genealogy.

Genealogy Collections

APLS genealogy collections house many indexes, directories, and historical records to aid in your family research in both Decatur and Geneva. The Decatur location focuses on family histories, directories, and periodicals from the northern part of the Adams County. Our Geneva location hosts many family histories and records from the southern part of Adams County. Reference librarians at both locations are available to help you find what you need to get started!

Vital Records

The Adams County Health Department stores birth and death certificates, the indexes to these records are housed at APLS-Decatur. Birth records are not open to the public.  You may see an individual record if you know the name and date, but the public may not search the birth record books. Death records are open to the public and individuals may search them.

Marriage records from 1836 to the present are at the Adams County Clerk's Office in the Court House. Indexes to marriage records 1845-1920 are at the Adams Public Library-Decatur. Estate records, and the estate index are also in the Clerk's Office.

Resource Links

Below is a list of links we have found to be useful. You may access these links without your APLS Library Card.

Adams Co WWII Veterans
Service banners became popular in WWI as a way to designate that a son was serving in the military. The number of blue stars indicated how many sons (or other ...

Adams County Genealogy
Part of the INGenWeb project, this site allows search by surname, photos, archived military records, and more

Allen County Public Genealogy Center
The Genealogy Center is a North American collection. You will find books and microfilmed records for all 50 U.S. states, Canada and some material for Mexico.

Quickly and simply search more than 4.3 billion photos, newspapers, and vital records to get information about your ancestors.

Census Finder
Directory of census records.

Cyndi's List
A comprehensive, categorized & cross-referenced list of links that point you to genealogical research sites online.

Eastman's Online Genealogy Newsletter
Useful blog articles about genealogy research. Newsletter available.

Latter Day Saints Genealogy website

Find Your Family Tree
Build your family tree, access to over 300,000 genealogy records

Genealogy Inc.
Links to state & county government, state & county genealogy links. It also explains the Family History and genealogical records available for the State and each county within that State.

Genealogy Links
Links to genealogy resources, categorized by state.

Genealogy Reference Desk
Links to genealogy resources, tips, vital records links.

IARA Digital Archives
Access to public record archives.

Indiana Genealogical Society
username: adamspls password: 46733-1676 Remember to include the dash/hyphen in the password, or else it won't work.

Our staff continues to work hard to provide the best tools and resources for your genealogy research.

World Genealogy World Genealogy Project.

Worldwide Topsites
Links to genealogy resources.

WWW Virtual Library - American Indians
Index of Native American Genealogy Resources on the Internet.

Online Collections

These collections are either owned by APLS or can be used with an APLS Library Card.

Adams County Public Records

Adams County Public Records

This collection makes available some Adams County records through a project of the Adams Public Library System. Current records include statistical reports by township from the Adams County Assessor’s Office digitized by the Library.

Adams News Index

Adams News Index

An index (2000- ) of the Decatur Daily Democrat local news and local obituaries (1860- ).

Ancestry Library Edition

Ancestry Library Edition

Access to census records, vital records, city directories, military records, immigration records, and more. Free access to these resources is limited to searching within the library’s networks.



HeritageQuest® Online is a comprehensive treasury of American genealogical sources rich in unique primary sources, local and family histories, and finding aids.

APLS - Decatur
128 S 3rd St
Decatur, IN 46733
F 260-724-2877
Mon, Tue, Wed, Thu: 9am - 8pm
Fri: 9am - 5pm
Sat: 9am - 1pm
Sun: 1pm - 5pm

APLS - Geneva
305 E Line St
Geneva. IN 46740
F 260-368-9776
Mon, Tue, Wed, Fri: 10am - 5pm
Thu: 10am - 8pm
Sat: 9am - 12pm

The Adams Public Library System serves all people of the Decatur and Geneva communities by acquiring, organizing, and providing access and guidance to a wide variety of information and materials to help fulfill the intellectual, educational, social, and recreational needs of this community in an atmosphere that is welcoming, respectful, and businesslike.

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