Local History & Genealogy Resources

The James Ingram Room

This room houses the Genealogy, Michigan History, and Orion History collections. Included are books, videos, and vertical files which pertain to local and Michigan history, historical documents such as atlases, cemetery records, and other genealogical information, as well as census records and a microfiche reader.

The Orion Historical Society meets in the James Ingram Room on the second Monday of the month at 7:00 PM.

The North Oakland Genealogical Society meets in the James Ingram Room on the third Thursday of the month at 7:00 PM in March, April, May, September, October, and November. Their books and materials are accessible to library patrons.

James Ingram Room Print Collections

Genealogy Collections

Michigan History Collections

Orion History Collections

Digital Collections

Digital Image Collections

Ingram Historical Photos
Historic Cottage located at 120 Bellevue, Lake Orion, MI
Historic Local Cottages
Downed tree resting on damaged room of a house on Lake Street, Lake Orion.
2014 Orion Storm
Orion Veterans Memorial
Orion Veterans Memorial
Orion Library Photos

Digital Books & Newspapers

Lake Orion - Beginnings
Lake Orion – Beginnings
Michigan Above-Ground Surveys, Lake Orion Homes
Michigan Above-Ground Surveys, Lake Orion Homes
Orion Since 1818 by Paul M. Scott
Orion Since 1818 by Paul M. Scott
Reconnaissance Survey: Historic Architecture, Lake Orion Homes
Reconnaissance Survey: Historic Architecture, Lake Orion Homes
Waters of Historic Lake Orion
The Waters of Historic Lake Orion presented by the Orion Historical Society
Orion Review
The Orion Review
Heir-Lines: North Oakland Genealogical Society
Orion Legacy
Orion Legacy: Orion Historical Society
Time Tracs
Time Tracs by Jim Ingram

Online Local History Resources

Free Local & Michigan History Resources

Archives of Michigan

The Archives of Michigan is responsible for preserving the records of Michigan government and other public institutions.  In addition, after review, the Archives of Michigan also accepts papers from private individuals and organizations.

Envision the Past – Michigan History

A free online library for the early history of the Great Lakes states of Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan and Wisconsin. You'll find public domain books, maps, docs, more.

Historical Society of Michigan

The Historical Society of Michigan (HSM) is the state’s oldest cultural organization, founded in 1828 by territorial governor Lewis Cass and explorer Henry Schoolcraft. The Society helps to connect Michigan’s past to students, educators, historical organizations and the public through educational programs, conferences, publications, awards, workshops, referral services, networking opportunities, and support for local history organizations. HSM is not collection based and has no museum or archives.

iDigOrion – Digital Archive

Searchable databases containing the Lake Orion Review (most issues published since 1935, plus many older issues), Heir-Lines (the quarterly publication of the North Oakland Genealogical Society), the Orion Legacy (the Orion Historical Society Newsletter), and Jim Ingram’s Time Tracs.

Library of Congress Prints & Photographs Online Catalog (PPOC)

The Prints and Photographs Online Catalog (PPOC) contains catalog records and digital images representing a rich cross-section of still pictures held by the Prints & Photographs Division and, in some cases, other units of the Library of Congress.

MeL Michigana

Enrich your family and Michigan history research with the digital and audio materials found in this resource. Over 50,000 items from a broad spectrum of libraries and historical institutions in Michigan are included in this free online collection.

Michigan County Histories and Atlases

Comprised of 428 digitized titles (many composed of multiple volumes) published before 1923, the collection offers all members of the community free keyword searching and page-by-page access to digitized reproductions of Michigan county histories and atlases as a resource for historical and genealogical research.

Michigan Historical Center

The Michigan Historical Center is a statewide administrative agency headquartered in the Michigan Library and Historical Center in downtown Lansing.  There is no charge to enter the building.  The east wing of the building houses the Michigan Historical Center's Archives of Michigan and Michigan Historical Museum.

Northeast Oakland Historical Society & Museum

The Northeast Oakland Historical Society was organized in 1971 by a group of interested persons from Oxford, Addison and Orion Townships.  The Society maintains the Northeast Oakland Historical Museum, located at  1 North Washington Street in Oxford, Michigan.  The museum is staffed by volunteers.

Oakland County Historical Resources

Oakland County Historical Resources (OCHR) is a full-text, searchable database composed of digitized text and images of original documents, death notices and obituaries, maps, newspapers, photos, etc. contributed or approved by OCHR members. Each item is documented with the citation or source. The focus is on pre 1930's copyright free materials.

Oakland County Pioneer and Historical Society

Established in 1874, the Oakland County Pioneer and Historical Society is the oldest continuously operating non-profit historical society in Michigan.  The role of OCPHS is to preserve and convey the contribution of Oakland County in the evolution of American History.

Orion Historical Society

The Orion Historical Society, a 501(c)3 organization, was founded in 1994 as a community organization dedicated to the preservation of Orion’s legacy.  Since the first organizational meeting early in 1994, dedicated members have worked hard at increasing awareness of our community’s unique architectural and historical resources. The members and friends of the Society continue to embody its mission statement – “…to involve people to actively participate in the growth and vitality of the Orion community through preservation activities and education about Orion’s legacy.”

Premium Local & Michigan History Resources - Library Card Required

Michigana: Sources in U.S. History Online

Drawn from the Sabin collection and other Gale sources, the archive provides access to a wide variety of documents: personal narratives and memoirs, pamphlets and political speeches, sermons and songs, legal treatises and children's books.

Online Genealogy Resources

Free Genealogy Resources

Allen County Public Library Genealogy Center

The ACPL Genealogy Center is a unique and valuable resource for the Northeastern Indiana community and the entire genealogical community at large.  ACPL has one of the largest research collections available, incorporating records from around the world.

Cyndi’s List

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


FamilySearch, historically known as the Genealogical Society of Utah,  is a nonprofit family history organization dedicated to connecting families across generations.

Find a Grave

Find the graves of ancestors, create virtual memorials, add 'virtual flowers' and a note to a loved one's grave, etc.

Library of Michigan Genealogy Collection

Find information about conducting genealogy research and using the Library and Historical Center, as well as links to online research tools you may use from anywhere with an Internet connection.

Michigan Cemetery Sources

Represents a compilation of published cemetery transcriptions located at the Library of Michigan and links to Michigan cemetery websites.  This database also identifies the location of over 3,700 cemeteries in Michigan.  It is NOT intended to include a list of personal names.

Mortality Schedules

Includes information as to all persons dying within 12 months of the preceding census taking (1850,1860, 1870 and 1880).  Usually includes the date and cause of death.

National Archives

Genealogical research resources compiled by the National Archives.


An online community of genealogy researchers and enthusiasts.  Hosted by Ancestry.com.

Soundex Converter

The Soundex system is the means established by the National Archives to index the U.S. censuses (beginning with 1880).  It codes together surnames of the same and similar sounds but of variant spellings.  Soundexes are arranged by state, Soundex code of the surname, and given name.

Premium Genealogy Resources - Library Card Required

Ancestry Library Edition

Collection of approximately 4,000 databases including key collections such as U.S. federal census images and indexes from 1790 to 1930; the Map Center containing more than 1,000 historical maps; American Genealogical Biographical Index (over 200 volumes), Daughters of the American Revolution Lineage (over 150 volumes), The Great Migration Begins: Immigrants to New England, 1620-1630, Social Security Death Index, WWI Draft Registration Cards, Federal Slave Narratives, and a strong Civil War collection.  

Not Available for Home Access

Biography and Genealogy Master Index

Indexes current, readily available reference sources, as well as the most important retrospective works that cover individuals, both living and deceased, from every field of activity and from all areas of the world.  Bibliographic citations only -- no full-text.


Geni is a genealogy and social networking site whose goal is "solving the problem of genealogy by inviting the world to build the definitive online family tree." After creating an account, users can add and invite their close relatives to join their family tree. All Geni users can share photos, videos, and documents with their families. Geni’s Pro subscription service (available with a valid library card) allows users to find matching trees and merge those into the single world family tree, which currently contains over 80 million living users and their ancestors.

For free access to a Pro account, users must create and access their account from within the library.

HeritageQuest Online

Includes all of the images, and extensive indexing, from the 1790 - 1940 U.S. federal censuses with additional census records such as Mortality and Non-Population Schedules, Indian Census Roles and more; interactive census maps; more than 26,000 digitized book titles, including early family histories and local histories; more than 250 primary-source documents such as tax lists, city directories, probate records and more; Periodical Source Index Archive (PERSI), 1800 - 2009; Revolutionary War Pension and Bounty Land Warrant Application Files; the Freedman’s Bank Records; and the U.S. Serial Set Private Relief Actions, Memorials and Petitions.

Michigana: Sources in U.S. History Online

Drawn from the Sabin collection and other Gale sources, the archive provides access to a wide variety of documents: personal narratives and memoirs, pamphlets and political speeches, sermons and songs, legal treatises and children's books.

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