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Quaker History & Genealogy

The largest category of collections in Friends Historical Library is that of Personal and Family Papers. These materials include correspondence, journals and diaries, and property records of Quaker individuals and family groups; they date from the mid 17th century to the present. >> Browse Family & Personal Papers finding aids

Friends Historical Library holds the records of many organizations that were established by or largely under the direction of members of the Society of Friends. >> Browse Organizational Records finding aids

Throughout the 20th century, Friends Historical Library maintained a number of genre and other artificial collections; most were single manuscripts such as individual letters or account books, but some were larger manuscript collections, assembled over time to document prominent Quakers including Elias Hicks and Lucretia Mott. >> View manuscript and genre collection finding aids

Collections that fill less than a box-worth of material are considered "Small Collections." >> See small collections finding aids

Friends Historical Library (FHL) is an official depository for the records of many North American yearly meetings of the Society of Friends. Its holdings include over 3700 linear feet of original archives: membership books, minutes, and other original records. FHL also holds over 2500 reels of microfilm of Friends' records from Canada, United States, Britain, and Ireland. >> Find links to meeting record finding aids

The Friends Historical Library itself is an excellent resource for learning more about Quaker history, and it has compiled a fantastic selection of additional online resources. >> Explore resources

Quaker Records at Ancestry.com

Many Quaker records from FHL and other Quaker libraries were scanned by Ancestry.com and can be accessed through that website. If you do not personally subscribe to Ancestry, note that many public libraries have subscriptions that can be used by library patrons. Not all of our genealogy records are on the Ancestry site; see our full inventory of Quaker Meeting Records for more. Some of our patrons have reported poor indexing and incorrectly identified resources within the Quaker Meeting Records on the Ancestry site.  Please feel free to contact FHL staff at 610-328-8496 for help interpreting records. Click here to connect to Ancestry.com from the FHL Reading Room.

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