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Illinois Genealogy Resources

Illinois Manuscript Collections

  • Blumenson, Martin. The Patton Papers, 1940-45, V. II. Boston: Houghton Miflin Company, 1974.
  • Draper Manuscripts. Collected in the nineteenth century by Lyman Copeland Draper. The variety of the collection includes correspondence, interview notes, extracts from newspapers and other published sources, muster rolls, and transcripts of official documents and research notes for the western Carolinas and Virginia, Kentucky, Tennessee, the entire Ohio River valley, and parts of the Mississippi River valley. The collection is available on 134 reels of microfilm, which is owned by numerous libraries in the country. To access the collection, consult Josephine L. Harper, Guide to the Draper Manuscripts. Madison, Wisconsin: State Historical Society of Wisconsin, 1983.
  • Index to the 85,000+ documents in the George Rogers Clark Papers
  • J. Nick Perrin Collection at the Illinois State Archives in Springfield. Has some of the very earliest records in Illinois. The collection is comprised of over 5,000 documents relating to the French, British, and American regimes at Cahokia and to early St. Clair County at Belleville, dating from 1737 to 1850. A 1737 marriage contract is one of the earliest items in this collection. Births and deaths (1840-58) are also included. Land claims, tax records, road petitions, registers of slaves and free negroes, and probate records are only a few of the multitude of historically important documents in the Perrin Collection.
  • Kaskaskia Manuscripts. Another significant collection for Illinois research at the Illinois State Archives. The records, which begin in 1708, are almost entirely notarial transactions. They include, among other agreements, acknowledgments of debt, marriage contracts, and land sales. Some clerk of court registers have been included in the notary's files. If a notary was unavailable, a priest might draft documents to be filed with the notary's records.