Throughout its history, CCHC’s library has collected materials documenting the diversity of the county from the 1680s to the present. The library houses collections of printed volumes (25,000), and manuscripts (500,000), including family name manuscript files, letters, diaries, personal papers, business and organizational records, pamphlets, broadsides, and newspapers.
Please note that acquisitions are on hold through September 1, 2022.
For research purposes, visitors can make photocopies or take images of books, newspaper clippings, and manuscripts under fair use law.
Researchers may take an unlimited number of images with a camera, phone, or tablet. Camera licensing does not apply to the historical photograph collection.
Email your research request to: Library@mycchc.org
Document Copy Request Service ($10)
Basic Research Service ($15)
Genealogical Research Service ($30)
Postal Mail Research Service
Property Research Services
The Library’s collection includes over 25,000 volumes of books and periodicals. Books include family genealogies; county every-name indexes; and local, county, and state histories for Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, and New York. We also have a large collection of Chester County authors, local military history, and material culture/decorative arts (furniture, fabric arts, toys, silver, etc.).
Some of the titles in our periodical collection include:
U.S. Federal Census records:
Pennsylvania Septennial Census (digital copies, 1793-1870)
Clippings File: characterized as “one of the state’s best,” it was begun in the 1930s by CCHS volunteers and fills over 150 file drawers. The file contains articles clipped from over 40 Chester County newspapers and dates from 1810-1970.
Microfilms: the Library’s collection includes the following papers on microfilm:
Our manuscript collections provide information on many aspects of local history. Collection guides provide contextual information about the collection and an inventory of the collection’s contents.