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Books Useful For Genealogical Research

The Battye Library holds the world’s finest collection of books relating to Western Australia. In the years prior to Western Australia's sesquicentenary in 1979, there was an upsurge in genealogical interest, which led to many family histories being compiled or published. This trend has continued in all fields of historical research providing valuable genealogical and biographical information.

Any family history researcher should think about the lives of people they are researching - where did they live, who did they work for, what was their nationality, were they prominent in any clubs or a member of any churches etc? With that in mind the following groups of books would be worth checking to see if the person is mentioned, especially if he or she was a prominent figure in public life: suburb, town, shire, district or area histories; biographies, autobiographies or family histories; government agency, business, organisation, club or institution histories; ethnic groups or Aboriginal histories; histories of different types of occupations (eg nursing); church histories; military histories (different conflicts, regiments, battalions etc); exploration journals or diaries; and social histories. While this list is by no means exhaustive, it should provide ideas about the types of books which could be consulted. 

There are many books which contain biographical or genealogical information. Choose a subject from the list below to find an appropriate book together with a brief descriptive comment.

For further information consult the online catalogue or Battye Library reference desk staff. Those books with an asterisk after the class number have been indexed into the Biographical Index (see section Catalogues and Indexes) or online.

Page last updated: Thursday 29 September 2011