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Planning a Research Trip to Beaver County

If you have decided that this is the year you visit Beaver County and do research , here are a few tips to help to ensure that your trip is pleasant and rewarding. 

First stop should be the Beaver County Genealogy and History Center  located at 1301 7th Ave., 2nd floor, Carnegie Free Library, Beaver Falls. The Center is a non circulating library of local history. 

The hours are Monday,12-4pm , Tuesday-Wednesday -Thursday 10am-4pm and Friday 10-3pm, Saturday 10am-3pm. The staff is extremely helpful and can direct you to the courthouse in Beaver if you need to visit there. 

Getting here is easy, take exit #13 of the Pennsylvania Turnpike and follow the signs for Route 18 South which will take you right into downtown Beaver Falls. For parking, turn right on to 12th St. and right again on to 8th Ave. for a large metered parking lot on the right. 10 cents an hour or 25 cents for 3 1/2 hours. Lunch/dinner is available at Nero's across the street and south a block (homemade soups every day!) and the Brighton Hot Dog Shop across from the library serves a mean hot dog if you want something quick., Wendy's, McDonald's and Subway are on 7th Ave. north of the library. 

If you plan to spend a few days in the county there are a number of hotels as you exit the turnpike, including a Holiday Inn. The editor's personal preference when doing historic research is to stay in a Bed and Breakfast inn. Beaver County has several including, Ber-Nita in Ellwood City(1860), Felicity Farms in Beaver, Inn on College Hill in Beaver Falls(1910), and the Todd House in Beaver(1873). We also have some of the other chain hotels, Holiday Inn Express, Hampton Inn, Inns of America and new in July 2007, Comfort Suites, all of these are located off Route 60 in the vicinity of the Beaver Valley Mall.

If it's 50's nostalgia you crave, try legendary Jerry's Curb Service, Bridgewater.  Levanti's in downtown Beaver for a taste of Italy.  Jeffery's Landing and  The Wooden Angel (Excellent wine cellar!) in Bridgewater are very fine places for a more formal dinner.  Of course Brighton Hot Dog Shoppes and Eat n Park restaurants are sprinkled all over the county and are local favorites.  The Beaver Valley mall area has several chain type restaurants, Panera, Texas Road House, Applebee's, Taiwan 101, Vesuvios, etc.  Bruster's Ice Cream is also a favorite thoughout the county, if something sweet is what you crave.

Now that we have you settled with a place to sleep and a place to eat and a place to park, let's get down to doing research at the History Center. 

What to expect: We are located on the second floor of the Carnegie Free Library built in 1902 and while it is now handicap accessible(elevator, side entrance), air conditioning is limited to some smaller rooms. There are at least 12 file cabinets (4/5 drawers each) stuffed to the max with files containing correspondence that has come from other genealogists for over twenty five years. All are filed by the surname being researched. If you have sent us your family group sheets, we have put them in the surname file. Hopefully a distant cousin has done the same thing! Lucky you! Local newspaper clippings are also dropped in the surname files. Do come prepared! Family group sheets or pedigree charts will help the staff understand your particular genealogical brick wall.  The staff is very helpful and can guide you in your research.  Copy costs are 25 cents each and a running total is kept and you pay at the end. If you still need to visit the courthouse, we have maps to the courthouse with parking directions.

Please take a moment to look around.  You will notice that many books and other resources need repair.  The  Genealogy and History Center runs on a very limited budget.  Please consider slipping something into the donation box located near the double doors when you leave. While researching at the center is free, donations are gratefully accepted.  This helps the center pay for preservation of archived material which includes re-binding of books.  Most folks give a $5.00 donation but higher amounts are much appreciated!

This page was last updated on Tuesday, 30-Jun-2009 11:21:04 MDT
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