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According to the 72-Year-Rule, "the National Archives releases census records to the general public 72 years after the Census Day".

The 1940 Census was released in April 2012. The 1950 Census will be live April 2022 on Required information includes the individual's state, county, and Enumeration District (ED) within each county.

  • Click here to access an online index of enumeration maps.
  • Click on the link to enter the database.
  • Enter the individual's name, state, county, and Enumeration District to search.

The National Archives has embedded some brief videos on its website that explain the importance of the 1940 Census and how details about population, housing, and agriculture will be described.

Other sources for the 1940 Census images include:


About our Special Collections

The Special Collections room contains more than 8,500 items. Subject areas include Genealogy, the Civil War, Texana, and local history (Palestine and Anderson County). Recent additions to the collection are the Confederate Pension files for every soldier in Anderson County who filed for a confederate pension.

Ancestry and other database subscriptions are available. Local newspapers dating to 1857 are available on microfilm as are several years of the late 19th century for the Galveston Daily News.

Volunteers who have photographed headstones and found death records and obituaries have helped move the Anderson County Cemetery database closer to being ready to post to the library’s web site. This compilation of records which includes directions, GPS coordinates, enumerations, photos, obituaries, and more will prove invaluable to researchers. There is still plenty of work to do and volunteers are always welcome.

Genealogical information using Internet resources, maps, city directories and telephone books, and genealogical-historical journals are available for browsing. Microfilm and microfiche readers (including a digital microfilm reader with Internet connectivity) are available.

Special Collections librarian Karla Lang assists patrons in finding historical and genealogical material. The library is not staffed for extensive research. See below for basic query research we can provide. If extensive research is needed, the librarian will refer patrons to a local genealogist who can provide research for a fee.


Worth a Look Websites from Library Genealogist Karla Lang

The DAR Genealogical Research System is a combination of several databases created in recent years to organize the large quantity of information that the DAR has collected since its inception in 1890.
Help finding and obtaining a photo of an ancestor's grave marker.
Events that touched our ancestors' lives.
Genealogy Standards discussed.
Good place to put basic family outlines online for others to view.
Library of Congress and the National Endowment for the Humanities present the National Digital Newspaper Program. Arizona, California, District of Columbia, Florida, Hawaii, Kentucky, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, Utah, Virginia and Washington are available now, but more will be coming over the next few years.
Texas Death Certificate images online. Free!
The Portal to Texas History, from the University of North Texas
Texas Adjutant General Service Records: 1836 - 1935

This series combines both official service record files from the Adjutant General's Office and alphabetical files created by other agencies that contain records related to an individual's service in a military unit.


Palestine Public Library is very limited on staff, so we are only able to fulfill basic queries. The types of queries include obituaries, when you have the exact date and year of death, and articles from the microfilm when you have the exact date and year.

For query request, please contact:

Karla Lang, Special Collections
Palestine Public Library
2000 South Loop 256, Ste. 42
Palestine, TX 75801
Telephone: 903-729-4121