Illinois Genealogical Research by Molly Kennedy

Welcome!! If you need help doing genealogical research in Illinois, you've come to the right place.

Want to get in touch? Send me an email at Or, write to me by snail-mail:

Molly Kennedy
P.O. Box 5785
Springfield, IL 62705

Want to learn more about me? Just click here!

I am based in Springfield, Illinois and have access to the following records:

ILLINOIS Records Time Frames and Access Add'l Info +/or Fee
Births       varies by county
Deaths in Illinois Statewide 1916-1947 for $5.00 each Pre-1916
varies by county
  for $17 each (+/-)
Pre-1916 county info 
Stillbirth certificates Statewide 1916-1947 Pre-1916
limited counties
Marriages 1817-1900+ limited counties   $5.00+
Census: Federal 1807-1930 printed on ledger-size paper (11x17") $5.00/family
Census: Illinois State 1820-1865

IF INDEXED, $5/search.  If NOT indexed, hourly rate applies ($20/hr)

Census: Civil War Militia 1861-1863 few are indexed; filmed by county $8.00
Civil War Muster Rolls 1861-1865     $5.00
WWI Draft Registrations 1917-1919     $5.00/Draft Board searched
Other Military Records Rev. War Pension applications; Muster Rolls from the  Black Hawk, Mexican and Spanish-American Wars varies
Obituaries/Death Notices 1830-current BACK IN BUSINESS!! click HERE
Newspaper articles 1813-current BACK IN BUSINESS!! click HERE
Probate/Will Case Files   currently limited to central Illinois, but see the new County Records addition, below...*  
City Directories   Ask, and I will see if available!  
Cemetery Photographs   currently limited to central Illinois  
"Brick Wall" crumbling hourly fee, agreed-upon in advance  
NEW!  County records: LDS films at Il State Archives hourly (currently) fee; agreed-upon in advance NEW!! Click HERE

SPAM-BLOCKING WARNING~  since there is an "x" in my email address - - several spam-blocking programs may stop my email responses from reaching you.  Please add my email address to your "safe" list.


I do not currently have the ability to quickly scan & email the documents I find for you.

If you really need (or choose) to have the documents scanned and emailed, please let me know why.  I may do it for free, or I may request an additional fee.  It all depends on WHAT you've ordered, WHEN you must have the results, and HOW much time it would take me, to fulfill your request.  Currently, it takes me about 15 minutes per letter-sized page.  This time includes scanning at 150-300dpi; de-speckling (if needed); cropping; resizing & antivirus scanning the data file before going online; then, using dial-up connection (it fits the budget!), uploading as an email attachment.


IF you desire to have your documents shipped to you via special handling 
(i.e., Priority Mail, Express Mail, FedEx, etc.), 
please state so in your request, and I will follow your wishes~!  

Unless otherwise specified on my website (i.e. death certificates), all postage/shipping expenses are the responsibility of the requestor/client.  I don't mind completing and submitting the additional paperwork to your chosen mailing/shipping entity at the time of mailing... It just doesn't fit into my current budget, without recompense.

Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library -  Illinois Newspaper Project holdings

The link directly below will open in a new window, and will allow you to access to the online searchable database of the IL Newspaper Project holdings, for cities, towns & counties in IL (and elsewhere) -  that are available to me at the Presidential Library here in Springfield, IL (where I live & research).  

The hyperlink below allows a search by state, by county, or also by area served.

The IL Newspaper Project holdings can be searched by the newspaper title/keyword, the city or county in which it was published. The search results are displayed in alphabetical order, and display the dates held by each institution or library. Any newspaper holdings listed for the IL State Historical Library are now housed in the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library in Springfield. (note - this is NOT an obit index; it is simply a searchable database of the available newspapers that CAN be searched!)

The hyperlink to a search screen below is newer, and deals ONLY with the newspapers in the holdings of the Microfilm Department of the A. Lincoln Presidential Library.  This newer offering will result in all newspaper holdings for any particular Illinois city or town.

Fees for Presidential Library obituary/newspaper article research:

IF obit is indexed (newspaper, city & publication date known)= $4.00 per search
IF not indexed, but death date & locale known= $5.00 per publication searched

IF you do not "guess", or suggest a newspaper that might be relevant to your ancestor's residential/familial residential location, then I must do the guessing... and my guesses may be SO wrong  - and so far off - for what you need... so check out the link above, and see if any of that county's newspapers might ring any "bells" with your known research, ok?

All others charged at hourly rate of $20 (my speed-reading keeps the cost low)

Expense reimbursement required for the above research:
    Printing expense: 1st page free; add'l pages, if necessary = 50 each
        Parking fees (if applicable, prorated), based on $1.00/hour parking rate
            Postage reimbursement (or SASE - Self-Addressed Stamped Envelope)

Sangamon Valley Collection

(historical/genealogical department of Lincoln Library, Springfield's public library)

Massive collection of indexed obituaries/death notices published in the Springfield newspapers from 1830 - current 
(the link below leads to the main library web page, with contact & telephone info; However, the obituary index is in an index-card file format, and is not online)

What can you learn from your ancestor's death certificate? Click HERE for a sample death certificate.

I consider each research request as if it's for my own family lineage; it's much more fun that way!

Payment methods: personal check, money order, well-hidden cash (not recommended by the USPS) - and now accepting payments through PayPal for orders over $20.00 (USD).  IF the total order is LESS than $20.00, but PayPal is your preferred method of payment, a small additional fee will be applied.

IF you've previously ordered research from me, but have not yet paid - please do so!  I'd hate to be forced to give up researching (in order to get a "real" job to make rent)!  If you HAVE sent a request to me, via email, and I did not respond within 2 business-days, please email me again!!

Other stuff:    
Probate Case files (especially useful for documentation of pre-1878 Illinois death dates & heirs); Historical Research; Federal Land Purchases; Plat Maps; Cemetery Inscriptions and photographs; if you don't see what you need, or what you'd like to find - please ask!  I still have much to learn!


(or REconstruction, of my brain & my life - but now both seem to be operating properly.. I hope~)

OLD SITE POSTING... still the same, but WILL be updated soon. I PROMISE!

Currently working on a rudimentary transcription (index) of the 1865 IL State Census for Cook County.  Below are links to each City of Chicago Ward (completed so far). Each Ward hyperlink will open in a new browser window.

To search for your ancestors - once you've opened any of these pages, use the Control-F (Find) function to search for character strings specific to the surnames you are seeking. The scripted handwriting (and spelling) for several pages is unbelievable~  If you'd like a copy or printout of any of the census pages, please email me the information; fees below.

Ward 5, 6 and 7 are NOW COMPLETE, (but the files needs to be cleaned up before posting) Working on Ward 8 thru 16, and Proviso twp... 

Ward 1         Ward 2           Ward 3          Ward 4          Ward 5

If you're happy with the results of my research - please pass on the good word to any genealogical mailing list or web site that you can!  If you're NOT happy - email ME - and let me know how I can make it better!

My Brick Walls My sister's Irish-themed travel agency
About me My "don't call me, I'll call you" list!  

For information, or to place an order - - Contact me via one of the methods given below:

Either by email at (Please include something in the Subject/Topic line!)  or by "snail-mail" - to:  Molly Kennedy   P.O. Box 5785   Springfield, IL 62705

page last updated Jan. 15, 2008