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4400 Forbes Avenue
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Western Pennsylvania Genealogical Society
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WPGS Library Research Mail-in Requests

Note: This page is for US Mail-in Requests. You may wish to try our Request Services page for the PayPal version.

The Western Pennsylvania Genealogical Society is an all-volunteer organization, but we try our best to answer research questions as promptly as we can. WPGS will research for members or non-members, but members do receive preferential treatment. Turnaround time for most library research requests is 2-4 weeks.

The WPGS library is staffed by volunteers who are available to assist patrons with limited genealogical research within the scope of the WPGS collection and resources

Such research is intended to complement, but not replace, the services of a professional genealogist. Such research is also intended to complement the research resources available through our colleagues at the Pennsylvania Department of the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh.

Our services include: General Research, Index Look-up Service, File Search Service, First Families of Western Pennsylvania Search, Naturalization Records, and WPA Home Survey Search.

Library Research Service - $15.00 per hour

We will search all relevant holdings in our collection for a specific individual, surname or family for an hourly fee of $15. Up to 5 photocopies may be included in that charge. Additional copies will require an additional copy fee. We will copy up to 10 pages per volume per request. We will also provide recommendations of additional sources for further research. Answers are in writing with copies filed in our office. Please allow a turnaround time of 2-4 weeks.


Index Search - $5.00

We will check the indices of up to 5 printed volumes that you select from our online catalog. Please list authors and titles, and indicate the surname or place name you wish us to search for. The fee includes a photocopy of the title page and the index pages on which the surname or place name is found. WPGS members may request 2 free index searches per year. If you would like us to send copies of the pages cited in the index, we will do so at an additional cost of $0.50 per page. We will copy up to 10 pages per volume per request.

Printable Form for Index Search


File Search - $15.00

We will search for up to 1 hour, for an individual in our Family Files, Church History Files, Cemetery History Files and Member Ancestor Chart Files for a fee of $15.00. You will be advised as to the number of pages found. All photocopies are $0.50 per page.


First Families of Western Pennsylvania - $5.00

We will send you a photocopy of all genealogical information from the First Family application for any named ancestor submitted by a member. An index to First Family ancestors is searchable online in our Members Only area, one of the benefits of membership in WPGS.


Naturalization Records - $5.00

We will provide copies of pages from WPGS’ book A List of Immigrants... as indexed by Ancestry.com. Please provide the immigrant's name and the source volume and reference as given by Ancestry.com. The information found in these seven volumes was abstracted from the original naturalization petitions by members of WPGS as the society's first project after its formation in the 1970s. All information on each document was transcribed, but the type and quantity of information varies greatly from one entry to the next. For photocopies of the original documents, please include a total of $10 per name.


Submit Your Research Request

To mail your research request, send payment, WPGS membership number (as appropriate) and SASE to the following address:

Western Pennsylvania Genealogical Society
c/o PA Department, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh
4400 Forbes Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15213-4080

Please be as specific as possible with your request(s). Be sure to include at least the individual's full name, the approximate dates and the place.


WPA Home Survey - $5.00 for 3 addresses

The WPA Home Survey Project, compiled in 1936 and 1937 by the Works Project Administration provides invaluable information on certain Allegheny County properties in existence at that time. Not available for all addresses. WPA home survey records include a physical description of the property, as well as a sketch of the property's outlines (top view and side view) made by a draftsman. Please note that these are not artist sketches.

The WPGS Archives Committee will make copies of WPA home survey records for addresses you specify. We will photocopy both sides of the page containing the information. Before you order, please see the list of available municipalities and wards and sample records

To mail your request, please make check payable to WPGS. Enclose a self-addressed, stamped #10 envelope, include your email address (if you have one) and send to:
Western Pennsylvania Genealogical Society
4400 Forbes Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA  15213-4080
Attention: Archives Committee