Joining and Renewing Membership Questions

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Go to the Sign In page and click on Forgot Your Password? Or click on this link to reset it right now.

Enter in either the username or email associated with your account and an email will be sent to you containing a link to reset your password.

If a few minutes have passed and you have not received an email check your Junk or Spam filters. If you still do not see the email, contact with your membership details.

Once you have signed up for a joint membership, log in to your account and click on Account at the top right of the page (or click this link to go directly to the accounts page). Under the Membership tab, you will see the option to Manage Group.

On the next screen, write the email address of the second member in the Email(s) to invite box and then press Invite Members and enter in a Group Name (like a family name).

The secondary member will be sent an email where they can add their username and member details.

If your joint membership is set to expire at the end of the membership year, you must log in to the “Primary” user account to renew your joint membership. Once you are logged in you should see the option to renew under the main site navigation or if you click on the Account page.

If you were a member using our previous website, but your membership had expired before 2021, you will need to Join again and reenter your membership details, by going to our “Join” page.

Once you have completed that step, email so that we can associate your old member number with your new online account.

WPGS extends a 90-day grace period to members who do not renew by the end of June each membership year. The grace period is over at the end of September.

Our automated notification system sent out an email letting members know that the grace period had ended for anyone who had entered into the grace period, regardless if you had renewed already. This was an error in our system that will be fixed for the next membership year. You may have received this email even if your membership is active.

If you got this message and you’d like to check your membership status, please log in and go to this link:

It will bring you to your account page, where you can check the status of your Individual or Joint Account, which should be active if you subscribed for the next year and will let you continue to access your member benefits

Shop Questions

WPGS is proud of its publications, which bring to light many lesser-known regional resources. From historic newspaper
items to government records to maps, you’ll find a wealth of information in these record abstracts and finding aids. If ordering by mail, download and complete the Printable Order Form for each publication requested, submitting a separate check with each order, so that we can return your payment if the publication has already been sold. Please check the website to be sure the volume you wish to purchase is still available. If you’re in PA and you are mailing in book order, don’t forget to add the 7% tax to your order.

The WPGS Library is housed in the Pennsylvania Department of the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, Main Branch, in the Oakland neighborhood of Pittsburgh. The collection does not circulate. Our thousands of volumes focus on Western Pennsylvania records, yet may extend to nearby areas in Ohio and West Virginia. Each year we sort through our collection and weed out duplicates, older editions of current publications, items that are outdated, and volumes that are not focused on Western Pennsylvania family history research. Previously, we offered these volumes for sale at our annual meeting in June. However, this online sale excluded many members and non-members who are not able to attend that meeting in person. The Online Used Book Sale makes these books accessible to everyone at a reasonable price. SHIPPING IS NOW FREE!!!!, but dont’ forget to add the 7% tax for Pennsylvania residents. See A List By Category for a comprehensive listing of the available volumes, then you can order online using Paypal. Members receive a discount on all volumes priced over $5.00. If ordering by mail, download and complete a Printable Order Form for each publication requested and submit a separate check with each item ordered. This is so that we can return your payment if the publication has already been sold, rather than having to issue a refund. Please check the website to be sure the volume you wish to purchase is still available. Again, if you’re in PA and you are mailing in a book order, don’t forget to add the 7% tax to your order.

All transactions are processed on a first-come, first-served basis, based on the receipt of payment, then by the postmark date, and ALL SALES ARE FINAL. Please check the website often as new books are added periodically. As this is an all-volunteer effort and we are using USPS Media Mail rates for shipping, please allow at least two (2) weeks for order fulfillment. Most books will have library identification markings, but they were in a non-circulating library so, other than that, most offering are in very good condition.

Proceeds from this Used Book Sale go to the General Fund to be used to provide additional services to our members.

Visit our Library Research Services page to learn more about every service we offer.

The Western Pennsylvania Genealogical Society is an all-volunteer organization, but we try our best to answer research questions and archives requests as promptly as possible. WPGS will research for members or non-members, but members do receive preferential treatment. Turnaround time for most 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. It is intended to complement the research resources available through our colleagues at the Pennsylvania Department of the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh.

Digital downloads will be emailed to you immediately.

Yes, all items have a significant discount for members. Please sign in to see the member price. If you are not a member, you can join at any time and instantly receive our discounted price.

There is a base shipping charge of $5.00 with an additional fee for most sets. Shipping is calculated in the cart at checkout.

A 7% Pennsylvania sales tax is collected from Pennsylvania residents on all transactions, including shipping and handling.


Did you know that WPGS is NOT an archive and we do not have the resources to accept your entire collection?

We do have a non-circulating library within the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, Main Branch, and we accept printed and sourced family histories that reference individuals and families that have resided in the 26 counties of Western Pennsylvania. However, we do not have the capacity to accept all of the related resources and documents used to compile these histories. Although our library accepts book donations relating to Western Pennsylvania research, whether individual books or entire collections, we ask that an inventory of your donation be submitted beforehand so that we can review that list and compare it with our needs and guidelines. We do accept books to be dispensed through the Used Book Store, but they need to be pre-approved as well.

Please refer to the WPGS Library Donation Policy and Library Donations Form and contact for additional information

You can make a donation online by clicking here.