1201 Willson Avenue, Webster City, IA 50595

local history


The Jane Young Room, originally the Art Room, houses a collection of rare and valuable art pieces including “The Venus of Milo” and “The Minerva of the Vatican” which were obtained and imported from Italy in 1912 especially for the library. The shelves are filled with the work of local authors. The Jane Young Room holds the works of MacKinley Kantor including the manuscript of Happy Land and the works of Clark Mollenhoff including the galley proofs of Despoilers of Democracy.

 The Jane Young Room and it’s collections may be viewed upon request. Please ask the reference librarian for access. 

Genealogy Room

Located at the East end of the Adult Department, the Genealogy Room houses a collection of published materials dating back to the 19th century focusing on the history of Hamilton County. Materials about Webster and other surrounding counties are also selectively collected. Our Genealogy Room also houses many different genealogy resources and books available to browse.

Unique Genealogy Room holdings include:

  • Hamilton County Directories
  • Webster County Directories
  • Phonebooks
  • Hamilton County Cookbooks
  • Webster City Schools
  • Iowa Central Community College
  • South Hamilton 
  • Kamrar

*More yearbooks can be found in the Jane Young Room (open upon request)

  • Hamilton County Plat Maps
  • Webster County Plat Maps
  • 1896 Atlas of Hamilton County
  • 1918 Atlas of Hamilton County
  • History of Hamilton County Iowa
  • Lee’s 1912 History of Hamilton County
  • Biographical Record and Portrait Album
  • Webster City Tribune
  • Freeman Journal
  • State Census Records
  • Hamilton County Citizen Cards 
  • WWI Service Records (Hamilton County citizens)
  • WWII Service Records (Hamilton County citizens)
  • Webster City Clippings

Kendall Young Library Photo Archive

We are in the process of digitizing and adding our collection of Citizen Cards and other miscellaneous collections. This is an ongoing project, so check back often! 

Hamilton County Digital Archives

The Digital Archives of the Hamilton County is an ongoing project of the Kendall Young Library. Currently, the following newspapers are available online:

Daily Freeman Journal  1857-2014
Webster City Tribune 1886-1916
Jewell Record  1886-1922
Williams Wasp  1898-1910

helpful links

Find ancestors and relatives in the complete set of the U.S. Federal Census Records from 1790-1940. Also find information on people and places in over 25,000 family and local histories.

ProQuest has partnered with Ancestry.com to create Ancestry Library, one of the most important genealogical collections available today with unparalleled coverage of the United States and the United Kingdom. Its valuable content is a strong complement to HeritageQuest Online. In Library Use Only.

Distributed by ProQuest, Fold3 Library Edition by Ancestry provides convenient access to US military records, including the stories, photos, and personal documents of the men and women who served.  This continually-growing collection contains millions of records from world-class archives, many of which are exclusively available on Fold3.

Newspapers.com is the largest online newspaper archive consisting of 837 million+ pages of historical newspapers from 26,600+ newspapers from around the United States and beyond. Newspapers provide a unique view of the past and can help us understand and connect with the people, events and attitudes of an earlier time.

Fortepan.us is an open source archival platform that is inspiring cultural heritage institutions to rethink and revolutionize digital archiving practices. Because Fortepan.us is designed as a “digital first” archive, we have been liberated to think differently about the structure and display of photographs online.