Local History and Genealogy

Newfane Public Library has an interesting history that goes back more than 100 years. On this page of our website, you can read the beginning story of how the Newfane Library was formed, who was instrumental in this process and how the library grew over the years.

Ancestry Library Edition

Ancestry Library Edition is now available here at the library!  ProQuest has partnered with Ancestry.com to create Ancestry® Library Edition, one of the most important genealogical collections available today.  It has unparalleled coverage of the United States and the United Kingdom, including census, vital statistics, church, court, and immigration records, as well as record collections from Canada, Europe, Australia and other areas of the world!  

Unlimited access to this resource is available within the library. There is no remote access.  So stop by the library sometime and access Ancestry Library Edition either on our public computers or bring your laptop and use our WiFi, all in air conditioned comfort!  At this time, access to Ancestry.com from outside the library is available with your library card & PIN.

The Freda Ruff Notebooks

A former Newfane schoolteacher (around 1943-1964), Mrs. Ruff clipped newspaper articles featuring Newfane residents and continued to do so long after she retired. These clippings are organized alphabetically into nine three-inch binders, and are available for perusal anytime the library is open. Janis Gillis, a current Newfane resident, has added two more binders to this collection!

The Judson Heck, Sr. Notebooks

Jud Heck, along with being an active member of the Town of Newfane Historical Society, was the Town Historian from 1978-2003. During his tenure he clipped newspaper articles that dealt with the town of Newfane and its residents. These clippings are organized by year into forty-nine three and four-inch binders, with each year being subdivided into categories such as business, churches, schools, Historical Society, people, tourism, etc. These binders are available for personal use anytime the library is open.

These notebooks have been moved to the Van Horn Mansion.

Newfane Central School Yearbooks

The library has a set of NCS yearbooks dating back to 1936. Our set is not complete, and our most recent volume is 2010. Duplicate volumes are shelved in our Local History collection, but our almost-full set is shelved in a separate room, so ask at the front desk for the year you require if it isn’t shelved with our duplicates.