Archives and Rare Books Library
8th Floor, Blegen Library
P.O. Box 210113
2602 McMicken Circle
Cincinnati, Ohio 45221-0113 (map
Hours: 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday
Parking and visiting ARB
The Archives and Rare Books Library (ARB) is located inside the Blegen Library, which is located near the corner of Clifton Avenue and Calhoun Street on the main campus of the University of Cincinnati. Parking is available on nearby streets and on campus at the Stratford Heights Garage on Clifton Avenue. Parking is no longer available at the Deaconess Hospital parking garage on Straight Street.
Once inside the Blegen Library, walk past the Classics Library to a narrow entryway and a small hidden elevator. Take this elevator to the 8th floor.
Many of the records at ARB are in old, large volumes or in fragile condition, and patrons are not permitted to handle them. Call at least a week before your visit to make an appointment and to discuss which records you wish to access. All researchers are required to sign the guest registry and need to present a valid photo ID. See Genealogy Research for other ARB policies and frequently asked questions.
Birth and death records
ARB's website has an online index and images of City of Cincinnati, Ohio, births (1874-1912) and deaths (1865-1912). The images are of index cards that were created from indexing the original ledger books. These index cards are considered by the City of Cincinnati to be the official records for that time period. However, some index cards are missing since these cards were accessible to the public before 2003. The original ledger books are a more complete record set, but these books are in fragile condition (see Important Note).
The Hamilton County Genealogical Society (HCGS) has indexed death records (1878-1905) from a microfilmed copy of the original ledger books. The series, Index to Cincinnati, Ohio, Death Records, may be purchased in the HCGS shop and may also be available at a library near you.
Citizenship and naturalization records
The ARB maintains an online index consisting of four PDF files. See Step 1 on our Natualizations page.
Searchable images of military service exemptions granted by the Provost Marshal General's Bureau upon posting of a monetary bond.
Searchable images of five volumes. Includes an index, financial records, and payroll records. The Record of Commitments (1869-1882, 1891-1902) includes the names of individuals committed, their nationality, a description of their offenses or the reason for admittance, information on their parents, and their age.
PDF of original ledger including records for baptisms, marriages, and deaths.
PDFs of four volumes including Sunday school records, finance records, and minutes.
ARB has many other Hamilton County, Ohio, records which are listed in A Guide to Genealogical Resources in Cincinnati & Hamilton County, Ohio. Examples are:
page modified: 05/10/2020 RTB