Resources & Reference Materials

Digital Collections

Documents & Directories


Unique Collections

Biography Files

Just because there may not be a book written about them doesn’t mean they weren’t in the newspaper! OPL has several file cabinets of clippings on local business persons, authors, artists and other well-known Omahans. We have a 2 volume set of black 3-ring notebooks at the 3rd-floor desk that indexes our files.

Douglas County Birth & Death Registers

Death certificates were not required in Nebraska until 1920. Prior to this time the county attorney/coroner recorded the event in a ledger. Birth registers are reels #1 (1874-1906), #2 (1896-1907) & 2A (1892-1910). Death Registers are reels #3 & 4. They cover Douglas County (1873-1904), South Omaha (1895-July 1905) & City of Omaha (1895-1915). The call number for these reels is Nebraska Reference 929.3782254 Douglas.

Masonic Files

The Scottish Rite Masons donated over 30 boxes of admissions application forms dating from 1881 to 1999. Actual records are in the locked filed cabinets in the Northeast corner of  the 3rd floor near the atlases. Please ask a staff member to unlock them. The Index to Vital Records of the Ancient & Accepted Scottish Rite Masons, Valley of Omaha, Orient of Nebraska, 1881-1999, Nebraska Reference 366.109782254 Index, by Margaret Marrs, is a guide to these files.

National Register of Historic Places Applications

This resource is located in Nebraska Reference. It contains copies of applications filed with the National Register of Historic Places to obtain “landmark” status in the Omaha area. Files are alphabetical by name of building.

Naturalizations Index

Index to Nebraska naturalization records and 63 Iowa counties prior to 1906. Reels are stored in the microfilm room along the wall with windows (south wall) at the W. Dale Clark (Main) Library. Actual records are held at the Douglas County Historical Society.

Newspaper Clippings

Ever wonder what people did before online indexes? They used clipping files! Most articles are from the Omaha World-Herald, morning & evening editions and from other local magazines and newspapers. File cabinets lining the South Wall contain articles from the paper on subjects of local interest. Cabinets along the East Wall have more historic items – pamphlets, newspaper articles and other ephemera. Both have card file indexes behind the 3rd-floor service desk. The majority of the newspaper clippings are from 1947-1987.

Phone Books

Omaha phone books from 1920-Present are available in the Nebraska reference collection on the 3rd floor of W. Dale Clark Main Library.

Wagon Roads

Think Omaha's roads are bad now? Imagine traveling by wagon to Fort Kearney, NE or Virginia City, MT! This unique source is a microfilm copy of papers from the office of the Secretary of the Interior relating to wagon roads from 1857-1887. The originals can be found in the Library of Congress. Our copy is located in Nebraska Reference - 978 United.


A collection of yearbooks from various high schools in the Omaha area. Central High’s O-Book goes back to 1909! UNO & UNL are represented as well. Check at the reference desk as some years are missing. Find the yearbooks using call numbers Nebraska Reference 373.782 Central, 378.382 Municipa or 378.782 Universiti. See what your ancestor looked like! Yearbooks from Omaha Central can also be found at