The Springfield, Missouri, library has a unique reference for genealogists: about 39 linear feet of shelving packed with what staff appreciatively and respectfully refer to as Dr. Hall's Index. These 225 volumes represent one of the most important and valuable tools the Springfield-Greene County Library District can offer its genealogical patrons, according to Local History Librarian Michael Glenn.
Officially called "Abstracts and Index of Items of Genealogical Interest," the books contain something like 3 million clippings of obituaries, marriages, births, and divorce announcements printed in Springfield newspapers between 1865 and 2006.
The work is of interest to those researching their family trees, plus many more. "It's valuable to people trying to contact classmates, or to find out about past tragedies. The clippings have helped birth parents reunite with their children and locate long-lost relatives. The information has provided clues for research into all kinds of events and is a way to confirm dates," said Glenn.
"The books have saved researchers countless hours in time spent searching through multiple documents."
You can read all the details in Jeanne Duffey's article in the News-Leader at http://www.news-leader.com/article/20090104/COLUMNISTS08/901040315.