Genealogy Collection Development Policy
The Local History/Genealogy Room of the Hancock County Public Library is maintained as a non-circulating collection of local history and genealogical materials.
The Local History/Genealogy Room attempts to develop and maintain a collection of genealogical materials, including: all materials available on Greenfield, surrounding towns and Hancock County; the surrounding counties of Henry, Madison, Shelby, Hamilton and a limited collection of Marion County items, especially in townships bordering Hancock County; materials on states which were part of the migratory routes to Indiana, especially North Carolina, Virginia, Kentucky, Pennsylvania, Tennessee and Ohio.
- Local and Indiana History
The Hancock County Public Library is the main collection environment for information about Hancock County and Greenfield. As such we will purchase and actively pursue donations of all materials related to the county. Materials on prominent Hoosiers, including James Whitcomb Riley, famous Hoosier authors and other items on Indiana are also appropriate additions to the collection.
Books purchased and donated will include county histories; vital record indexes, including birth and death records, yearbooks, cemetery records, family histories, atlases, maps, research guides, and other items.
The Local History/Genealogy Room contains 2 machines used to view microfilm, including The Daily Reporter, Hancock Democrat and Hancock Republican newspapers, as well as U.S. Census records from Indiana and other states. Microfilm of the Daily Reporter contains issues from 1908-present.
Donations of Indiana and/or Hancock County maps may be accepted at the library's discretion.
The room contains a collection of local high school yearbooks. Schools include Greenfield-Central High School, New Palestine High School, Eastern Hancock High School and Mount Vernon High School. Also included are yearbooks from schools which are no longer in existence, including Maxwell High School, Greenfield High School, Eden High School, Wilkinson High School, Charlottesville High School, Greenfield Junior High School and Hancock Central High School. The library accepts donations of yearbooks, particularly for years not already in the collection.
- Vertical Files
The vertical files will include local history/genealogy files such as names and cemetery records.
- Indiana Collection
This collection obtains books on the history of Indiana, well-established Indiana authors and other famous Hoosiers.
- Rare Books
The library owns a collection of rare James Whitcomb Riley books. The library maintains these books due to Riley's local significance. Many of the Riley books have been digitized and are available on the library's website.
- Greenfield City Directories
Historical city directories can be a useful research tool. The library will attempt to collect city directories for the Greenfield area through donations. There is a large gap between the years 1926 and 1955. Donations will be solicited for these items.
The department does not collect the following materials:
- Multiple copies of items already owned (An exception is yearbooks, which are popular items.)
- Boxes of papers with no apparent order
- Unorganized family records, family bibles in their entirety. (Copies may be made of relevant family information only.)
- Phone books from outside the area
Local history and genealogy materials are funded through the reference budget.
HCPL willingly accepts donations of materials as stated above. All donated items become the property of Hancock County Public Library and will be used as seen fit.
Many older items no longer have a copyright and/or have been out of print for a long time. If needed, materials may be photocopied. Photocopying is only done if the copyright has expired or if permission has been obtained from the copyright owner.
It is much more difficult to select genealogy and local history materials using traditional library collection development aids, including current reviews. Most of these items are not reviewed by professional library journals. As such, library staff must obtain items using other criteria.
Retention and De-Selection
Local History/Genealogy materials are withdrawn only if superseded by a more current edition or if found to be highly inaccurate. Items which are damaged will be checked out to Technical Services staff to be repaired if possible.