Research Materials

Online Research

Researching Naperville's past is as close as your computer, thanks to the Naperville Heritage Collection, which includes digitized historic documents available online. View details about our Web Resource Links.

Material Types

The following research materials are available in the Research Library/archives at Naper Settlement. These items are available for you to use on-site only. They may not be borrowed or checked out. Types of materials available include:

  • Over 14,000 photographs / images
  • Bound volumes (from the Fire Department, cemetery, business ledgers, Kroehler Manufacturing Company, municipal records, clubs and organizations)
  • Census records
  • Deeds/abstracts
  • Genealogies (scrapbooks, diaries)
  • General reference (reference books, microfilm and microfiche)
  • Letters
  • Maps / plats
  • Newspapers (1849+)
  • Periodicals (Harper's New Monthly Magazine, Godey's Lady's Book, Scribner's and The Century)

Published Materials Available at Naperville Heritage Society

Atlases, Plat Books

  • 20th Century Atlas of DuPage County Illinois. Chicago: Middle-West Publishing Company, 1904.
  • Campbell's New Atlas of the State of Illinois. Chicago: R.A. Campell, 1871.
  • Combination Atlas Map of DuPage County Illinois. Elgin, Illinois: Thompson Brothers and Burr, 1874.
  • Plat Book of DuPage County Illinois. Rockford, Illinois: W.W. Hixson and Comany, c. 1958.

Census Records

  • DuPage County Federal Census Records for 1840, 1850, 1860, 1870 (typed format), 1880, 1900, 1910 and 1920 (electronic access).

City / County Directories

  • Downers Grove, Hinsdale, Naperville, Western Springs, Westmont City Directory, 1927 to 1928 Edition.
  • DuPage County Illinois Directory, 1924 to 1925. Chicago: McDonough and Company, 1925.
  • Holland's Business Directory of Naperville, Illinois for 1886. Chicago: Holland Publishing Company, Publishers, 1886.
  • Naperville, Lisle and Eola City Directory, 1923 to 1924.
  • Naperville Telephone Directories, 1909 to 1960.

County Histories

  • A History of DuPage County, Illinois. C.W. Richmond and H.F. Vallette. Chicago: Scripps, Bross & Spears, 1857. Commemorative Edition published by the Naperville Heritage Society, 1974.
  • DuPage at 150 and Those Who Shaped Our World. Jean Moore and Hiawatha Bray. West Chicago, Illinois: West Chicago Printing Co., 1989.
  • DuPage Discovery 1776 to 1976. David E. Mass and Charles W. Weber, editors. Colombian Lithographing Company, 1976.
  • DuPage Roots. Richard A. Thompson and contributors. Wheaton, Illinois: DuPage County Historical Society, 1985.
  • Historical Encyclopedia of Illinois and History of DuPage County, Volume I and II. Newton Bateman, editor. Chicago: Munsell Publishing Co. Publishers, 1913.
  • History of DuPage County, Illinois. Rufus Blanchard. Chicago: O.L. Baskin and Company, Historical Publishers, 1882.
  • History of DuPage County, Illinois. C.W. Richmond. Aurora, Illinois: Knickerbocker and Hodder, Publishers and Blank Book Makers, 1877.
  • DuPage County Guide 1831 to 1931. American Guide Series. Compiled and written by workers of the Federal Writers' Project of the Works Projects Administration in the State of Illinois, 1931. Re-edited by Marion Knoblauch; Irvin A. Ruby, Distributor; Elmhurst, Illinois, 1948.

Naperville Histories

  • A View of Historic Naperville from the Sky-lines. Genevieve Towsley. Naperville, Illinois: The Naperville Sun, Incorporated, 1975.
  • Naperville Cemetery: A History of a Town in Stone, Fox Valley Genealogical Society. Naperville, Illinois, 2008.
  • Naperville Centennial 1831 to 1931. Fort Payne Chapter - D.A.R., 1931. 2nd Printing, The Naperville Sun, Incorporated, 1975.
  • Naperville Pioneer History, Volume II. Fort Payne Chapter - D.A.R. Naperville, Illinois, c. 1952.
  • The Naperville Sesquicentennial Photo Album, 1831 to 1981. For the Naperville Sesquicentennial Commission of Naperville, compiled by Jean Wehrli and Mary Lou Wehrli. Naperville, Illinois, 1981.
  • Pioneers of Naperville: A Memorial Volume. Fort Payne Chapter - D.A.R. Naperville, Illinois, c. 1952.
  • Souvenir of the Naperville Home Coming. Naperville, Illinois, 1917.