Repository:Plano Public Library System (Texas)

Repository Plano Public Library System (Texas)
Postal Address GLHTA
2501 Coit Rd
Plano, TX 75075
Place Plano, Collin, Texas, United States
Phone 972.769.4240



In 1971, the Collin County Genealogical Society (CCGS) moved its existing genealogy collection to Gladys Harrington Library. Since that time the collection has continued to grow with the help of gifts, donations, and fund raising programs of the CCGS and the Genealogy Friends of Plano Libraries, Inc. In late 2007, the collections moved to the basement of the W. O. Haggard, Jr. Library. Our collection size has doubled since the Fall of 2006.



Our genealogy collection contains over 10,000 books, 8,000 microform items, 600 cd-rom, 200 maps, and 15,000 periodical issues. We also subscribe to Ancestry Library Edition,, HeritageQuest Online (via TexShare), ProQuest Historical Map Works, Texas Sanborn Insurance Maps (via TexShare), Dallas Morning News Historical Archives, ProQuest’s Historical Newspapers: The New York Times,, and JSTOR.

Local History

Our local history items can be found in our genealogy collection, Texana, vertical files, and Archives. Local History is something we are dedicated to, and we are always looking to serve the needs of our current and future clientele by boosting this aspect of our collections.


These are books about Texas that may have historical or cultural interest but do not logically fit with our regular genealogy collection. These items are housed in our Texana Room and will be pulled upon request. There are just over 1,000 books in this collection.


We have a growing archival collection that includes photographs, scrapbooks, research from local authors, and City of Plano and Collin County items that we feel it is our duty to preserve. We accept paper artifacts and photographs of known Plano or Collin County residents. We have thousands of items but only 478 records currently in our library catalog.


Census Records

GLHTA has the complete U.S. Federal Census for Texas from 1850 - 1930 and the U.S. Federal Census for all states from 1790 - 1850. The 1820 - 1830 censuses are on CD. GLHTA is currently in the process of adding another 20,000 reels of microfilm of the U.S. Federal Census.

County, State, & Federal Records

Many sources are available in microform and print including county and state histories, as well as abstracts of records such as marriages and other vital records, wills, deeds, court minutes, cemetery and church records, and colonial collections.

Military Records & Passenger Lists

Indexes to some of the military records and passenger lists are available on CD-ROM and some are available through book format. In addition, and Ancestry Library Edition have many indexes and original images available via our library databases.

Family Histories

The family history section is arranged alphabetically by the primary family. This section is located in the call number area of 929.2. All family histories are donated, and new ones are welcomed.

Vertical File and Map File

The vertical file consists of miscellaneous papers of genealogical interest arranged in alphabetical order. One cabinet is arranged by subject and another contains family information by surname. Many maps from throughout Texas and other states are located in the map case.

Walter B. Wilson Papers, 1894 - 1941

GLHTA owns the microfilm of original Walter B. Wilson papers located at The Center for American History and The University of Texas at Austin. Walter B. Wilson was one of the owners and editors of the McKinney Daily Courier-Gazette and the McKinney Weekly Democrat-Gazette. He compiled 87 scrapbooks of newspaper clippings and wrote eight diaries covering 43 years. His collection of papers contributed significantly to the history of Collin County. The papers include correspondence, miscellaneous papers, diaries, his scrapbooks, miscellaneous newspaper clippings, and Collin County scrapbooks.

Obituary Lookups

Requests for obituaries in the Plano Star Courier (1904 - to date), McKinney Democrat (1884 - 1954), Dallas Morning News (1885-1977, 1979 - to date), and the Garland News (1900 – 2000) are searched free of charge. Please provide as much information as possible on the individual and limit your requests to 3 per week. Obituaries, if found, will be delivered either electronically or via postal mail. Please allow 2 to 4 business days for electronic delivery; longer if by mail. We do not charge for this service, but a donation to our Memorial fund would be appreciated. This money is used to add new items to our collection. If requesting a copy by postal mail, please send a self-addressed stamped envelope to Plano Public Library System, GLHTA Obituary Request, 2501 Coit Rd, Plano, TX 75075.


To request an official tour or to reserve the Jeanette Bickley Bland Meeting room for your genealogical or historical group contact staff at 972.769.4240. Seminars are hosted throughout the year by the GLHTA, Collin County Genealogical Society, and Genealogy Friends. Please see the calendar on each of our websites to see upcoming opportunities.

Genealogy Organizations

Two genealogy organizations support GLHTA.