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Local history

OPL is committed to preserving Ottawa’s written heritage in all its depth and variety. Our local history collections illustrate the history of Ottawa and the Ottawa Valley, the evolution of its institutions, customs and peoples, and current conditions and events.

Local history reference materials can be consulted at Main, Nepean Centrepointe, or Beaverbrook branches.   In addition, OPL is pleased to house the collections of 3 local history societies.   And, of course, circulating copies of the most popular local history titles can be found at many branches. Together, our collections provide an extensive information resource on Ottawa and the surrounding area, both past and present.

Our local history librarians are available to help with your research. 

Book an appointment


Published or updated:
Think Ottawa's history is boring? Let us enlighten you! Join us at the Main...
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Published or updated:
If you are doing genealogy or local history research in Ottawa, you won't want...
Blog entry
Published or updated:
Thinking about starting your family tree? Wondering what those DNA tests really tell you?...
Blog entry
This image shows the Ottawa Public Library bookmobile
Published or updated:
Happy National Bookmobile Day! On April 11th, we celebrate this wonderful service that has...
Blog entry