Local History Research

Carthage Public Library, 1905, located at 5th Street & Garrison Avenue is also a local source for local history research and is open year-round.


All research appointments during off-season require appointments made 2-3 weeks in advance. Call or email. All visitors must present identification. No appointments being taken until after Jan. 10, 2017.

Walk-in researchers (during public schedule/season) are not guaranteed access to all materials they desire without advance appointment. This includes contents of all vertical files, Library of Congress Veterans Project interviews/notebooks, and all materials housed in archives/artifact storage areas.

A modest research fee is payable at time of use (except for students with teacher or student ID) since staff assistance is required during appointments and pre-visit and post-visit staff preparation is necessary for use of these items.

Staff will be happy to discuss your research needs by email or phone without charge. Appointments are subject to availability of appropriate personnel and should be made 2-3 weeks in advance of desired visit.

NOTE:  Museum is not the premier stop for genealogical research like the Carthage Public Library 417-237-7040 (whose collection includes census records, newspaper microfilm, cemetery records, etc., and are available for use without fee Monday through Saturday) or the Jasper County Records Center, 417-359-1100 (at Central and Lincoln -- holder of birth/death/marriage/probate records and other selected governmental records and miscellaneous collections) also available for use without fee Monday through Friday.


Museum's Library Resources

Limited City/County history books are available for FREE, self-directed research anytime museum is open to public (unless program scheduled in meeting room/reference library area). Reference copies can be made by researcher for fee (.20 per page); entire books may not be copied. Personal digital devices may also be used subject to copyright law.

1883 History of Jasper County, Missouri by F. A. North

1901 Biographical Record of Jasper County Missouri by Malcolm  McGregor

1912 History of Jasper County, Missouri, and its People by Joel Livingston, 2 volumes

1995 Jasper County: First Two Hundred Years by Marvin VanGilder

1923 Jasper County, Missouri, in the Civil War by Ward Schrantz

2000 & 2013 Carthage, Missouri (Images of America books) based on museum's photograpic collections

2008 Pictorial History of Carthage, Missouri by the Carthage Press

2003 Then and Now: An Architectural History of Carthage, Missouri Square and Nearby by Sue Vandergriff

1888 Carthage City Directory

Among Carthage city directories held by the museum are the years: selected directories from 1950–1999.

All City Directories not are available for walk-in use. Photocopies are available for 1888, 1895, 1900, 1905, 1909, 1923 and portions of other selected city directories.

City directories are available at the Carthage Public Library (local history section in old library area, 2nd floor) on microfilm and limited years on the shelves. City directories are found at the Jasper County Record Center, too.

A limited number of Carthage High School yearbooks and Ozark Wesleyan College yearbooks are available for free consultation, too. Check Carthage High School and College Yearbooks for updated holdings as well as links to other Carthage school websites and histories. (Carthage Public Library and the Jasper County Records Center also have yearbook collections. Carthage Library collection also includes Carthage Junior High School yearbooks that the museum does not have.)

Additional Local History Resources in Reference Library Collection (available for free, self-directed research)

Other original and photocopied books and booklets on Carthage, including selected church histories, view books, and other special subjects can be found in the library as well. A very limited number of photocopied Chamber of Commerce, DAR and Hawthorne School scrapbooks are available, too, but not our complete holdings from those three organizations.

Volunteers are needed to photocopy other scrapbooks and/or index them. Contact museum if interested.

If you are looking for information on Famous Carthaginians, please email the museum as our pages on this subject have been removed from our website with the founding of the Carthage Hall of Heroes project at the Carthage/Fair Acres YMCA. (You can access the Hall of Heroes on the internet.) See further note below about looking up other Carthage residents on Find-a-Grave.com.

Vertical File holdings now require advance appointment for access (like all other archival collections). Vertical Files are no longer available for walk-in, on-demand use.  However, some of the most requested files (such as Belle Starr, Carthage Cave, Lakeside Park, etc.) have been copied and are found in notebooks in the Reference Library and are available for free, self-directed use.  We are able to discuss our vertical file holdings with potential researchers by phone or email (preferred method) in advance of making your on-site research appointment and payment of research access fee at time of appointment. Appointments must be made 2-3 weeks in advance of visit and are subject to appropriate staff/volunteer availability.

The Powers Museum does not provide free research services for those unable to travel to the museum to use either the Reference Library Collections and/or Archival Collections. We will be happy to discuss your project by email, phone or mail, but research work and photocopying can no longer be conducted by museum staff to off-site inquirers.

If fee-based research services are required, please contact the museum for a list of research contractors available in the area.

For biographical information on former Carthage residents, please try Find-A-Grave website and search Park Cemetery, Cedar Hill Cemetery, Woodlawn and/or Oak Hill Cemetery. These main cemeteries are all located in Carthage, Missouri (Jasper County).

Carthage Resources at State Historical Society of Missouri - Rolla, Missouri

The former Western Historical Manuscripts Collection-Rolla (now part of the SHSM) microfilmed some archival holdings of the Powers Museum, including these selections from the Bank of Carthage Collection.

Bank of Carthage
Carthage Loan and Investment Company
Bank of Avilla
Carthage Horse Railway Company
Goodhealth Shoe Company

Contact the Powers Museum or SHSM for further information, especially if you need to use these resources at another location than Rolla, Missouri.

SHSM-Rolla also has other Carthage/Jasper County resources available for loan (on microfilm) and for on-site consultation in Rolla, Missouri.


Archival Resources at the Powers Museum

All archival resources listed below require advance appointment for use and payment of research access fee. This includes the oral history holdings of the Library of Congress Veterans History Project Collection.

Carthage Browns player Jimmie Bilbrey

This online guide includes descriptions of several several large archival donations from the community covering various organizations or topics including the Pollard Estate (rental records and bills for the Pollard I & II buildings on Main Street), Carthage baseball teams of the 1930s-50s, selected construction and loan records for the Jasper County Building & Loan Association, and historical records of the Bank of Carthage Bank of Carthage as well as other Carthage banks and businesses the Bank of Carthage was connected with or took over.  Other smaller gifts have added to the postcard and photograph collections featuring other Carthage subjects.  Several local men's and women's organizations such as , Carthage Council on Social Agencies, and Rhoda Fairchild Chapter, National Society of Daughters of the American Revolution for example, have donated club records and scrapbooks as groups disband or move to new meeting facilities.

Please note, selected items from the museum's archival and artifact holdings are being processed during 2016-2017 as part of an on-going digitization project and access to original materials be limited during processing periods. During 2016-17, many resources are being reboxed and checked. Part of the funding for this project was donated by the Carthage Community Foundation and by Dr. Kelly Woestman.

Archival Collection of Wright-Powers Correspondence (1880s - 1980s)

The original bequest from Marian Powers Winchester's estate includes a large collection of family correspondence, photographs, and other memorabilia related to the Wright, Powers and Winchester families.

Guide to Correspondence Collection

Advance appointment and payment of research access fee is necessary for use of this archival collection. This material is never available for walk-in, on-demand use.

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