Local History

The Pruyn Collection of Albany History is the local history collection of the Albany Public Library. It is housed in the Albany History Room, which is opposite the Edgar Tompkins Memorial Computer Lab on the second floor of the Main Library. Albany’s long and fascinating history can be explored through books, pamphlets, clippings, newspapers, and photographs. The lives of citizens can be discovered through city directories, census records, and newspapers. While the primary focus of the collection is on the history of Albany City and County, there are also materials relating to other communities in the Capital District.


The Pruyn Collection Hours:

Mondays from 4 to 7 pm -- Every week

Wednesdays from 9 am to 1 pm -- First and third Wednesday of each month

Fridays from 2 to 5 pm -- Every week

Saturdays from 1:30 to 5 pm -- Second and fourth Saturday of each month


City Historian Tony Opalka is available on the second and fourth Saturday of each month from 2 to 4 pm to assist the public with their local history research

For more information, contact the Main Library's Reference Desk at 427-4303, or email localhistory@albanypubliclibrary.org for more specialized assistance.

Pruyn Collection - A list of local history and genealogical materials available for use in the Albany History Room.

Online history & genealogy resources - Useful web links and research databases.

Finding Birth, Death, and Marriage Records


Mobile App: Albany: Then & Now

Android - iPhone/iPad/iPod

This app provides a map for a walking tour of Albany's amazing architecture and more than 100 historic photographs of Albany streets. Produced through the cooperation Troy Web Consulting and the Historic Albany Foundation.


The Story of My House Program

Slides from a presentation on how to research your property's history by the Albany City Historian and the Historic Albany Foundation's Director of Presentation Services (June 1, 2013).

Last updated: March 27, 2014
program guide
search databases
support your library
Sign Up for Updates