Copies of Material

Clayton Library will accept requests for copies of materials only when an exact citation is provided. Depending on the type of materials requested, your query may be forwarded to one of several locations within the Houston Public Library system. Please send exact citations.

Photocopies are $1.00 per citation plus $1.00 per page. Microprint copies are $2.00 per citation plus $1.00 per page. Please send payment along with the exact information. Checks and money orders are accepted and should be made out to "Houston Library Foundation."

Clayton Library staff members are trained to offer research strategies and assist the researcher in locating materials which will aid in their research. We are unable to perform in-depth research for patrons. Requests that would involve extensive searches through a variety of sources are considered in-depth research. Clayton's usual practice with requests for in-depth research is to send a list of private researchers with whom you can contract for services. The presence of a name on this list does not constitute an endorsement by Clayton Library. For a copy of the list, send a self-addressed stamped envelope (SASE) to Clayton Library.

Email requests

Mail inquiries should be sent to the following address:
Houston Public Library
Clayton Library Center for Genealogical Research
5300 Caroline Street
Houston, TX 77004-6896

Book a tour

If you would like to have a group come in for a tour and/or introduction to genealogy please call 832-393-2600 and speak with the Manager, Sue Kaufman, Assistant Manager, Melissa Hayes or Librarian, Irene B. Walters.

LDS Loan Program

Clayton Library is a microfilm affiliate library

Get access to billions of records by using microfilm from the largest family history library in the world.  This ordering service is your gateway to a vast collection of microfilm genealogical and historical research sources. The service allows you to loan films directly to affiliate libraries. The loan is free, but there is a small shipping and handling charge for each film.

Having the FHL resources at your fingertips increases your sweep of research materials.  The physical Clayton Library collection is international in scope, yet bound by a brick and mortar building.  The FHL library microfilm allows users of the Clayton Library a vast storage area for materials that might be applicable in your research, in Salt Lake City, but yet, available in Houston.

To identify what materials are available for your geographic location, family surname, or specific record type or title, visit, and begin your search in the catalog.

Further instructions can be found through the FamilySearch online film ordering users guide.

Questions? Read our FAQ's or call the Library 832-393-2600

Frequently Asked Questions

The FHL is the largest genealogical library in the world. Through the Family History Centers and FamilySearch Affiliate Libraries, they make many of their holdings available in microform to genealogy researchers on a loan basis, for a small processing fee.

1. Do I need to be a member of the LDS Church to order microform? No. The LDS Church makes their library materials and online databases available to everyone, regardless of religious affiliation.

2. Can I order microform by email or phone? No. According to the new FamilySearch guidelines, you must personally place your order online, and prepay using a credit or debit card or Pay Pal. Visit to register and place an order. Patrons are strongly encouraged to read the Microfilm Use Agreement.

3. Can I order the microforms at a library? Yes through the website.

4. Will someone be available to help me with microform orders? Yes, staff is available in person on or on the phone to help you through the process.

5. Can the microform be sent to another library? When patrons first register on the Family Search site, they must select a Family History Center or Library Affiliate where they want their order delivered.

6. What is the cost to rent microfilm and microfiche? Due to the increase in the price of raw microfilm stock and the decreasing availability of this product on the market, and higher costs to ship microfilm, it has become necessary for FamilySearch to increase the price of film loans in family history centers. As of 15 February 2012 the following prices will be in effect for film loans in the United States and Canada: Short-term film loan 7.50 Short-term film loan renewal 7.50 Extended film loan 18.75 Microfiche loan 4.75 (this price has not increased)

7. How do I pay for an order? Under the new FamilySearch Online Ordering guidelines, payment must be made by credit or debit card or Pay Pal.

8. Do I have to pay when I place the order? Yes. Payment must be made online before the order can be processed.

9. Do I need Houston Public library card to order microforms? No.

10. After I order the microform, how long will it be before I receive it? It may take an average of 10-20 days to receive microform materials after they are ordered.

12. How will I know when the microform is available for me to use? FamilySearch will notify you by email when the microform material is available at the designated Library Affiliate or Family History Center.

13. Where do I pick up the microform? Microform materials will be delivered to the Library Affiliate or Family History Center that you selected at the time the order was placed.

14. How long can I keep microform(s)? Orders will be held for your use at the Clayton Library William Clayton Historical Home on Library property at 5300 Caroline, Houston, TX 77004 for approximately 90 days before microfilm must be either returned or renewed. Microfiche is loaned for an indefinite period and will be retained by the Clayton Library / Houston Public Library

15. What if I'm not finished with the film by the date it's due? Microfilm on Short-Term Loan may be renewed up to two times at a cost of $5.50 per renewal.

16. What if I order the wrong microform? While we are happy to assist, you are ultimately responsible for the selection of microform(s) ordered. Under FamilySearch Online Ordering guidelines, the rental fee will not be reimbursed if the microform does not contain the hoped-for information. For further information visit or call Clayton Library at 832-393-2600.

The Clayton Town Crier & Clayton Extra

Once a quarter the Clayton Library staff sends out The Clayton Town Crier, an e-mail newsletter that offers insight into the research resources available at Clayton Library with a listing of upcoming events and exhibits.

The Clayton Library staff also sends out The Clayton Extra, a monthly e-mail newsletter that announces the classes, events, and exhibits occurring that month. The Extra also gives information about things that may affect library users that month, i.e. construction, road closures, etc.

If you would like to sign up for either of these newsletters please call the Clayton Library at 832-393-2600 and ask for a newsletter staff member.


Other services offered by Houston Public Library including interlibrary loan can be found on the Houston Public Library's Services page.

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