Resources in the Saint Croix Collection

For more information, contact the Information Center at 651-275-4338, ext. 4876, or email:


Birth Records Index, 1870 – 1981.
For additional information about local birth records, see the Genealogy and Family History page.


For additional information about house and building research, see the library’s House and Building History guide.

Digitized Building Permit Applications. City of Stillwater, MN, 1886 – 1945 in  the Minnesota Digital Library.  (Also available on microfilm.)
Neighborhood Histories. The City of Stillwater sponsored a compilation of number of neighborhood histories in Stillwater.
Heirloom Homes and Landmark Sites, and the Heritage Preservation Ordinance is available on the City of Stillwater web site.
There is more information on our House & Building Page



Territorial and Sate Population Census Schedules from the Minnesota Historical Society


Ascension Episcopal Church, Stillwater, Minnesota

Church of St. Augustine, South St. Paul, Minnesota

Church of Sacred Heart, St. Paul, Minnesota

Church of St. Charles, Bayport, Minnesota

Church of St. Mary, Stillwater, Minnesota

Parish of St. Joseph, Stillwater, Minnesota

Parish of St. Michael, Stillwater, Minnesota


Stillwater City Directory, Stillwater, Minnesota.

  • Stillwater City Directories available in Minnesota Digital Reflections: 1882-1883, 1887, 1890-1891, 1892-1893, 1894-1895, 1896-1897, 1898-1899
  • Photocopies of originals: 1876 – 1999* ; Microfilm editions: 1890 -1931. Many of these directories include the cities of Bayport and Oak Park Heights.
    • (*Missing 1885-1886, 1888, 1907,1916,1918, 1920-1923, 1926, 1928-1929, 1931-1936, 1939-1941, 1944, 1946-1947, 1949-1950, 1952-1953, 1955, 1957, 1959.)

Washington County, Minnesota Polk City Directory: 1999 – present.


Selected clippings from Stillwater and Twin Cities metropolitan area newspapers. A subject heading index is available.


Ancestry Library Edition
Designed to serve genealogists and others interested in researching local and family histories. Includes U.S. Federal census records between 1790 and 1920, immigration records, military records, the Social Security Death Index, the Family History Library and more. Must be searched from computers located in the library.

Identifies and inventories historical documents, personal papers, and family histories held in archives around the world. Available for remote access through the library web site.

Minnesota Digital Newspaper Hub
The Minnesota Digital Newspaper Hub is a searchable website from the Minnesota Historical Society that makes millions of pages of Minnesota newspapers available online.

Search full-text articles for the St. Paul Pioneer Press (1988 – current), the Star-Tribune (1986 – current), and selected other Minnesota newspapers. (Available only in the library)


For additional information about access to local death records see Genealogy page.


Registration lists and affidavits of German citizens in the Stillwater area during World War I on microfilm or through the Minnesota Digital Library
Summary Sheet of Registration of Alien Enemies from February 14, 1918 in Minnesota Digital Reflections


Gopher Historian, 1965-1972
Historical Whisperings from the Washington County Historical Society, 1974-current
Minnesota Genealogical Journal, 1984-2013
Minnesota Genealogist, 2002-2010
Minnesota History, 1925-2000, 2004-2020
Index to the Minnesota History Bulletin, 1915-1924
Minnesota History Interpreter, 2001-2004
Minnesota Preservationist
Pipost : St. Croix Valley Genealogical Society newsletter, 1982-current
Prison Mirror, 2005-current
Roots: an educational service of the Minnesota Historical Society, 1987-1993
The Minnesota Historical Society has a full list of other publications that are useful for historical research.


Northfield Bank Robbery of 1876, Northfield, Minnesota. Selected letters, reminiscences and government records on microfilm.  More details on the content of this collection courtesy of the Minnesota Historical Society.



“Marriages at St. Michael’s Roman Catholic Church, Part I: 1852 -1872, and Part II: 1873 – 1899.” (Index) (Photocopy excerpted from Minnesota Genealogist, Autumn 2009 and Winter 2009 – 2010 isues.)
Washington County Marriage Data, 1849 – 1875 (Index). Photocopy excerpted from the Minnesota Genealogical Journal, Vols. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 10, 11, 12, 13.
St. Croix County, WI (Minnesota Territory), Marriage Data (Index), 1843. Photocopy excerpted from the Minnesota Genealogical Journal, Vol. 2



Naturalization Records. Washington County, MN, 1847 – 1944


Newspapers aren’t indexed or searchable. The library has a limited file of newspaper clippings by topic. 
Country Messenger
Daily Call, August, 1890 – December, 1890 on microfilm
Daily Times, October, 1897 – August, 1898 on microfilm
Fishwrapper, Summer, 1977 – September, 1988 on microfilm
Historical Minneapolis Tribune (1867-1922)
Lowdown, St. Croix Valley Area (formerly St. Croix Valley Press) The library has a digital index to the “weekly feature story”, from 2001 to the present.
Marine Messenger, 1975 – 1986
Prison Mirror, 1887 – 1982 on microfilm or The Prison Mirror from 1887-1894  and The Mirror from 1894-1925 from the Minnesota Digital Newspaper Hub
St. Croix Union, 1854 – 1857
St. Paul Pioneer Press (1/1/1988 – current) through Newsbank (available only in the library)
Star Tribune (1/1/1986 – current) through Newsbank (available only in the library)
Stillwater Courier News / Courier News, 1988 – May 7, 2009.
Stillwater Daily Sun, 1881 – 1884
Stillwater Democrat, 1858 – 1891
Stillwater Gazette (M – F; 3 days a week), 1884 – 2014. Access to ongoing archival files is uncertain.
Stillwater Evening  Gazette 1870 – 1954 on microfilm
Stillwater Daily Journal, March, 1915 – May, 1915
Stillwater Lumberman, 1875 – 1881
Stillwater Messenger, 1857 – 1928 or 1856-1868, 1870-1928 from the Minnesota Digital Newspaper Hub
Stillwater News, 1932 – 1943
Stillwater Post Messenger, 1928 – 1950
Stillwater Republican, 1868 – 1870 from the Minnesota Digital Newspaper Hub
Stillwater Trade News, 1930 – 1931
Washington County Journal, 1893 – 1918
Washington County Post, 1920 – 1928


Index to Obituaries Published in the Stillwater Gazette. Indexing is ongoing. Start year is 1997. Inquire with staff.
Obituaries Published in the Courier New 1988 – through May 7, 2009.

  • These guides include name, date the obituary appeared in the newspaper, and funeral date.

Obituaries in Scrapbooks.


The library has a small selection of oral histories recorded on audio cassette. Indexed.


The SPL collection includes the following sets. A master index is available.

Assorted and Miscellaneous Photographs

Assorted photographs of Stillwater people and scenes given to the library by various donors.

Holcombe Family Photograph Collection

Images are primarily portraits and building interiors from 1893 – 1908.

House Photographs & Index (Rivertown Restoration)

Photographs of Stillwater houses taken in 1977 by members of Rivertown Restoration organization.

House Photographs Index

Index of house photographs held by the Washington County Historical Society. Most of the photographs are of house exteriors. Indexed by street name. Dates are not included in the index.

Keech/Tuttle Project

Photographs taken by Stillwater residents Deb Keech and Steve Tuttle for a college history class project. The photographers selected a number of 1880’s photographs from the St. Croix Collection (mainly John Runk photos) and replicated the scenes for the year 1986. Each pair of images is accompanied by a brief narrative.

Sternwheel Packet Photos

The library has a few of these in various collections, and the Digital Public Library has a number of photos of sternwheels photographed in Stillwater or built in Stillwater. Tugboat photos from DPLA.

Portrait Photos Index

Index of portrait photographs held by the Washington County Historical Society.

Postcard Collection

Scenes in and around Stillwater, Minnesota, dating from the 1800’s.

Runk and Wolff Collection

Includes photographs taken and collected by Stillwater photographers John Runk and Mel Wolff. Many of the Wolff photographs are photographs he took of already existing photographs. The focus of the collection is Stillwater and the surrounding area from 1860 – the 1960’s. The collection is organized both by subject and by time period. An original index of the collection is also available. Photos were donated to the Stillwater Public Library by the photographers. Another set of the Runk photos is available at the Minnesota Historical Society.

Sinclair Stereopticon Slides

James Sinclair was a Stillwater area photographer from approximately 1876 to 1890. The library holds physical copies of a number of Stillwater photographs, and there are even more available through the Digital Public Library.

Stillwater Public Library Reorganization & Remodeling

Collection of photographs and slides taken during the remodeling of 1986-87.

Wilson Photographs

Photographs taken by Chester Wilson. The set includes images of people and scenes in the Stillwater area from the early 1900’s.

See also: City of Stillwater (e.g. Heirloom and Landmark Sites program); Washington County Historical Society; the Collections Online, Minnesota Historical Society; and Minnesota Reflections: Minnesota Digital Library, and MN Video Vault, a service of Twin Cities Public Television.


Warden’s Record Book (Minnesota State Prison), 1853 – 1879. (Microfilm).
Minnesota State Prison biennial report 1896-1948.


Alumni of Stillwater High School, 1876-1915 in Minnesota Reflections.
The Kabekonian (Stillwater Area High School). Holdings include: 1916; 1917; 1920; 1922 – present.


Newspaper clippings and miscellaneous paraphernalia compiled in scrapbooks. Indexes for some volumes are available. Various time periods, beginning 1882 through 1971. Check the library online catalog under “Scrapbooks” for holdings.


Stillwater Property Tax Assessment Records fromCity of Stillwater, Minnesota.
Tax Lists, 1861 – 1931. from the Washington County Auditor