Willard Library Newspaper Collection: Search and view historical local newspapers on library computers (1846-present), or in the comfort of your home with your Willard Library card (1846-1923 only).
Battle Creek Shopper News: Search and view the entire collection of the Battle Creek Shopper on library computers, or in the comfort of your home with your Willard Library card.
Battle Creek Enquirer: 2002-present, full-text, searchable database available from home with a library card.
Willard Library Newspaper Index covers the local newspapers from 1967-March 2012
Obituaries: Request an obituary. Dates of obituaries occurring between 1967-March 2012 can be found in the newspaper index. Prior to 1967, you must know the approximate year of the obituary you are requesting.
Digitized yearbooks are available for the five area public high schools. The collection currently includes: Battle Creek Central High School (1894-2002); Harper Creek High School (1962-2001); Lakeview High School (1925-2002); Pennfield High School (1979-2002); and Springfield High School (1956-1989). Yearbooks are accessible online with a current Willard Library card or on-site to guests.
Search and view Battle Creek City Directories (1880-2015) onsite, or in the comfort of your home with your Willard Library card (1890-1923).
Tales of Battle Creek
Authored by the city's ideal biographer, Berenice Bryant Lowe, in 1976, Tales of Battle Creek "...provides a loving, spirited, and always accurate chronicle of the who-what-when-where-why of Battle Creek's past" with more than 16 pages of photographs of early Battle Creek. Brought to you through a collaboration with Heritage Battle Creek.
Listen to an interview with Bernice Lowe conducted by a Lakeview High School student. This file was provided to Willard Library by Lakeview High School Library.
Historical Images of Battle Creek, Michigan
The Historical Images of Battle Creek collection includes more than 17,000 photographs and is comprised of five collections:
- Battle Creek Homes & Buildings, c. 1940: A catalog, by street, of all of the buildings within the 1940 boundaries of Battle Creek with images
- Photographs from Battle Creek's History: A searchable selection of 5,500 photographs selected from the files of Willard Library from 19th and 20th century Battle Creek.
- Dorothy Martich Black History Photo Archive: Represents many years of research by local historians Dorothy and Michael Martich documenting the history of the Battle Creek African-American community.
- Country Club Hills Association: circa 1923
- Stuart A. Lassen Historical Battle Creek Postcard Collection: Stuart A. Lassen spent 21 years collecting postcards, advertising and trade cards of early Battle Creek. Through Lassen's generous donation to digitize this collection, he created a legacy by sharing Battle Creek's history with future generations.
Construction of the Old Merchants Building Photo Collection
Links to books about Battle Creek and Calhoun County history, including W.K. Kellogg, Kellogg Co., Sojourner Truth, Underground Railroad, and C.W. Post.
Sanborn Fire Maps
Sanborn Fire Map
Additional Sanborn Fire Maps can be found through the Library of Congress.
Face to Face with Dave Eddy
A collection of local interviews conducted by news host Dave Eddy at Access Vision.
Discover the wills and probate records of your family members and ancestors to learn what they left behind. The Calhoun County Probate Index will provide the the probate file number to locate the probate records for an individual. Although the Index contains entries from 1835 through 1976, the collection of files on microfilm (located at the Helen Warner Branch) are not complete. Please contact us to see if we have the file you're looking for.