Step 1: Submit a family history research question using the form below. Be specific; tell us exactly what information you are looking for. This initial request should include full name, maiden name (if applicable), birth and death dates, and any other relevant information about the person you are researching. Include all resources you have contacted thus far. We will then be able to determine whether we can help you easily or if your request would require further research into our archives. We usually respond within one week by email. Please note that 19th century resources are very limited.
If we determine that further research into our archives would be necessary and you decide to proceed, a fee would apply. Please follow these steps:
Step 2: Payment. An initial prepaid fee of $20 ($10 for Society members) is required to begin a search of our archives. Payment can be made by check mailed to our post office box address or processed through our online store (see Fees). This fee is non-refundable; we cannot guarantee results.
Inquiries are handled by our knowledgeable staff who can easily and quickly locate information in our archives. Some of these in-house resources include: surname and subject files; newspaper and clippings collections; historic maps; telephone, yearbook and other directories; public school records (limited); local cemetery records; state census; other library resources including written histories of Staten Island.
Note: This initial fee covers up to one hour of work (research and report). We will notify you in advance if additional time is required to complete the search and report. The hourly rate is $30.
Step 3: Findings: The researcher will prepare a written report of findings that may include suggestions for possible continued research (for example, other repositories that could prove helpful). The report will be sent by email at no additional charge. A $5 fee is requested for a printed report sent by U.S. mail. Payment of any additional fees, if applicable, for additional time or services is requested before the report is sent.
Off-site: Other research services may be requested for the following off-site depositories: Surrogate Court Records [wills], County Clerk's Office [deeds], Staten Island Advance [microfilmed newspaper]. The research fee is $25 for the first hour, $10 each additional hour. Photocopied material: $ .25 per page; scanned and printed photographic images (4x6) $4 each.
"If you don't recount your family history, it will be lost. Honor your own stories and tell them too. The tales may not seem very important, but they are what binds families and makes each of us who we are." ~ Madeleine L'Engle