The Butterfield Memorial Research Library
Library Hours:
Appointment only: Tuesday - Friday at 10am - 12pm
Public Hours: Tuesday & Wednesday at 12-4pm 

*Closed for major holidays and inclement weather. 

Library.jpgThe Butterfield Memorial Research Library is a non-circulating reference and research library with topics relating primarily Bay County history.  However, we are often able to help with searches spanning the United States. 
We make every effort to keep the library open.  It is strongly suggested that anyone with travel or time constraints please call before their intended visit to make sure the library is staffed.
Some of our holdings include:
A substantial holding of Bay City Polk Directories dating to 1866; insurance maps of Bay City of various years from 1890s to 1960;  bird's-eye view maps of Bay City from 1867, 1879 and 1891;  major histories of Bay County dating back to 1875;  Genealogical materials;  information on local businesses representing all aspects of commerce and industry;  materials on architecture, historic preservation and restoration of historic structures and much more.

Please note that due to many factors, other primary resource items in our collection may not be available for research at the present time. 

Do Your Own Research:
Please feel welcome to visit us during our open hours.  Jamie Kramer, Research Library Manager, will assist you with your efforts at no cost for research time.  Photocopies of some items are available for a fee.
Submit a Written Research Request:

 If you are unable to visit the Butterfield Memorial Research Library, Jamie Kramer, will be happy to perform research for you upon request.  Research requests can be submitted two ways:

  • Online: Email our Research Library Manager:
  • By mail: "Attention: Jamie Kramer, Butterfield Memorial Research Library, Bay County Historical Society, 321 Washington Avenue, Bay City, MI 48708"
Once we have received your request we will perform the research to the best of our abilities. In your email or letter please include your research question and any known information that may be relevant. This could possibly include:
  • Your address
  • The address of the home you are searching
  • Ancestor’s name
  • Birthdates and place
  • Ancestor’s spouse’s name (maiden name)
  • Parent’s names
  • Death dates and place
  • Residence of ancestor
  • List any previous sources you have used (if applicable)
  • Any additional relevant information

Also indicate in your letter or email the maximum amount you would wish to spend on this research.  Some larger requests may require a deposit before we can start.  Please do not send payments before you are billed unless you are asked to place a deposit.  A response to your research will depend on the volume of requests and the detail you include in your initial letter.  Requests will be completed within 3 to 4 weeks in the order in which they are received.    

Research Fees:

Per Hour: $20.00
Letter-sized photocopy: $0.25 each
Postage:  Any additional postage 
**You will be charged the research fee whether or not we are able to find the information you request.  This will help cover our time.  

Please send your remittance (made payable to the “Bay County Historical Society”) to:
Bay County Historical Society
Attn: Jamie Kramer, Butterfield Memorial Research Library
321 Washington Avenue,
Bay City, MI 48708  

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Bay County Historical Society Museum
321 Washington Avenue
Bay City, MI 48708
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