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House & Building History Research: Overview

A guide to researching the history of homes and other buildings.

Research Options

Related Research Guides & Webpages


Few buildings have a book or extensive article with their entire history.  Researching the history of a house or building is a process which can yield fascinating information about the building and people associated with it.  Elements of building history research include:

  • Preliminary research on the building itself and the immediate neighborhood.
  • The land or site on which the building is located
  • The building itself: original plans and architect, materials, and changes to the building over time
  • The people who designed the structure as well as those who lived in or worked in/on the building
  • Events and activities which occurred in the building

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Guide Author

Tracey Baker
Reference Librarian

Gale Family Library • Minnesota Historical Society • 345 W. Kellogg Blvd., St. Paul, MN 55102-1906 • 651-259-3300
Tuesday: 9am to 8pm • Wed. to Sat.: 9am to 4pm • Sunday & Monday: Closed • Holiday Hours