Research Room

Visitors may conduct research at the Beltrami County History Center for FREE!

The Research Room holds resources on Beltrami County history, including: access to; digitized and microfilmed local newspapers spanning 1896-1985; Vertical Subject Files; People Files; Bemidji High School yearbooks; Bemidji City Directories; cemetery records; maps; township histories; other archival records on the history of Beltrami County and Minnesota.

We strongly encourage contacting us ahead of time to schedule appointments, but it is not required. With advanced notice, staff will have time to pull materials from the Research Room and archives in advance to help you achieve your research goals and save you time.


Research Requests

Beltrami County History Center staff will conduct research for individuals and groups for a fee of $15 per hour (minimum 1 hour). Our Assisted Research services depend on staff and volunteer availability, and we carry out research requests in the order that we receive them. Staff and volunteers will begin research after receipt of payment, and most requests take about a week to complete. Even if the search is unsuccessful, payment is still due. We cannot guarantee we will have the information you request, although a thorough search will be conducted. The fee includes PDF scans of records. Additional printing and use fees apply for paper copies and high-quality digital photographs. Requests for Assisted Research must be made in writing (or via e-mail) in advance. Please contact us to make a request.


Obituary Requests

Researchers may request copies of obituaries for a $5 fee per obituary. Name and date of death required. If we cannot locate a particular obituary, we will try to direct you to where it may be obtained. Please note that in the late 1800s and early 1900s, most newspapers were published only weekly, and obituaries were included sporadically. If you would like to first find out if we have a particular obituary, please contact us.



BCHS maintains an extensive collection of historical photographs and offers high-quality digital copies (JPG format) to visitors and researchers on request for a $5 fee per image. Additional rights and use fees ranging from $5-$30 may apply. Visit the Beltrami County History Center or contact us for more information.

Online Resources

Online Collection

Search the Beltrami County Historical Society's collections, including photographs, manuscripts, and artifacts. At this time, only a small portion of our collections are available online. To find more records, visit us or contact us.

Scherling Photography
Studio Negatives

The Beltrami County History Center houses the Scherling Photography Studio negatives spanning 1941-2005. High-quality digital copies are available to order. Search for a photograph or contact us. High-quality digital images available for a $5 fee per image. Additional rights fees may apply.

Database is in progress. It currently spans about 1941-1961.

Helpful History Links

Go here to find links to databases, catalogs, newspapers, maps, and other resources for genealogy and research on Beltrami County and Minnesota.


Visit our video page for historical footage, oral histories, and other video resources from our YouTube page and other local organizations and individuals.

Contact Us

Feel free to contact us for requests and further information. Please note that our website host sometimes blocks AOL and Yahoo e-mail addresses from reaching us.
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