Celebrating & Preserving the History of Nevada County, California, Since 1944
Search and Explore Searls Historical Library Online
Nevada County’s largest collection of historical records, including photos, property and court records, old maps, wills, letters and books. Over 620,000 index records in all! The documents, records and photos themselves are only available in person, but you can now start you research online and explore 170+ years of Nevada County, Nevada City, and Grass Valley history.
Join or Volunteer
Become a member or renew your membership now.
We are looking for volunteers. Find out more about volunteer opportunities!
Find many useful research links and access thousands of Nevada County historical photos, books and maps at the Searls Historical Library.
Learn more about the Historical Society and local history by attending our free, monthly membership meetings and informative historical programs.
Visit Our Library & Museums
Searls Historical Library
Open 1pm – 4pm, Monday – Saturday
The archive of the Nevada County Historical Society. Established in 1973, the Searls Historical Library has become one of the premier libraries of materials on the area’s history… more
Nevada County Railroad Museum
Open 10am – 4pm, Saturdays and Sundays
Located in Nevada City, California, the Narrow Gauge Railroad Museum is dedicated to the preservation of local transportation history and artifacts from the narrow gauge railroad era… more
Firehouse No. 1 Museum
Open 1pm – 4pm, Wednesday – Sunday
Completed in the Spring of 1861, the Firehouse No. 1 Museum was home to Nevada Hose Company No.1 from 1861 to 1938. During those nearly 80 years, horse -drawn fire wagons and handcarts… more
North Star Mining Museum
Open 12pm – 4pm, Wednesday – Sunday
Intimately connected with the many aspects of gold mining in Nevada County, California, the North Star Mining Museum includes exhibits of mining artifacts, pelton wheels, a working Stamp Mill and… more
Support a Worthwhile Cause
Your generous contributions help to preserve Nevada County history for our future generations.