Need Genealogical Help?

You can get the help you need from two different sources at Spencer Public Library. If you can't come to the library, the staff will answer simple reference questions by mail at a cost of $5.00 plus 20 cents per copied page (black print only). You will also be charged for postage. For example, the staff will try to find an obituary of a Spencer or Clay county, Iowa, resident if you supply the exact date of death. Please provide your name and address by email or contact us so we can notify you of the total charges when we have answered your inquiry. Email: Spencer Public Library. If you need more genealogical research done, please contact Iowa Lakes Genealogical Society below.
Spencer Newspapers Online: Click Here
Only Available On The Library's Computers


The City of Spencer now offers residents the opportunity to search the City's Cemetery Databases online.  There are two separate databases, one for Riverside Cemetery and one for North Lawn Cemetery.  This new program allows residents the ability to search the cemetery database and view the location of gravesites on a map of the respective cemetery.  People may search by name of the deceased or owner of the burial plot.  These databases are up to date with the latest information that is available to City Staff.  If you have questions on how to navigate the program, please call City Hall at (712) 580-7200 and our staff will be happy to assist you.

To get started, click on the name of the Cemetery you want to search:


It is a free site and when you create your own log-in, you get access to 5 or 6 different other sources, one of which is Ancestry, for free. If you are of that Faith and can prove it, you get even more access.

Information about Rembrandt, Iowa, including schools: Under this link you will find every Rembrandt yearbook (1938 - 1979):
 In 2015 a Rembrandt alumnus started doing "online scrapbooks" not only about the school, but also about the town. There are over 75 scrapbooks throughout the website. The entire Rembrandt Diamond Jubilee book is now online.
Here's the link:  
Then click on: Publication: Diamond Jubilee - 1976
Anna Mosbo Hegna’s last paragraph of her school history (on page 17, to celebrate paying off the school building debt): “And why are we doing all these things? We all know, that the real wealth of our community is not in our fertile fields, our corn, our hogs, our cattle, but in our boys and girls; and so, we have worked and built the best that we know how, not for ourselves, but for our children, and our children’s children.”
That includes us. We’re the beneficiaries of their vision, sacrifices, and work. We owe them and the whole community so much. I think we have an obligation to pass on what they gave to all of us. Enjoy this really interesting trip down memory lane!


Iowa Lakes Genealogy Society

A chapter of the Iowa Genealogical Society

Resources at Spencer Library
  • Charlotte Brett Genealogy Collection: Contains over 3500 books, magazines and pamphlets
  • Spencer newspapers on microfilm from 1880 to the present
  • Federal census microfilms for Clay, Buena Vista, Cherokee, Dickinson, Emmet, O'Brien, Osceola, Palo Alto, and Pocahontas counties from 1840 to 1920
  • State census microfilms for these counties from 1895, 1915 and 1925
  • Vital records on microfilm from Clay, Dickinson, O'Brien and Osceola counties
Independent Local Research Services
The charge is $10/hour to do family research for you. Please email one of the individual listed below with the name of the ancestor, dates, relatives or occupation to help us narrow the search. Be sure to include your own name, address, email or other contact information.
Research Help at the Library
We will also be glad to help you do research at the Spencer Library by appointment. The following people can help you depending on their schedules. Please contact one of them to set up an appointment:

Stan Bastman
2045 370th Street
Spencer, IA 51301
phone 712-363-6389

Mary Storley
phone 712-260-7755