Are you curious about Wauwatosa’s history?

The Judith A. Simonsen Research Library contains historical photographs, reference materials and documents from Wauwatosa families, schools, churches and businesses. Volunteer researchers use the library’s resources to answer your inquiries, and also identify and make available library materials for visitors to do their own research.

The library is named for the late Judy Simonson. A retired archivist from the Milwaukee County Historical Society, Judy generously established professional policies for the library and collections.

Guidelines and Fees

WHS volunteers will provide answers to research questions, when feasible, with the following guidelines:

If your request is one that can be readily answered (for instance, by immediate reference to Historic Wauwatosa newsletters, Wauwatosa News archives, Wauwatosa City Directories, or WHS archives), there is a $5 fee. Other research requires a $20 per hour research fee.

For WHS members, initial inquiries that can be readily answered are free.

Please provide as much detail as possible, including dates, address or location, and full names (indicate birth or married names). Research volunteers may take up to three weeks to respond to your inquiries. For visitors who would like to do their own research, please list the materials that you need. The volunteer will contact you when they are ready.

Scans of historical photos are available for purchase. Scans of materials are available for additional fees.


Hours

Wednesdays: 9 am to 1 pm

Other times by reservation only.

Reservations can be made by emailing the office or calling (414) 774-8672.

Location

The Judith A. Simonsen Research Library is located on the second floor of the Kneeland-Walker House (7406 Hillcrest Drive, Wauwatosa).

The Kneeland-Walker House is not handicapped accessible.

Interested in Donating Materials?

We are especially interested in family histories, historic photos, blueprints or abstracts of title from area homes, and records from closed/closing businesses.


Additional Resources

The WHS does not maintain vital records, probate records, or tax records. Many of these are available at the Milwaukee County Courthouse.

Wauwatosa City Hall

  • City Assessor Office

  • Permit Office

  • City Engineer

Wauwatosa Public Library

  • Newspapers on microfilm

  • Atlas microfiche

Milwaukee County Historical Society

  • Naturalization records

  • Civil Court cases

  • Coroners' inquests

Milwaukee Public Library

  • Vital records pre-1912

  • Local History Room (genealogy)

Wisconsin Historical Society