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The library will be closed Monday, October 10, for Indigenous Peoples' Day. 

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Falls Church History Room

Collection Overview

ARCHIVES: The FCHR contains archives covering a variety of City related individuals and organizations, including the Falls Church Historical Commission, the League of Women Voters Falls Church, and the Village Preservation and Improvement Society.

ASSESSMENT RECORDS:  Assessment records are available in the FCHR for following:

  • Proposed Assessments books (1981-2003)
  • City of Falls Church Land Book (2004-2011 and 2013)
  • Capitation taxes (1950-1964)
  • Personal property records (1949-1955)

Current – and some historic – assessment and sales records can be found online through the City’s Real Property Assessment Finder.

The FCHR – while not the City archive- does contain a number of City related documents and reports. Many may also be found online through the City’s website.

CITY COUNCIL

  • Town & City Council Minutes (1880-present)
  • City Council Agendas (1997-present)
  • Budgets (1949-present)
  • Capital Improvement Plans (1960-present)
  • Proceedings (1997-present)
  • Ordinances (1950-present) & Resolutions (1969-present)

BOARDS & COMMISSIONS 

  • Charter Review Committee (1965-1981)
  • Falls Church School Board (1934-1958)
  • Broad Street Improvements, Susanne Bachtel (1963-1991)
  • Historical Commission
  • [Mayor] Kellogg Reports Monthly (1951-1955)
  • Planning Commission Minutes (1937-1997)
  • Planning Commission Proceedings (1980-present)

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

  • Chamber of Commerce: City Business Directory (misc 1989-2005)
  • Chesapeake & Potamic: Alexandria, Arlington, Fairfax County (1940)
  • Chesapeake & Potamic: Falls Church & Vicinity (1947)
  • Collins Fairfax County Directory (1906)
  • Community Directories (roughly 1978-2010)
  • Directory of Residents Who Lived in Falls Church Prior to 1940
  • Haines Directory: Northern Virginia Suburban (1980- 2020)
  • Hill’s City Directory (biennially 1957-1975, 1972)
  • White Pages (roughly 1980-2018)

GENEALOGY:

  • Family histories
  • Marriage and death notices
  • Cemetery records
  • Voter registration books (1901-1930s)
  • Voter registration rolls (1965-1970s)

MAPS:

  • Approximately 500 maps (1608-present)
  • Topographical, plat and Sanborn maps
  • Site and street plans

The FCHR houses a number of Falls Church related newspapers and community newsletters, either in print or on microfilm/fiche.

A number of Falls Church related newspaper can also be accessed online:

Several thousand Falls Church death notices and obituaries have been clipped and scanned and can be searched online in our Digital Collection and Index.

The library also provides online access to The Washington Post (1887-present), which can be searched for local obituaries and death notices.

The collection includes more than 120 oral histories recorded by H.H. Douglas and the Falls Church Historical Commission from the late 1960s through 1981.

PHOTOGRAPHS: The historic photo collection includes over 20,000 negatives and 8,000 prints. Several thousand images have been scanned and can be searched and viewed online in our Digital Collection and Index.

SCRAPBOOKS: The collection includes several community scrapbooks, including:

  • City of Falls Church (1973-1976)
  • Falls Church Garden Club (1946-1969)
  • Falls Church Lions Club (roughly 1968-2001)
  • Mary Riley Styles Public Library (1940-2007)
  • Old Dominion Chrysanthemum Society (1970-1990)
  • Press Clippings (1945-1953)
  • Women's Club of Falls Church (1947-2000)

VERTICAL FILES: The FCHR maintains a “vertical file” of over 50 drawers of clippings and miscellaneous documents organized into 3 categories:

  • Subject
  • Street address
  • People/Families

YEARBOOKS: The library has print copies of the following yearbooks: 

  • George Mason High School (1952, 1954-2021)
  • George Mason Middle School (1984-1995, 2001)
  • Meridian High School (2022-present)
  • Jefferson High School (1935, 1937, 1939, 1945)

View & search yearbooks online from 1935-2002

  • Misc City reports & studies
  • Falls Church Historical Commission Historical Heritage Symposia (1994-1998) and misc. documents (1960-2001)
  • Pictorial Family Bible 1872-1885

 

General Histories


Gernand, Bradley E. and Netherton, Nan. A Virginia Village Revisited. Virginia Beach, VA: The Donning Company/Publishers, 2000.

Steadman, Melvin Lee. Falls Church, By Fence and Fireside. Falls Church, VA: Falls Church Public Library, 1964.

Taylor, Cathy. Historic Falls Church. Charleston, SC: Arcadia Pub, 2012.

Victorian Society of Falls Church. Victorian Falls Church. Charleston, SC: Arcadia Pub, 2007.

Wrenn, Tony P. Falls Church: History of a Virginia Village. Falls Church, VA; Historical Commission of the City of Falls Church, 1972.

 

For a Deeper Dive...


Alves, Joseph Hodges and Spelman, Harold. Near the Falls: Two Hundred Years of The Falls ChurchFalls Church, VA: The Falls Church, 1969.

Beltz, Ella C. Falls Church Presbyterian Church, 1873-1973. Falls Church, VA: Beltz, 1976.

Block, Eugene B. Above the Civil War: Thaddeus Lowe, Balloonist, Inventor, Railroad Builder. Berkeley, Calif, Howell-North Books, 1966. 

Camp, Shirley. Past Times Around Falls Church. Baltimore: Gateway Press, 1997.

Douglas, H.H. Falls Church, Places and People. Falls Church: Falls Church Historical Commission, 1981.

Falls Church City Public Schools Celebrating 50 Years: A HistoryFalls Church, VA: City of Falls Church, 1999.

Falls Church Historical News and Notes. Falls Church, VA: Village Preservation and Improvement Society, 1970. 

Footprints in Faith: Columbia Baptist Church History. Falls Church, VA: Columbia Baptist Church, 2007.  

Gernand, Bradley E. A Virginia Village Goes to War. Virginia Beach, VA: The Donning Company/Publishers, 2002.

Harrison, Noel Garraux. City of Canvas: Camp Russell A. Alger and the Spanish American War. Falls Church, VA: Falls Church Historical Commission, 1988. 

Henderson, James H. M. and Henderson, Betty F.  Molder of Men: Portrait of a “Grand Old Man,” Edwin Bancroft Henderson. New York: Vantage Press, 1985.

Jewell, Marianne H. Dulin from Saddlebags to Satellites: A Story of Faith and Service. Falls Church, Va., Dulin United Methodist Church, 1969

Jones, Carrol Anne. Doers of the World: 125 Years of History: Saint James Catholic Church, Falls Church, VA. Vienna, VA. Coronae Rosarum Publications, 2017.

Stewart, Charles Alexander. A Virginia Village: Historical Sketch of Falls Church and the Old Colonial Church. Falls Church, VA: J.H. Newell, 1904.

Wrenn, Tony P and Douglas, Henry H. Cherry Hill Farm: Falls Church, VA. Falls Church, VA: Falls Church Historical Commission, 1977. 

 

Recommended Reads

Resources

City Council Agendas, Minutes, & Videos

City Council Agendas, Minutes, & Videos
Falls Church City Council agendas, minutes and meeting recordings from 2008-present. Also includes Planning Commission meetings.
View Resource

Falls Church Assessment Property Finder

Real Property Assessments
Search City of Falls Church property assessments and sales.
View Resource

Falls Church History Room Digital Collection

Falls Church History Room Digital Collection
Search photos, death notices, and indexed records from the MRSPL's Falls Church History Room.
View Resource

GMHS Yearbooks

GMHS Yearbooks
Searchable copies of George Mason High School yearbooks through 2002. Also includes Jefferson High School yearbooks from 1935, 1937, 1939, and 1945.
View Resource

HeritageQuest

HeritageQuest
Genealogy data from U.S. Census records 1790-1950 with over 25,000 original page images of full-text family and local histories, etc.
View Resource

Municode - Falls Church Code

Municode - Falls Church Code
Online acces to full City of Falls Chuch Code and Charter.
View Resource

Washington Post (current)

The Washington Post
Search and view articles from The Washington Post from 1987-present.
View Resource

Washington Post (historical)

The Washington Post
Search and view articles from The Washington Post from 1877-2006.
View Resource