Research Center

Researchers are welcome to do on-site research at the Luther Research Center and Archives located in the History House, 14 W. Cayuga St., Moravia, New York 13118 (click here for map and directions). 

The History House is staffed by volunteers and is open for visitors on Mondays from 9am to noon, March through December, except for holidays and during inclement weather. We are not open during January and February except for special events. 

We will be happy to open the house for research and tours by special appointment, however a minimum $25 donation is expected in addition to our regular research and copying fees.  A group up to six researchers may share the donation cost.  COLHS Collections Management policy requires two members be present at all times when the History House is being used for research.  Please contact us for more information.

If you are making a special visit to our area, we recommend you call ahead to confirm volunteer availability at least one week in advance.

The following is a worksheet used by the Genealogy Staff , and used by visitors at the Center:
______ Bible Records, indexed
______ Family File Folders (800+ surnames see list)
______ Abstracts of Cayuga County Newspapers 1819-1865, indexed
______ "History of Cayuga County, New York", by Elliott G. Storke, indexed by Leslie and Bertha Luther
______ "Bibliography of Cayuga County", indexed
______ "Moravia and Its Past" by Leslie Leon Luther, Indexed
______ "Historical Sketches of Moravia From 1791 to 1918" by James A. Wright, indexed
______ Moravia, Niles Vital Records, indexed L. Luther and M. Crosby
______ Atlases and Maps showing family names
______ 1828 Map of Locke, indexed by Madeline Carey
______ 1853 Map of each town, indexed by COLHS volunteers
______ 1859 Hanging Wall Map
______ 1875 Atlas
______ 1904 Atlas
______ Census Information including 1828 Quaker Census by Loren Fay
______ Scrapbooks, indexed by COLHS Volunteers
______ Local published histories of area towns
______ Church Information / booklets
______ Published Genealogies of Area Families
______ Cemetery Information: 10 volumes of 267+ Cemeteries in Cayuga County Indexed by town
______ Cemetery information from Seneca County, Tompkins County Onondaga County.
______ Photograph Collection
______ "Gazetteer of the State of New York" by J.H. French, indexed
______ "Abstract of Wills of Cayuga County, New York" by  Gertrude A. Barber, indexed
______ Kelloggsville Blacksmith Account Book (1839), indexed
______ Luther's Store Account Books(1826), indexed
______ Day Otis Kellogg's Account Book Owasco(1825), indexed
______ 1847-1851 Vital Records, indexed by Mable Crosby
______ "Tree Talks" archive from the Central New York Genealogical Society, 1968 to present

Research requests should be sent to:
c/o Cayuga-Owasco Lakes Historical Society
P.O. Box 247, 14 West Cayuga Street
Moravia, NY 13118

or by completing the form at the bottom of this page (scroll down).
Fees as of January 2008; subject to change without notice:
  • Surname Search Requested via Mail or email - COLHS volunteers conduct a checklist search of a specific name in Luther Research Center and Archives.  A fee of $20 per surname (payable in advance) includes a search of any items found in the Family Files and also covers the postage.  Up to 20 photocopies included in base fee.  Additional photocopies 25¢ per page (these will be sent to requestor after additional payment is received).  All work is done on a first come-first served basis.  COLHS will return payment to requestor if volunteers determine that no or minimal information is on hand.
  • Assisted Research – COLHS volunteers consult with visitor and conduct customized search.  Volunteers work with visitors to review files and find additional information in available COLHS resources.  May include providing guidance and training for those new to genealogy or history research.  Non-members $10.00 per hour for the first hour and $5.00 for each additional hour.  Members $5.00 per hour for the first hour and $2.50 for each additional hour.    Photocopies 25¢ per page.  Subject to availability of volunteers.  Priority will be given those who call or email in advance, otherwise on a first come-first served basis.
  • Self-directed Research (COLHS members only) – Experienced researchers can review COLHS resources independently.  Work must be done in designated areas on COLHS premises under the supervision of a trained volunteer who will retrieve requested items.  Only one item (book, file, scrapbook or box of photos) may be viewed at a time.  No charge.  Photocopies 25¢ per page.
  • Photocopies are 25¢ each (members & non-members).  There is a limit to the number of photocopies that the society will allow and there is also material that the society will not photocopy.  Due to copyright restrictions, we do not photocopy entire books, chapters, manuscripts, etc.  We encourage note taking.
    Research fees are payable to: COLHS.
    U.S. Postal Money orders and checks only (cash is also accepted if paying in person).  No credit cards.  Research paid on out of town checks may be held for bank clearance.