The Historical Society of Montgomery County is located in a residential neighborhood just outside of downtown Norristown, PA, the county seat of Montgomery County. You’ll find HSMC bursting at the seams with materials on the history and genealogy of Montgomery County; a portion of their collection is accessible for researchers and many more items are in the back storage and basement of the building. The HSMC building also contains an exhibit area and meeting room displaying objects relevant to the county. Especially impressive is the clock collection, making one say instantly “They don’t make them like that anymore!”
There is a card catalog of surnames which is a great place to start to see what may be collected already on a family you are researching. The marriages and obituaries for The Norristown Times Herald newspaper are indexed in a binder. These obituaries are really more similar to death notices than actual obituaries listing next of kin, circumstances and funeral arrangements. However, The Times Herald was printing in the early-to-mid 1800’s, well before the state of PA issued death certificates, and the newspaper may be one of the few ways to confirm a death date for an ancestor. The HSMC has two ScanPro microfilm readers that can print pages of their microfilm holdings. Ask staff for help in adjusting the machine for best results.
The Historical Society of Montgomery County has published a scholarly journal called The Bulletin of the Historical Society of Montgomery County Pennsylvania since 1895 and you can find an index of all the articles onsite as well as the journals themselves. The years 1936-1955 are available online as PDF’s but not searchable.
Like most historical societies they have collected genealogies of families from Montgomery County. Call or email to see if they have one for your family. The website has an index of some of genealogy collection but it seems like only a portion of their resources from what I can tell. There are also onsite reference books for the county as well as neighboring counties. Several drawers of maps going back to 1840 will help you navigate your way through where your ancestors lived.
Short biographies are on the hsmcpa.org website of people interred at Historic Montgomery County Cemetary. Maybe you have an ancestor on this list! In fact, if weather allows, there is a printable walking tour of the cemetery on the website highlighting the life and time of several prominent Montgomery citizens. Worth checking out and I plan to do this myself soon.
The Historical Society of Montgomery County, PA is located at 1654 DeKalb Street, Norristown. There is a fee to research here, and fees for copies/print outs. The HSMC is open Monday-Thursday, and the first Saturday of the month, although in my experience it is crowded and noisy on Saturdays with people using the meeting room and casually stopping in. If doing intensive research, a weekday is better if you can manage it. The free parking is behind the building, down a narrow driveway, and the entrance is also in the back. Full details on their website hsmcpa.org under the ‘Visit’ tab.