Close up of documents, books, and maps from the Ellis Little Local History Room

Our Local History Collections

From physical collections to our digital archives, Waterloo Public Library offers many resources and tools to explore your local history.

Inside the Ellis Little Local History Room

Waterloo Public Library preserves and provides access to material that documents the history of the City of Waterloo. This material is held in the Ellis Little Local History Room which is located on the upper level of the Main Library. The room is named after Ellis Little, Waterloo’s own “Mr. History” and local history advocate. Visit the Ellis Little Local History Room during regular library hours or start exploring below.

What’s Available

Waterloo Historical Society Volumes

Copies of the Waterloo Historical Society volumes are available from the first publication in 1913 to present. Waterloo Historical Society Bibliography is also available to find articles published prior to 1991. Select volumes may be borrowed from the regular lending collection.


Browse yearbooks from Waterloo schools including Waterloo Collegiate Institute, Wilfrid Laurier University, University Heights Secondary School, Kitchener-Waterloo Collegiate Institute, St. David’s Catholic Secondary School and Bluevale Collegiate Institute.


The Waterloo Chronicle newspaper has been digitized and is available to view on Our Ontario. The following newspapers are available on microfilm at the Main Library: Waterloo Region Record (1920-2017), The Berliner (1859-1879) and Berlin News Record (1907-1916).

Index Records

Over 12,000 articles from local publications have been indexed. These titles include the Waterloo Region Record, Exchange Business Magazine, Grand Magazine, Highlights Magazine, Most Magazine, Rex Magazine and more. Use keyword searches to locate records then visit the Ellis Little Local History Room to read the complete article.

Ellis Little Papers

Explore the unique research papers of local historian Ellis Little. These papers include his personal notes, memorabilia and written articles on a wide variety of local history topics that captured his interest. Select parts of this collection have been digitized and are available on Our Ontario.

Explore our Digital Collections

Looking for digitized items? Search Waterloo Public Library’s digital archive of historical photos, newspapers, and more at Our Ontario.

Beyond the Ellis Little Local History Room

These helpful online resources can assist you with your family and local history research.

Have Questions? Contact Us.

Curious about what else you can discover in the Ellis Little Local History Room? We are happy to answer your questions and assist you with your research.