San Leandro History Room

Welcome to the San Leandro History Room!

The San Leandro History Room has an impressive collection of books and materials on California history and local history. There are more than 7,000 books, maps, pamphlets, newspaper clippings, and City of San Leandro documents including:

  • Hayward/San Leandro city directories dating from 1925, which can provide clues for tracing the history of your house.
  • The San Leandro Historical Photograph and Document collection, which consists of many images dating from the late 1800’s, and which provide a fascinating glimpse into San Leandro’s past. The 8" x 10" black and white prints can be viewed in the San Leandro History Room or digital versions of the photos can be seen by clicking here
  • An extensive collection of yearbooks from San Leandro High School, Marina High School, Pacific High School and San Lorenzo High School, as well as Bancroft Middle School and John Muir Junior High School, which can help you find old classmates.

A Brief History of San Leandro History (Click here)


History Room Hours:

The San Leandro History Room is now open on Mondays from 5 pm to 7 pm, Tuesdays from 3 pm to 5 pm,  Wednesdays from 1 pm to 5 pm, Thursdays from 1 pm to 5 pm, Fridays from 1 pm to 5 pm and Saturdays from 3 pm to 5 pm, provided volunteer staff is available. If you plan on making a special trip to San Leandro to visit our library, please call the Information Desk at (510) 577-3971 after 12 noon the week you plan on visiting and ask for staffing status.

When the History Room is closed, please visit the Main Library's Information Desk after 12 noon to request information from the History Room. Most requested items can be brought down for patron usage. Materials in the History Room are for Library use only and cannot be checked out.

Local History Film 

Watch the film "There Was a Beginning" and learn about San Leandro history! The film runs 24 minutes in length and is shown upon request during the History Room's hours of operation. There is no charge to view the film. 

History Room Services

Free Genealogy Walk-in Workshops starting May 6, 2015! Ask our in-house volunteer family history expert how to get started researching your family history. These walk-in workshops are held on the first Wednesday of each month, holidays excepted, from 1 pm to 3 pm on a first-come, first-served basis.

Obituary Research is provided upon request. The service charge for an obituary request from the San Leandro Library is $15.00, whether the search was successful or not. Checks should be made payable to the San Leandro Public Library Foundation. Searches are made for deaths in San Leandro only. The obituary search will begin after the service charge is received.

The minimum information you will need to provide about the decedent:

  • Surname, married name for female decedents. Also husband's first name.
  • Maiden name, if known, for female decedents
  • Given (first) name as well as any known nicknames and, if a woman, husband’s given name
  • Exact Date of death
  • Place of death (as much as is known – county & state minimum)
  • Your contact information: legible name and address, phone number, and email address

Please click here for the obituary request form.

Send your request to: San Leandro Public Library, Obit Request, 300 Estudillo Avenue, San Leandro, CA  94577

Annual Programs in the History Room

March: Rancho Days in the History Room  Learn what rancho life was like during the Mexican period of California's history with demonstrations and exhibits.

First Week in June: Cherry City Celebration!  Help celebrate the annual and historical Cherry Festival with a treasure hunt and win a small bag of cherries!

October:  A Haunting in the History Room!   With a graveyard guide, visit the "graves" of famous San Leandrans and learn from their "ghosts" their fascinating history! This living history event is sure to please adults and children alike! After visiting all the ghosts, complete a haunting questionnaire and win a small bag of treats!

November:  Native American Month Observation  Learn about the history, culture, beliefs and way of life of the first inhabitants of California.

Contact Information

For more information, please call the Main Library's Information Desk at (510) 577-3971.

History Room Location

San Leandro Public Library, 300 Estudillo Avenue, San Leandro, CA 94577

Become a Volunteer for the History Room!  Click here for application.

If you are interested in history, enjoy researching San Leandro history and like helping people with their history research, join us and become a History Room researcher! If you can work 2 hours or more on a weekly basis in our beautiful History Room, fill out the application and turn it in at the Circulation Desk when you next visit the Main Library. For more information on duties and responsibilities for this position, call Mary Lee Barr, a librarian and  the library's local history specialist at (510) 577-3986.


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