Local history

Page updated on: 21/02/2018

The Reference Departments at Ammanford, Carmarthen and Llanelli Libraries offer a wide range of reference works, including items of local interest, Welsh language books, encyclopaedias & directories, specialist journals, newspapers and magazines.  We also hold back copies of local newspapers and offer free access to the genealogy websites Ancestry.com and FindMyPast.

We have a large collection of books relating to the local area, and there are also a number of resources available to support users in general research, local studies and family history.

For anyone interested in the history of the area, our extensive Local Collections are of particular significance.  In addition to books, they also contain unpublished items such as commemorative booklets for various groups and institutions, newspaper articles, and so on.

In particular, the Local Collection held at Llanelli Library consists of over 14,000 items, the majority of which relate to Llanelli and the former Borough area.  It contains documents relating to individuals, buildings, businesses & estates, scrapbooks, notebooks, souvenirs, certificates and ephemera such as concert tickets, posters & programmes.

Llanelli Library’s Local Illustration Collection is another invaluable resource containing over 7,000 photographs, again mainly of the former Llanelli Borough area.  The images cover a range of subjects from street scenes, buildings, people, places, and events from the 19th Century to modern times.  The Local Collection and Local Illustration Collection can be searched in the same way as books through our library catalogue.


Local newspapers are available in hard copy and on microfilm as follows:

Ammanford Library

  • Amman Valley Chronicle 1912 onwards

Carmarthen Library

  • Carmarthen Journal 1810 (1st) to the present
  • Welshman  1832-1945
  • Celtic  News 1923-27
  • Cymric Times 1927-1936
  • Carmarthen Times 1962-1989
  • Carmarthen Citizen 1989-1997
  • Carmarthen Herald 1997-2007
  • Amman Valley Chronicle 1913-1959
  • South Wales Guardian 1960- to present

Llanelli Library

  • Llanelly & County Guardian June 1863-1947
  • Llanelly Labour News October 1924-April 1926
  • Llanelly Mercury December 1891-1960
  • Llanelli News August 1973-March 1979
  • Llanelli Star 1909-present
  • South Wales Press 1867-1934
  • Western Mail 1948-present

Maps and Plans

A large collection of maps and plans are held at Llanelli Library, including Ordnance Survey maps going back to the 1880s in different scales and the Llanelli Board of Health plans from 1853.

Carmarthen Library also has OS maps from various periods covering all areas of the county, in addition to Goad plans.