Howard County Historical Society Collections Database

Old Photos Howard County, Maryland

The Howard County Historical Society owns over 4,000 photographs and slides related to the history of Howard County, Maryland. We are working to make as many of these available as possible, updating this database weekly. We hope to make available images of our other collections in the future.

Please note that the contents of this site may not be reproduced in any form without the consent of the Howard County Historical Society.

Reprints of these photographs as well as high resolution scans are available for a small fee. If you see an image you like, you can contact us by clicking "Order Now".

We currently offer online search of our collections of Marriage Liscenses, Yearbooks, Manumissions, Indentures, and Bills of Sale through our website.

For more information about the Photographic Collections, please contact

For instructions on how to search the database, please click here.

Search the Collections Database

Tips for Searching

Keyword Search

The Keyword Search button allows you to perform a general search across multiple fields for any catalog records online. Keyword searches use OR as the default connector between words (e.g. a search for Hanley Ranch will return records associated with Hanley OR Ranch). If you want to find records where both keywords are found, type in AND between the two words. To search for a specific phrase, be sure to put the phrase within quotes (e.g. "Rocky Pine Ranch"). You can also use the asterisk (*) as a wildcard (e.g. a search for histor* would come up with records containing history, histories, historical, etc.). Searches are not case sensitive.

Advanced Search

The Advanced Search button can help you be more specific with your search. You can search for a word or phrase within a particular search category or use multiple categories to further narrow down your search results. For example, searching White in the People field will bring up any records associated with a member of the White family, without having to sift through black & white photographs. You can also search People and Creator records through Advanced Search. Phrase searching with quotes and use of wildcards (*) are available in Advanced Search.

Random Images

The Random Images button is a great way to just browse the collection. Each Random Images page displays a random assortment of images from the records online. If something piques your interest, click the thumbnail to view a larger version of the image.

Catalog Searches (Archives / Photos / Libraries / Objects)

The catalog buttons can also help narrow down your search, by only searching with a selected catalog. If you only want to search for Photos, click the Photos button and type in your keyword(s) or phrase. You can also browse records within that catalog without performing a search. Phrase searching, wildcards (*) as well as AND/OR statements are available when performing catalog searches.