Genealogy Research


Genealogy Club

The Genealogy Club meets every first Saturday at 10:30 AM.

The James Bailey Museum
Located within the Portland Public Library, the Bailey Museum is a rich source of Tennessee history and genealogical research. Set as a Civil War parlor, the museum is beautifully decorated with antique furniture and artifacts from early Tennessee life.

 Highlights of the Collection

  • James Bailey Tennessee History Collection
  • Tandy Civil War Collection
  • James Harold Haynes Collection
  • Allen Haynes Historical Photo Collection
  • Sumner County Newspapers 1800’s – 1950
  • Portland Newspapers 1957 – Present
  • Local and Sumner County Cemetery Books
  • Local and Sumner County Obituaries
  • Death Records 1908 – 1912 and 1914 - 1954
  • Sumner County Census Books
  • Land Transfers
  • Local Family Genealogy Records

The museum is open to the public and Ms. Paula Shannon is on staff to assist with research in person, by telephone, by mail, and by e-mail.

Computers are available for genealogy research.

Paula's Hours

  • Tuesday 10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
  • Wednesday 10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
  • Thursday 10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
  • Friday 10:30 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.

Contact Information
Portland Public Library
Attention: Paula Shannon
301 Portland Boulevard
Portland, TN  37148
Telephone: 615-325-2279
Fax: 615-325-7061


The Samuel C. Collins Room
Located within the James Bailey Museum is the Samuel C. Collins Room. A member of the first graduating class of Sumner County High School in 1916, Samuel Collins went on to receive a B.S. and a M.S. degree from the University of Tennessee in Agriculture, and a  Ph.D. from the University of North Carolina in Physical Chemistry. He began his teaching career in 1915 in Sumner County and retired from the prestigious Massachusetts Institute of Technology from 1930-1964.

Research and Inventions of Samuel Collins
• 1942-44 Helped develop low-pressure, light weight oxygen generators for use in American Bombers.
• 1946 Developed the Collins Helium Liquefier.
• 1949 Established the Cryogenics Laboratory at MIT.
• 1961 Co-Developer   with Dr. Ernest Barsamian of Boston City Hospital of a portable heart lung machine.
• 1971 Developed a new hydrofolic ship propulsion system for superconducting ship engines.

When you visit the Samuel C. Collins Room you will see memorabilia and will discover more interesting information about his life, research, and the honors and awards bestowed upon him. The Collins room is maintained by the Collins family
and is open during regular library hours.


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