Archives > Holdings

Access to Collections

Reference and Retrieval

The archives, photograph, and manuscript collections are closed Saturdays, unless arrangements are made in advance.  Arrangements can be made to use archival material on Saturdays by requesting the needed material from an archives staff member prior to noon on the preceding Friday.

The archives research collections are available for public use at the Research Center on the 2nd floor of State Historical Building in Des Moines. The collections are available for use only at the center—they cannot be checked out for use elsewhere. Some duplicated materials are available on interlibrary loan to cooperating libraries. There is also information on microfilm available for interlibrary loan and purchase.

Archives reference staff provide assistance to researchers in the Research Center by directing them to pertinent collection guides, recommending sources of information, retrieving the requested materials and filling reproduction orders. Staff are not able to conduct detailed research for patrons. The State Historical Society of Iowa maintains a list of professional researchers who provide services for a fee to those unable to come in person to the center.

The State Historical Society of Iowa provides access to collections at no cost to patrons. Fees are charged for duplication and special services associated with use of the collections.

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