The archives research collections are available for public use through a combined library and archives reading room on the 2nd floor of State Historical Building in Des Moines. The collections are available for use only in the reading room—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 reading room 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 maintains a list of professional researchers who provide services for a fee to those unable to come in person to the reading room.
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.