State Historical Library

State Historical Library

The Historical Library and Special Collections facilitate access to primary and secondary resources related to the history of Iowa.  We serve a wide range of visitors including authors, educators, students, news media, curators, archaeologists, preservationists, historians and genealogists. Patrons can access most items by visiting one of the reading rooms in Des Moines or Iowa City, can identify our holdings through our online collections catalog or by requesting assistance from staff.

Public Reference Services

E-mail reference inquiries for the State Historical Library Des Moines office should be directed to  and inquiries for the Iowa City office should be directed to


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