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Researching at the Huntington Library

Information on using the Huntington Library.

Register to Become a Reader

The Huntington welcomes inquiries about its collections and requests for reproductions from everyone, including members of the public and off-site researchers. Questions may be submitted via the online form or by emailing reference@huntington.org.

The Library's reading rooms and materials are only available to registered readers.

To apply for reading privileges, determine whether you qualify as faculty, Ph.D. candidate or independent researcher. More information on these applicant categories can be found on our website.

Applications are reviewed as quickly as possible, but may take three weeks to process. 

If your application falls outside these qualifications, or you are unable to visit the library, we encourage you to reach out to us at reference@huntington.org for information on provisional access and research alternatives.

2) Submit your application online: 
Create an online account through our online request system, Aeon. Applications typically take 1–3 weeks to process depending on when letters of reference are received. 

3) Once you are approved: 
You will receive an email to set up an appointment to complete the registration process in-person at the Library, where library staff will issue you a library card and give you a quick orientation. Registrations are required and must be booked in advance. The appointment calendar fills up quickly, particularly during the summer, so we recommend booking as soon as your travel/lodging plans are set. To cancel or reschedule, simply use the link in the confirmation email for the initial appointment.

Questions? Email us at reference@huntington.org or reach us by phone (626-405-2191)

Weekly Library Orientation tours for new readers every Monday at 3 p.m. and Wednesday at 3 p.m. in the Reader Services Office.‚Äč

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Visiting the Library

Because of the special nature of our collections, the Library observes the following policies:

  • We strongly encourage readers to bring a minimum of personal belongings into the Library. Personal belongings may not be stored in the Library overnight or for extended periods of time.
  • The following items are not permitted in the Library: 
    • Bags, purses, laptop/tablet sleeves.
    • Pens, correction fluid, highlighters, post-its, staplers, paper clips, scissors, glue.
    • Food items.
    • Liquids, including bottled water (water coolers are available in the Library).
  • The Huntington's collection is non-circulating; all materials must be used within the library. 
  • Electronic devices and cameras must be on silent while in the Ahmanson Reading Room.
  • The following must be observed while using the Ahmanson Reading Room:
    • In addition to the items above, loose-leaf paper or notebooks are not permitted (please use paper provided by Ahmanson Reading Room staff).
    • Readers can have up to five rare item requests on hold at a time. Readers may consult one manuscript item or a maximum of three printed books at a time.
    • Digital photography is allowed as long as cameras are set to silent. Personal flatbed scanners and copystands are not permitted in the Ahmanson Reading Room. If you need high-quality images of rare materials, please make a request for a reproduction.