Skip to main content

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. Contact the Library with your questions.

Libraries in Los Angeles County are not yet authorized to open for in-person services. We do not have a date for reopening to researchers but, when the Library does reopen, it will be at greatly reduced capacity, owing to social distancing and other COVID-19 protocols. We look forward to sharing further information about our reopening as we are able.

When we reopen, access to the Library’s Ahmanson reading room will be by appointment. Although we are still accepting applications for access, we are unable to schedule or guarantee future appointments at this time. Should you submit an application for access, a member of the Reader Services staff will be in contact with you. All applicants must be engaged in research in an area well-supported by the Library’s collections.

In addition to planning for adjustments to our in-person services, we are currently improving and expanding our online content systems and virtual reference resources. We encourage you to contact Reference with your questions and to visit our Library at Home research guide for more information.

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.

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. 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 the library 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

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. They may not be stored in the Library overnight or for extended periods of time.
  • The Huntington's collection is non-circulating; all materials must be used within the library.
  • The following must be observed while using the Ahmanson Reading Room:
    • Readers are permitted to have up to five rare items requests on hold at a time. Readers may consult one manuscript item or a maximum of three printed books at a time.
    • Electronic devices must be set to silent. Headphones are permitted, but must be kept at low volume as to not to disturb other readers.
    • Digital photography is allowed as long as cameras are set to silent and no flash.
  • The following items are not permitted in the library's reading room:
    • Loose-leaf paper or notebooks. Please use the pink paper provided by the reading room staff.
    • 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.
    • Flatbed scanners and copystands. If you need high-quality images of rare materials, please make a request for a reproduction.