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About the Library-Archives

The Library–Archives supports the mission of the Wisconsin Historical Society by acquiring, preserving, and providing access to the largest collection of published and unpublished material documenting the history of North America outside of the Library of Congress.

The Archives provides access to collections of unpublished materials about the history of Wisconsin and a wide array of topics related to North American history. These collections include letters, diaries, organization records, state and local government records, photographs, films, oral histories and many other kinds of unique materials documenting American history. The Historical Society's extensive map collection also is available through the Archives. In addition to being a major manuscript repository, the Historical Society is the Wisconsin State Archives housing original state and local government records. The Archives provides centralized management for a unique regional network of Area Research Centers based on most of the campuses of the University of Wisconsin System. Collections may be borrowed for use throughout the Network.

The Library provides access to published materials (books, periodicals, and government publications) about virtually all aspects of North American history. In addition to the history of Wisconsin and North America in general, the Library has particularly strong genealogy, labor union, North American exploration, African American and Native American holdings. The Library serves as the North American history library of the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and houses a premier collection of Wisconsin, Federal and Canadian government publications. Many items may be borrowed for personal use by visiting the Library, using the Universal Borrower function within the Voyager catalog on University of Wisconsin campuses, or by requesting an interlibrary loan through your local library. Material necessary for genealogical research, rare items, and materials under 50 pages do not circulate.

View the University of Wisconsin page: About the Wisconsin Historical Society Library and Archives

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