Use the smaller-sized text Use the larger-sized text Use the very large text

Library Acquisitions

The Acquisitions Section of the Wisconsin Historical Society Library is responsible for acquiring published materials on any topic and in any subject area that are historical in treatment and focused on North America, north of the Rio Grande. Other University of Wisconsin-Madison campus libraries collect additional works related to Wisconsin and North American history, especially when those publications are in the physical or life sciences, are not primarily historical in approach, or are international or interdisciplinary in scope.

The Library collects each of the subject areas listed below at a research level. That is, it attempts to document them in sufficient depth to support PhD-level research or its equivalent by acquiring published primary sources, specialized monographs, dissertations, scholarly and grass-roots journals, and a wide selection of in-depth reference tools. Other aspects of North American history are collected only in enough depth to support undergraduate or serious recreational use

Subjects Collected at Research Level in the Wisconsin Historical Society Library

  • Wisconsin history, including all aspects of political, economic, and social history.
  • Religious organizations in America (not limited to Christian denominations)
  • Genealogies and family histories
  • Biographies of people whose public activities fall within the subject areas named here
  • Archaeology and pre-history
  • History of ethnic groups (including, but not limited to, American Indian and African American history)
  • Discovery and exploration
  • Immigration, emigration, and colonization
  • Military, diplomatic, and political history
  • Local history of all states and regions
  • Canadian national and local history
  • Anthropology, folklore, leisure, and recreational activities
  • Economic history of all states and regions
  • Agricultural history
  • Communications, transportation, business, and finance history
  • Social history: social problems, social reform movements, benevolent organizations
  • Labor history
  • Women's history
  • Political radicalism, both right- and left-wing
  • Constitutional history, government, and public administration
  • Architecture, historic preservation, and the decorative arts
  • Journalism
  • History of technology and manufactures
  • Bibliographies and reference works

The Wisconsin Historical Society Library is the official depository for all State of Wisconsin publications and, with the University of Wisconsin-Madison, is a regional depository for United States government publications. It is also a selective depository for Canadian national and provincial documents and holds official state publications from many states outside Wisconsin. Particular subject area strengths are labor, foreign relations, census information, legislative branch activities, and civil rights.

For More Information, Contact:

Susan Dorst
Wisconsin Historical Society Library
816 State Street
Madison WI 53706
(608) 264-6530


  • Questions about this page? Email us
  • Email this page to a friend
Highlights Related Resouces
select text size Use the smaller-sized textUse the larger-sized textUse the very large text