Research Library | Natural History Museum of Los Angeles

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Library Contact Information

Open by Appointment Only:
   Monday-Friday 10am - 4pm

Phone: 213.763.3268
    Fax: 213.763.3592

Research Library Special Collections


The Research Library

The Research Library collection consists of materials in a variety of fields, including anthropology, ethnology, history, mineralogy, paleontology, and zoology. The collection focuses on Southern California history, geography, and industry with over 200,000 books, journals, maps, and over 30 Special Collections.

Search the Library's Online Catalog.

Historical Films from the Research Library collections

The Research Library has begun digitizing a collection of audiovisual items documenting the rich history of the Museum and the growth of Los Angeles in the mid-twentieth century. Many of these films offer behind-the-scenes footage never before available to the public. Thanks to the support of a grant from the California Audiovisual Preservation Project, these historic materials are now accessible through the Internet Archive. Highlights include the 1966 opening of the Museum’s acclaimed elephant exhibit, 1960s excavations at the La Brea Tar Pits, a 1954 documentary about the groundbreaking research conducted in the Museum’s labs, and the arrival of exotic animals to the regions’ zoos. New audiovisual items will be added periodically.

Explore this unique glimpse of Los Angeles history on the Internet Archive at
The NHMLAC Collection.

Research Library Volunteer Opportunities

The Research Library at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County is considered a specialized cultural institution library with subject collections in selected areas of natural history. Internships are considered part of the Museum’s volunteer program and therefore are unpaid opportunities. All interns are directly supervised by the Chief Librarian. While a science background is helpful, it is not required.

For more information about current Volunteer Opportunties in the library, visit the Library News page.