Rare Book Collection

The Rare Book Department is one of the largest public library special collections in the United States. Since 1949, our mission has been to collect and preserve cultural heritage materials and make them accessible to the public.

Collection Themes

Many, but certainly not all, of the items in the Rare Book Collection are books. We also have antiques, artifacts, artwork, letters, photographs, and items that don't fit neatly into any object category.

Items in our catalog

Over 40,000 items from our Rare Book collection are searchable in the Free Library's Catalog. Browse the catalog »