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PLAN YOUR VISIT

Local History/Special Collections houses many resources for those interested in Alexandria and Virginia history and genealogy and the Civil War.   

Below is information to help you plan your visit. 

  • The Guides and Indexes give information about the various resources available. 
  • Please review the information about the collection, the use of the reading room, and the fees for duplication services.
  • Please review the hours of operation as they differ from the Barrett Branch Library.

If you have any questions, please contact Local History & Special Collections staff at 703-746-1706.

 

GUIDES AND INDEXES

 

ALEXANDRIA LIBRARY COMPANY BIBLIOGRAPHY
A bibliography is available of over 3000 titles that were a part of the original collection comprising the Alexandria Library under the Alexandria Library Company. 

 

The Alexandria Library, Local History/Special Collections has more than 50,000 photographs in its collections ranging from 19th century daguerrotypes to images made by professional photographers still in practice.

 

Local History/Special Collections includes more than 250 archive and manuscript collections of Alexandria and material relating to Northern Virginia.  The collections vary from account books and diaries to sheet music to audiocassettes of oral histories, advertising, miscellaneous city and other documents, correspondence and material related to the historic structures in Alexandria, etc. 

 

This collection is used to study the history of structures in Alexandria.Building and Repair Permits were first issued in the City of Alexandria, ca. 1891 and are useful to today's homeowner or researcher who is preparing a history of the property.

 

Building and Repair Permits were first issued in the City of Alexandria, ca. 1891 and are useful to today's homeowner or researcher who is preparing a history of the property. These nearly 3400 permits cover the period ca. 1896-1928. There are a very few permits in the collection prior to 1896. The index is organized alphabetically by street name and then numerically by house number. 

 

Includes pictures from the following sources: Frank Leslie's Illustrated Newspaper, Harper's Weekly, 1860-1890, Illustrated London News, New York Illustrated News, Pictorial Battles of the Civil War, Pictorial Battles of the War of 1861, Pictorial War Record.

 

A list of indexes covering topics such as obituaries, censuses, military records, yearbooks, and naturalization petitions.

 

This resource guide is intended to present an overview of materials available for the study of African-American history in the Alexandria Library Local History/Special Collections division. The guide focuses on recent publications, acquisitions and Internet resources, in addition to providing listings for older resources which remain important in the field.

 

An introductory guide to books and journal articles on the development of transportation in Virginia.

 

A guide to books, manuscript collections, photograph collections, websites and other materials on women's history.

 

This collection includes more than 500 historic maps that focus on Alexandria and regional history. These maps date from the early 17th century and are as current as today. The maps collection is available for use only in the Library.

 

In addition to the census records and the Alexandria Gazette, the collection contains: microfilm of other local newspapers; deed books, will books and other local land records; maps of the local area; copies of several manuscript collections.

  

SERIALS AND NEWSPAPERS
Our history and genealogy periodical collection and our historical newspapers on microfilm.

 

Digital images of Old Town property tax documents from the 1960s.

 

Includes clippings from newspapers and journals, brochures, and unpublished reports.

 

 

INFORMATION

 

THE COLLECTION
The books, microfilm, manuscripts, photographs and other items in the Local History/Special Collections Branch constitute a research collection; none of the materials may be checked out of the library.

 

PERSONAL ITEMS
As many of the materials in the collection are fragile and/or valuable, patrons are asked to leave personal belongings such as bags and jackets in a locker and exercise care when handling materials.

 

FOOD & DRINK
Food and drink are not permitted in Local History/Special Collections and cell phones ringers should be turned off or set to vibrate.

 

COPIER
A self-service, coin-operated copier and microfilm reader/printers are available. Researchers may use a flash drive to scan microfilm images for free. Studio-quality reproductions or digital scans of photographs are also available (see below).

 

 

PHOTO DUPLICATION FEES

 

$20.00 per scan at 300 dpi, for one time use only.

$30.00 per scan for images higher than 300 dpi, for one time use only

$50.00 Expedited Service (less than 10 business days) – per image

Please make checks payable to: Alexandria Library

 

  • Preferred method of delivery is through DropBox (Free). If your organization restricts file transfers, please make arrangements with your IT department to provide temporary access, as we will not mail image files via CD, DVD, or USB.
  • Staff will only do a minimum of touch-up (deskew, cropping, or color correction) to images or approximately 30 minutes’ worth of touch-up. Extensive resizing, color correction, etc. is the responsibility of the requestor.
  • Normal turnaround time is approximately 10 business days.

 

Hours & Location
We're closed Monday May 27
Mon, May 20 1:00PM to 9:00PM
Tue, May 21 2:00PM to 9:00PM
Wed, May 22 10:00AM to 7:00PM
Thu, May 23 Closed
Fri, May 24 10:00AM to 6:00PM
Sat, May 25 10:00AM to 5:00PM
Sun, May 26 Closed

Address
717 Queen Street
Alexandria
VA 22314
Tel: 703.746.1706
Fax: 703.746.1720
About the branch

Parking: No library parking lot.  Street parking is available.  A paid parking lot is available on the 100 block of North Alfred Street.

Public Transit:

  • Metrorail: Yellow and Blue lines at Braddock Road (1 mile) and King Street Stations (1.1 miles). 
  • Metrobus: 10A, 10B, 10E, 11Y
  • DASH Bus: AT2/AT5/AT8
  • King Street Trolley:  King & Columbus