Frequently Asked QuestionsAnswers to all of the things you've been wanting to know
What can I expect when I visit?
The Grand Rapids History Center has the same hours as the Main Library. You do not need a library card to use our collections. Since we offer reference material, the books on our floor do not circulate. Please note that while covered beverages are allowed on other floors of the library, no food or beverage (including water) is permitted on the 4th floor.
How do I request research assistance?
Contact us with details of your research request. Due to the time and staff resources involved in researching answers to local history, genealogy, and furniture questions, some fees apply to certain types of requests. We encourage researchers to come to our library to be assisted for free.
Family history queries can also be submitted to the Western Michigan Genealogical Society research committee.
How can I donate?
We are always looking for items to tell the story of our community, from the recent past to the 1800s. If you have unique books, papers, letters, scrapbooks or photographs you think would contribute to this cause, please contact us.
If you are interested in making a monetary donation, please contact the Grand Rapids Public Library Foundation.
Do you have yearbooks?
Yes – we collect high school yearbooks for the Grand Rapids area, as well as Grand Rapids Community College yearbooks. You can view a full listing here.
Do you have city directories?
Yes – we have city directories for Grand Rapids and Kent County, ranging from 1856 to the present. We also have city directories for surrounding areas such as Battle Creek, Grand Haven, Hastings, Holland-Zeeland, Kalamazoo, and Muskegon. You can search our catalog for a complete listing.