How do I request and access items from the Harvard Archives?

Requests for material held by the Harvard University Archives cannot be made in HOLLIS.

Once you've identified material of interest in HOLLIS, contact the University Archives reference staff directly at or via Ask an Archivist call 617-495-2461 to arrange a visit to our reading room. Reading room hours are 10:30am-4:30pm weekdays.

Please note that many items are stored off site and require at least 24 hours notice for retrieval.

Service Alert:
  • Ask a Librarian, including chat and email, will be suspended from Saturday, May 26 through Monday May 28, in observance of Memorial Day. Questions received during this period will be answered beginning Tuesday, May 28, 2023.
  • If you're experiencing an ongoing technical issue when you attempt to access library materials with your HarvardKey during these times, please report it to Library Technology Services.


Monday - Thursday 9am-9pm
Friday & Saturday: 9am-5pm
Sunday: 12-7pm

Chat is intended for brief inquiries from the Harvard community.


Talk to a librarian for advice on defining your topic, developing your research strategy, and locating and using sources. Make an appointment now.

These services are intended primarily for Harvard University faculty, staff and students. If you are not affiliated with Harvard, please use these services only to request information about the Library and its collections.