Guide to
The Library and Archives
of the
Hoover Institution On War, Revolution and Peace;
Stanford University

copyright, The Hoover Institution on War, Revolution and Peace

The Library and Archives of the Hoover Institution document the political, social, and economic changes that have shaped our world in the twentieth century. The collections are open to the public without fee. Hoover Institution scholars, Stanford University faculty, staff, and students, as well as visiting researchers, are invited to use these world-renowned research collections. Members of the staff are ready to assist readers in locating relevant materials.

The Hoover Institution's collections are heavily used by scholars writing on the Russian revolutions, World Wars I and II, and other events of this century, as well as on the forces that will eventually mold the 21st century. The Library and Archives contain a wealth of information on such topics as the development of democratic institutions, international affairs, peace negotiations and movements, political ideologies (especially communism, nazism, fascism, nationalism, and colonialism), political upheaval .and revolutions, changes in the status of women, state-sponsored propaganda, underground resistance movements, governments-in-exile, military history, and wartime dislocation and relief.

The Library contains 1.6 million volumes, 58,000 reels of microfilm, and 25,000 serial titles, with subscriptions to 3,860 current newspapers and journals. The Archives holds over 40 million documents in 4,000 archival and special collections. Library holdings acquired since 1977 and all archival collections are entered in the Research Libraries Information Network (RLIN). For earlier acquisitions one may consult the published card catalogs: The Library Catalogs of the Hoover Institution on War, Revolution and Peace, 105 volumes, (Boston: G.K. Hall, 1969-1977).

Individual brochures are available that describe holdings for each area collection: Africa, Central and Western Europe, East Asia, Latin and North America, the Middle East, and Russia (Soviet Union) and East Europe.

The Library and Archives consist of three parts:

1) The Central Collection of publications in Western, Slavic, African, and Middle Eastern languages, is located in the Hoover Tower, with the Main Reading Room on the first floor and the Current Periodical and Newspaper Reading Room on the lower level.

Open: Monday - Friday, 8 am - 5 pm
Telephone: (415) 723-2058

2) The East Asian Collection, with materials in Chinese and Japanese, is located in the Lou Henry Hoover building, adjacent to the Hoover. Tower.

Open: Monday - Friday, 8 am - 5 pm
Telephone: (415) 725-3435

3) The Archives, which contains manuscript and archival collections, photographs, and ephemera, is located on the Courtyard Level of the Herbert Hoover Memorial Building.

Open: Monday - Friday, 8:15 am - 4:45 pm Telephone: (415) 723-3563
Holiday and intersession schedules may vary.

The staff in these three departments can supply complete information about procedures for using the collections. Visiting researchers are asked to register at one of the three locations by filling out a registration form, presenting identification, and agreeing to the rules for safe use of the materials.
Borrowing privileges are extended to Hoover Institution scholars, Stanford faculty, students, and staff, and cooperative card holders from the University of California at Berkeley. (Excepted are rare books and all archival materials, which do not circulate.) Circulating books may be borrowed for the academic year by Hoover Institution scholars and Stanford faculty and staff, for one quarter by doctoral candidates, and for one month by graduate and undergraduate students. Readers may request materials by completing request cards with information from the catalogs and leaving the cards at the appropriate loan desk. If the requested book is out on loan, it may be recalled provided the current borrower has held it for at least two weeks. Readers making intensive use of the collections may apply to the reference staff for carrels.

The Library offers an interlibrary loan service for Hoover Institution scholars and staff who need books or photocopies of journal articles not available on the Stanford campus. The Library honors interlibrary loan requests from visiting researchers through their home libraries. Rare or fragile items cannot be lent. Whenever possible, in accordance with U.S. copyright law, photocopies or microfilm copies are made available for purchase.

Self-service photocopy machines are located on the lower level of the Tower, behind the loan desk in the East Asian Collection, and in the Archives Reading Room. Non-circulating items may be copied only with permission.

The Hoover Institution would appreciate receiving copies of books and articles based upon materials in its custody. Researchers are advised to clarify the copyright status of all materials they might wish to publish.


The collection in the Hoover Tower contains primarily publications written in Western, Slavic, African, and Middle Eastern languages. Card catalogs are located in two rooms to the left and right of the Tower's inner lobby. Author, title, and subject cards are interfiled alphabetically. The main catalog is supplemented by special catalogs for Serials, Newspapers, Government Documents and Society Publications, and Middle Eastern Languages. Items acquired since 1977 and some earlier ones are entered in Socrates, Stanford University's online catalog, and in the Research Libraries Information Network (RLIN). The book stacks of the Central Collection are closed; books are retrieved from the stacks by the staff every half-hour from 9 am to 4 pm. Completed request cards may be left at the loan desk.

The Main Reading Room adjacent to the loan desk contains a reference collection of basic works, a display of recent acquisitions, and publications of the Hoover Institution Press. The Current Periodical and Newspaper Reading Room is located in Room 15 on the lower level of the Tower.


The East Asian Collection - the only Asian language library on the Stanford campus - is located in the Lou Henry Hoover Building and contains Chinese- and Japanese language publications in thesocial sciences and humanities for all historical periods. Materials about Asia published in Western languages are located in the Central Collection in the Hoover Tower and in the Stanford University Libraries.

Hoover Institution scholars, Stanford faculty and Asian studies students may borrow circulating books and are eligible for access to the book stacks. Others affiliated with Stanford and Asian studies scholars from other institutions may be granted stack access by special permission.
The East Asian catalog is printed in both Asian and Roman characters and arranged in alphabetical order by romanization with authors, titles and subject headings in one sequence. The separate Chinese and Japanese catalogs as well as serials and newspaper record files are located in the lobby area. Items acquired since 1984 and some earlier ones are available only by consulting Socrates, the Stanford online catalog, and RLIN.

Reference collections, selected current periodicals, and recent acquisitions are displayed in the Reading Room adjacent to the loan desk.


The holdings of the Hoover Institution Archives may be consulted only in the Archives Reading Room on the Courtyard Level of the Herbert Hoover Memorial Building. Brief descriptions of the collections can be found in the card catalog of the Archives Reading Room, in the published guide (Guide to the Hoover Institution Archives compiled by Charles G. Palm and Dale Reed, Stanford University, Hoover Institution Press 1980), and on Socrates and RLIN. Detailed finding aids for many collections are available in the Reading Room, and copies of these may be purchased. A member of the reference staff is always available to answer questions, and requests for assistance received by telephone and by mail are also accommodated. The Archives maintains a list of research assistants who can be hired to undertake research projects for those unable to visit the Archives in person.

All researchers must register to use the Archives. They must agree to the special procedures designed to safeguard these unique documents. Lockers are provided for the temporary storage of personal property (including personal papers, purses, and briefcases) which is not permitted in the Reading Room. Locker keys must be returned at the end of the day. Only pencils, ballpoint pens, typewriters, personal computers, and reference books may be taken into the Archives Reading Room. Notepaper is provided free of charge and must be inspected before it can be removed from the room. Readers are required to exercise the greatest possible care to prevent damage to the archival materials.

Archival holdings are requested using the cards available at the reference desk. The materials are brought from the stacks to the Reading Room at 9 am, 11 am, 2 pm, and 3 pm. A limited number of photocopies may be made, in accordance with U.S. copyright law and the Archives' photoduplication policy. A self-service copy machine is available.

Inquiries about the use of the collections may be sent to the Head of Readers' Services, Hoover Institution Library, to the East Asian Collection, or to the Archivist, Hoover Institution Archives, Stanford University, Stanford, California 94305-6010.

Created: Saturday, August 08, 1998, 08:52 Last Updated: Saturday, August 08, 1998, 08:52