Central Library : Special Collections

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Special Collections at the Central Library

Hugh and Jane Ferguson Seattle Room

The Hugh and Jane Ferguson Seattle Room is located on Level 10.


Library staff is available to help with your research, answer questions, and locate materials. The Northwest Index, a card catalog of local newspapers, also is located in the Seattle Room. Appointments will be available on a case-by-case basis. For help, please use Ask a Librarian.


Seattle Room Hours

Monday - Thursday: 11 a.m. - 6 p.m.

Friday: Closed

Saturday - Sunday: 1 p.m. - 5 p.m.


See Special Collections for a list of Library collections available online and at other Library locations.


Special Collections

  • The Aviation History Collection focuses on the early days of aviation, especially relating to the design, manufacturing and marketing of airplanes from 1930 to 1950. The collection includes publications from the Boeing, Curtiss and Douglas companies and early materials in German and French. The collection does not include current technical materials.

    The Aviation History Collection is located in The Maffei Family Aviation Room on Level 7 and is available upon request.


  • The Genealogy Collection houses more than 40,000 items dealing primarily with records and families of North America - including those from the original 13 colonies, the Old Northwest Territory and from states referred to as "Gateways to the West."

    The Genealogy Reference Desk and Collection is located on Level 9. Genealogy librarians are available to help with your research, answer questions, and locate materials.

    Genealogy Hours
    Tuesday - Saturday: 11 a.m. - noon and 1 p.m - 3 p.m.
    Sunday: 1 p.m. - 3 p.m.
    You may schedule a 30-minute appointments with a Genealogy Librarian in person at the Level 9 History, Travel & Maps desk or via Ask-a Librarian.
    Patrons must come to the library for the appointment; we do not provide phone appointments. Appointments are available Tuesday - Friday: 3 p.m. and 4 p.m.
  • The Seattle Collection contains items about Seattle's history and includes published materials, Seattle city documents, newspaper clippings, maps and atlases, high school yearbooks, oral histories and more than 30,000 photographs, including photos of historic Seattle, Native Americans, streets, businesses and portraits. The collection also features paintings, drawings, metalwork, sculpture, prints and photographs, and includes works by notable local artists such as Paul Horiuchi, George Tsutakawa and Frank Okada.

    The Albert Balch Autograph Collection, part of the Seattle Collection, features original letters, photographs and signed copies of published works. It includes signatures by Helen Keller, Babe Ruth and T. S. Elliot.

    The Seattle Collection is located in the Hugh and Jane Ferguson Seattle Room on Level 10.


Safe Place

Central Library
1000 Fourth Ave.
Seattle, WA 98104



10 am - 8 pm


10 am - 8 pm


10 am - 8 pm


10 am - 8 pm


10 am - 6 pm


10 am - 6 pm


Noon - 6 pm

Regional Manager:
Karen Spiel

Book Drop Hours


  • Monday - Friday
    6 am - 10 pm
  • Saturday - Sunday
    9:30 am - 6 pm

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