Reference Services

The Linda Hall Library is open to the public free of charge during regular Library hours. There is no charge for getting a library card; credit cards are required for patrons who wish to borrow materials.

Click here to create your Library account.

The Main Reading Room and study rooms are open to all visitors, patrons, and researchers. The 2nd floor is also open for public browsing. Appointments are strongly encouraged, though not required. You can make an appointment using this form here

The History of Science Collection is also open to the public during Library hours. Please schedule an appointment at least 48 hours in advance by emailing collections@lindahall.org


Who Can Borrow

  • Individuals living within the Kansas City metropolitan area as defined below:
    • Missouri – Bates, Caldwell, Cass, Clay, Clinton, Jackson, Johnson, Lafayette, Platte, Ray
    • Kansas – Douglas, Franklin, Johnson, Leavenworth, Linn, Miami, Wyandotte
  • Established businesses within the KC metro area (see above counties). Contact Reference Services at 816.926.8701 or reference@lindahall.org for more information about authorized borrowing for businesses, or fill out our web application by clicking here.
  • High school students with credit card information provided by a parent. (Parent must be present at registration.)
  • Students, faculty, and staff of participating Courtesy Card institutions. Contact Reference Services at 816.926.8701 or reference@lindahall.org for more information about the Courtesy Card Program.

If you wish to borrow from the Linda Hall Library but do not meet the above criteria, please contact your local public, academic, or corporate library and request to borrow through interlibrary loan from Document Delivery Services. Click here for more information regarding terms and conditions of your Library account


Reference Librarians

Need assistance accessing collections materials? The Library’s expert team of reference librarians can:

  • Look up definitions, facts, formulas and other scientific or technical information.
  • Help with the use of the catalogdatabases, and indexes.
  • Confirm the Library’s holdings.
  • Provide bibliographic verification and assistance with citation identification.
  • Explain procedures and policies for circulation and use of materials.

Have a specific inquiry for our reference librarians? Use this form or connect with us via:

  • Phone: 800.662.1545 and choose option 2 for Reference or 816.926.8701 if you are in the Kansas City area. Phone service is available during the Library hours of 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Monday – Friday.
  • Fax: 816.926.8782
  • Email: reference@lindahall.org


Research Guides

Our Reference librarians have created these guides for more in-depth help with some of the frequently asked topics and more complex resources in the Library.


Patents and Trademarks

Linda Hall Library is one of over 80 libraries in the United States that participate in the Patent and Trademark Resource Center (PTRC) Program. The PTRC program is administered by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. Please see our Patents and Trademarks Research Guide for more information.


Material Which Does Not Circulate

  • Journals/periodicals/magazines
  • Material published before 1900
  • Microforms – microfiche, microfilm, microcard
  • Rare books and/or items from the History of Science Collection
  • Reference books
  • Technical reports
  • Other items listed in the Linda Hall Library circulation guidelines. (Please ask at the Reference Desk for a copy)
  • The Linda Hall Library reserves the right to deny circulation of any item determined to be fragile or difficult to replace.


Terms and Conditions

  • All patrons must provide a picture ID or LHL library card at the time of check-out.
  • Individual borrowers must provide credit card information on their application.
  • Library materials must be protected from damage from food and beverages.
  • Patrons are responsible for all uses of their library card.
  • Patrons must promptly report if a card is lost or stolen.
  • Patrons with overdue items will not be able to check out additional items.
  • Abuse of circulation privileges may result in the loss of borrowing privileges.

Have a question for one of our Reference librarians? Use this form or connect with us via:

  • Phone: 800.662.1545 and choose option 2 for Reference or 816.926.8701 if you are in the Kansas City area. Phone service is available during the Library hours of 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Monday – Friday.
  • Fax: 816.926.8782
  • Email: reference@lindahall.org

Reference librarians will:

  • Look up definitions, facts, formulas and other scientific or technical information.
  • Help with the use of the catalog, databases, and indexes.
  • Confirm the Library’s holdings.
  • Provide bibliographic verification and assistance with citation identification.
  • Explain procedures and policies for circulation and use of materials.


Research Guides

Our Reference librarians have created these guides for more in-depth help with some of the frequently asked topics and more complex resources in the Library.


Patents and Trademarks

Linda Hall Library is one of over 80 libraries in the United States that participate in the Patent and Trademark Resource Center (PTRC) Program. The PTRC program is administered by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. Please see our Patents and Trademarks Research Guide for more information.