Library Policies

Security Statement

We ask all researchers who use the Historical Society of Pennsylvania's collections to help preserve and protect these materials so that they will be available for future generations. Please note that public areas in the library are monitored by electronic surveillance. Theft or defacement of collection materials is a criminal offense. Any researcher who engages in theft or defacement of collection materials will have his/her library privileges suspended and may be prosecuted.

General Guidelines in the Library

To provide the most effective environment for research and study, as well as to ensure the proper security, care and maintenance of our library holdings, the society has established the following guidelines for all users of the library:

  • The Society reserves the right to inspect all personal belongings used by researchers.
  • Smoking is prohibited.
  • Eating and drinking are permitted in the designated areas only.
  • Noise should be kept at a minimum.
  • No materials (including personal research materials) are to be taken into the restrooms.
  • Identification badges are to be worn at all times while in the building.
  • The society reserves the right to deny further access to any researcher who, in the judgment of the staff, fails to follow our published guidelines or is disruptive to the functioning of the library.
  • HSP's policies, developed to ensure a conducive research atmostphere, apply to children, students, and adults.
  • Children under kindergarten age are not permitted in the library (except to accompany their parents/guardians when viewing the exhibits).
  • Children under 9th grade must be with a supervising adult in the library and in the front lobby.
  • Each researcher will be charged admission to the library regardless of age. A child who is simply accompanying an adult researcher will not be charged admission, but an adult accompanying a child researcher will be charged admission.
  • Digital and film cameras (does not include moving image cameras) are permitted in the library with acceptance of the HSP camera policy. Please see the Front Desk staff for details.