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  • Writer's pictureRicki King

State Historical Research libraries reopen today!

After more than a year, the State Historical Society of Iowa Library and Archives Research Centers reopen today. Currently, you can only visit the Library and Archives Research Centers in Iowa City or Des Moines by appointment only on Thursday or Friday. Appointments are available on a first-come basis. It is a start and one I have been looking forward to since it closed due to Covid.

You must schedule an appointment online to visit Thursday or Friday from 9 am-11:30 am or 1:30 pm to 4 pm. Between 11:30 am and 1:30 pm, the Library and Archives Research Centers will close to receive additional cleaning. The Research Centers will be following social distancing and limiting the number of people.

The appointment request form is straightforward to fill out. You complete your contact information and choose your preferred contact method. Choose the date of your visit, currently showing dates to September 3rd. Let's hope the staff realizes it is ok to fully reopen without an appointment before September. Either way, two days a week is better than none.

After you have requested your visit date and time, Research Center staff must confirm either by phone or email. You can only schedule one day and time, either a morning or afternoon, from the dropdown menu. I put in the comments I would also like an afternoon time the same day. There is a dropdown to see if you will be using equipment and for how long. My thoughts are if you are not using equipment, it may allow more people to visit at one time. I do not need equipment but did request some files. If you are unsure, there is a spot to ask Research Center staff questions.

I submitted my appointment request after hours and immediately received a confirmation email my request was received. Remember, I do not have a confirmed appointment yet. I am waiting on the Research Center staff to contact me to confirm my appointment.

If you do what I did and do not fill in the Country in the address field, your request will come back with an error message. Or if you do not complete any of the required fields. The information you have already filled in does remain. Go to where the section is in red and fix your error.

I am writing this before the Library and Archives Research Center has opened, so I have not yet received my confirmation from the library staff.

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