Special Weather Notice: During the winter months, inclement weather sometimes prompts the delay or closure of the Library. If you plan to visit during these periods, please dial the Library's weather line at (845) 486-7777 to determine the Library's status each day.
Special Hours: The Research Room will have a delayed opening of 11:00 on Friday, January 24, 2020.
About Our Archival Collections
The Franklin D. Roosevelt Library maintains over 17 million pages of documents, 150,000 audiovisual items, and 50,000 books. Among these materials are the personal papers of Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt, as well as those of various individuals and organizations associated with the Roosevelts.
Several thousand historic documents and photographs are available online through the FRANKLIN research database, and in special articles at Research the Roosevelts. However, this large number represents a small portion of our Library's overall holdings. For this reason we encourage you to make an in-person visit.
Use the Courtyard Entrance of the Historic Library Building
When you enter the Museum lobby, check in with the security guard stationed at the welcome counter. There you will receive a red research pass and be directed toward the Library's Research Room. Once there, the archivist on duty will assist you with a short registration process and provide further orientation.
The Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr. Research Room of the Franklin D. Roosevelt Library is open from
8:45 A.M. to 5:00 P.M. Monday through Friday, except on federal holidays. There is no fee to conduct research and no pre-application or pre-appointments are necessary. There are four set "pull" times per day when archival materials can be retrieved on your behalf.
These times are as follows:
- 9:15 A.M.
- 11:00 A.M.
- 2:00 P.M.
- 3:45 P.M.
We recommend arriving far enough ahead of a given pull time to both register and effectively identify the materials of interest to you. We will do one "courtesy pull" for new researchers upon arrival, after which we ask that these set pull times be respected. We do not pull materials in advance of your arrival.
Keep your photo ID handy when you enter the research room. An archivist will ask you to complete a Researcher Application in order to obtain a Library-issued researcher identification card. To save time, your Researcher Application can be printed off, filled out, and brought with you when you come for your in-person visit. Researcher cards cannot be issued in advance by mail because photo ID is required at the time of application.
Work with the archivist on duty to identify the materials you wish to use in your research, and then submit a request for retrieval of those materials at a designated pull time. Please see Research Services for more information about how the staff can help you prior to your visit.
All researchers must adhere to certain security measures so that the historical materials will be preserved for future generations.
Please note that the FDR Library operates on a clean research room policy. This means that all researcher belongings, including notebooks, folders, purses, briefcases, laptop cases, pens, etc., must remain in the designated area outside the research room. Lockers are available to secure personal items. Exceptions to this rule are laptops, digital cameras, and flatbed scanners, all of which are permitted in the research room. Notepaper and pencils will be provided by the archivst on duty. More information about our policies is available on the Research Services page.
Prepare for Your Visit
General Weather Notice: During the winter months, inclement weather sometimes prompts the delay or closure of the Library. If you plan to visit during these periods, please dial the Library's weather line at (845) 486-7777 to determine the Library's status each day.
As of Tuesday, May 8, 2018, the Library’s research room will no longer accept cash payments for self-service photocopy reproductions. We continue to accept checks and all major credit cards. The Archivist on duty will provide more detailed information about methods available for self-service reproduction. We encourage researchers to use personal cameras (flash disabled) to create digital images of historical materials served in this room. This method of reproduction is gentler on the documents, and free of charge.
An archivist is always available in the research room to assist you in finding the materials you need, but coming to the research room with a general idea of which collections you would like to look at will allow more time for conducting your research. Information about how an archivist can assist you with your research can be found at Research Services. We do not pull materials for researchers in advance, but we invite you to Contact the Archives for additional information about our holdings and resources.
Before you visit us at the FDR Library, there are several steps you can take to make your time here as productive as possible. The first is to familiarize yourself with the secondary sources related to your topic. The more you know about your topic and the people and events involved, the more efficiently you will be able to perform primary source research.
Next, take advantage of our online Finding Aids database. This tool can help you determine which materials in our collections may be helpful and where those papers are located. Also, a complete list of collections is available online where many finding aids can be downloaded in PDF format.
The Roosevelt Institute supports a program of small grants-in-aid, not to exceed $2,500, in support of research on the "Roosevelt years" or clearly related subjects.
Please see Map & Directions for information about location and transportation. We also recommend exploring the online resources available through the Dutchess County Tourism website to find places to stay, restaurants and other attractions in the area.
For more information about doing research at the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library, please consult the FAQs — Research at the FDRL. For general information about visiting FDR Library & Museum, call 1 (800) FDR-VISIT.