The Research Library provides online access to many of the Museum's library and archival resources. For additional information regarding these, or any other resources, or to make an appointment, please email us at

Finding Aids

Finding aids are descriptive inventories for our archival records and manuscript collections. The Research Library's finding aids are available online through The Online Archive of California, a union database of finding aids for many California repositories (including the archives of university libraries, museums, and historical societies).

Digital Collections

Many of the Research Library's archival materials are available in digital form through the Internet Archive and the Biodiversity Heritage Library. Materials include the field note collections of Laurence M. Klauber, Frank Stephens, Laurence M. Huey, and Charles Russell Orcutt.

San Diego Natural History Museum Research Library collections on the Internet Archive

San Diego Natural History Museum Research Library collections at the Biodiversity Heritage Library


JSTOR Access

The San Diego Natural History Museum maintains a site license to access the online journal repository, JSTOR. You must connect to this link while in the Museum itself; there is no remote access.


The Research Library contains a rich collection of historical texts and reports of early explorations and expeditions, documenting fascinating discoveries in biology, geology, geography, and paleontology, dating back to the 1700s. Many of the texts are encyclopedic in nature, describing in lengthy detail the new plants, fishes, birds, insects, reptiles and other wildlife encountered, as well as the indigenous peoples. Beautiful maps, illustrations, charts and photographs enliven the pages.

The following annotated bibliographies of works in our library, with dates of publication from 1784 to as recent as 1948, are not meant to be exhaustive, but merely give an overview of the kind of resources available. For further titles on these topics, check our online catalog.

Search the Library Catalog

The Research Library's 56,000 volume collection includes both standard and uncommon reference works, journals, rare books, and maps. Our library resources can be searched through our online catalog.

View Catalog

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