The California collection contains 10,000 books, pamphlets, and periodicals documenting the state's history, culture, politics, and natural history. Other materials include travel guides, diaries, personal narratives, legal cases, oral histories, postcards, ephemera, and archival and manuscript materials. The collection houses significant primary resources dating from the mid-18th century to the present and covers historical topics such as exploration, early settlement, the environment, and the gold rush. The emphasis is on Los Angeles County and the greater Southern California region.

Orange County is collected in great depth, as described separately on this site.


Spotlight on:


Eighteenth century map of California.

Watercolor Celebrating Arrival at the West Coast.

Program from La Fiesta de Los Angeles.