Reading Room

Photo of the Hoover Library & Archives Reading Room with tables, chairs physically distanced, and book shelves

The Hoover Institution Library & Archives supports a vibrant community of scholars interested in the meaning and role of history and is open to anyone. The collections, however, contain much that is rare, fragile, or covered under copyright, therefore the major part of Hoover Institution’s research resources are only accessible within the reading room at Stanford University. (Access to our digital content is also available at our satellite reading room in the Washington DC office.) Before planning a research visit, please review the information below along with our frequently asked questions. If you still have questions, contact us to ensure the best research experience.

Planning your Research Visit

Researchers must select materials and reserve a seat in the reading room 7 calendar days in advance. Please read our FAQs and current reopening guidelines for more information. If you are a new researcher, there are 4 key steps to complete prior to visiting the reading room:

1 Register for access with Aeon
2 Research materials
3 Select materials and reserve a seat
4 Prepare for your visit


1. Register for Access with Aeon

All researchers must register and create an account with Aeon, the Hoover Institution Library & Archives’ online request and reservation system. Aeon allows users to request materials, make a reservation, place digitization/duplication orders, track history of requests, and make changes. Any changes to requested materials and reservations must be made 7 days before your confirmed visit. For more information about Aeon, please read our Aeon user guide and our Aeon FAQs.

2. Research Materials

While there are many different ways to search for materials held at the Hoover Institution, most of our library materials can be found in SearchWorks (Stanford University Libraries’ online catalog). Our archival materials can be accessed from the Online Archive of California (OAC). While researching for materials to view in the reading room, you must be concurrently logged into Aeon to place requests and reserve a seat. If you have a question about our holdings or a particular collection, please contact us.

3. Select Materials and Reserve a Seat

Researchers must submit requests for materials and reserve a seat at least 7 calendar days in advance of their confirmed reservation date. While you are concurrently logged into Aeon, select the research materials that you want from SearchWorks or the OAC, by creating a new request. Because there are limits to the number of materials that can be circulated during your visit, please select materials from SearchWorks and/or the OAC in priority order. After each request is created, make sure you link it to a reservation time before you submit your request. Reservations can be made for a minimum of 4 consecutive hours up to a total of 8 hours per visit. Please note: reservations are confirmed when you have received an email from a Hoover Institution Library & Archives staff. 

4. Prepare for Your Visit

After you have submitted your request for materials and seat reservation in Aeon, you should receive an email sent by a Hoover Institution Library & Archives staff member.  If you do not receive an email, please contact us. This email will summarize the confirmation date and time,  the details of your requests as well as outline additional documentation that will help you prepare for your visit.

If this is your first visit, you will be asked to email a photograph of yourself, in advance, which will be used to create your Library & Archives reader card. Upon arrival at the reading room, you will be required to show photo identification, such as a driver's license, passport, school ID, or other form of government-issued photographic identification, in order to complete the registration process. 

Additional Resources

To learn more about what to expect and how else we may be able to help you prepare for your visit, please review these additional resources and information about the reading room and our collections.

Using the reading room

Learn more about our collections


Using the Chiang Kai-shek & Chiang Ching-kuo Diaries

The Hoover Institution has been helping to preserve the handwritten diaries of Chiang Kai-shek and Chiang Ching-kuo since members of the Chiang family deposited them at Hoover in 2005. To ensure the preservation of the diaries, and to conform to the wishes of family members, use copies of the handwritten pages are available in the Library & Archives reading room.

2005年底胡佛檔案館與蔣介石家屬達成暫存協議,由胡佛保存蔣介石與蔣經國日記原件, 並於胡佛檔案館閱覽室向來訪者公開日記複印件。





The Hoover Institution Library & Archives reading room is now open to the public. Please follow our social media channels for the latest news and updates.

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Mon-Fri 8:30 am – 4:30 pm

434 Galvez Mall,
Stanford University, CA 94305
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Frequently Asked Questions