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Special Collections


The Special Collections Room at the Central Library contains books, photographs, pamphlets, maps and periodicals about Glendale and its history. Materials about neighboring cities and California as they pertain to Glendale, and books by local authors are also part of the collection. Special Collections materials are for reference only, and may not be borrowed.

Some of the Library's Special Collections are available online, including:

Early Glendale and Tropico

Explore a new collection of rare illustrated promotional booklets available at the Online Archive of California website. Dating from the early 1900s these booster materials present a snapshot of the culture and spirit of the early Glendale and Tropico communities, celebrating their unique civic, commercial and artistic characteristics. Of particular interest in many of these items, selected from the holdings of the Special Collections Room, are the photographs of Edward Weston, who opened his first photography studio in Tropico in the 1910s.

Library, Arts & Culture Department on History Pin

An exciting new way to experience Glendale history. Photographs are "pinned" to a map, allowing the user to compare past and present views of Glendale (and beyond). The site includes images from libraries, archives, and other institutions all over the world. Individuals are encouraged to share their photographs as well.

Start with the Library's profile page , or dive right into the map to begin exploring!

History Drive

Help us add chapters to Glendale's past by sharing or donating your photos and documents. Click here.

Special Collections' Photostream

The Library, Arts & Culture Department photograph collection on Flickr, featuring the Verdugo Views set, containing images used in the popular Glendale News-Press column written by Katherine Yamada.

Leslie C. Brand

The collection of historic photographs and documents related to Leslie C. Brand and his family while he was still living in El Miradero, featuring images of the rooms within the mansion and scenic views of the property. The collection also includes photographs of the Brand Library and Park, which were created from his home and property deeded to the City of Glendale.

Oral History Collection

The Library Oral History Collection, featuring interviews and event recordings from the 1950s up through the 1990s. The online collection will play on any computer with access to the Internet.

Glendale Mayors

The City of Glendale was incorporated February 16, 1906, and was governed by a Board Trustees from 1906 to 1921. The City of Glendale became a Chartered City upon ratification of its Charter on March 29, 1921, and the Board of Trustees became known as the City Council. Click here to see a gallery of the Presidents Of The Board Of Trustees, past and present Mayors.

Library Cards Tell Glendale's Story

Click here to see Glendale Library cards featuring historic photos from our Special Collections.


The Special Collections Room is open

Tuesday and Thursday
10 a.m. - 12 p.m.
1 - 3 p.m.
And by appointment.
Please call (818) 548-2037 for further information.

Email requests to: centlibref@ci.glendale.ca.us.

Mail requests to:

Library, Arts & Culture Department
Attention: Reference Department
222 East Harvard Street
Glendale, CA, 91205.

A stamped self-addressed envelope will help the library save money.


Last modified: Thursday, July 25, 2013 8:34:05 AM
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