The State Library’s collection includes much more than what is available on the shelves in the public areas. A large proportion of the collections are held in storage areas known as ‘stacks’.  These items can only be retrieved by a staff member.

The online catalogue will indicate if an item is on the shelves in the public area or needs to be requested for retrieval. You will need your State Library membership card barcode to complete the request for the item via the online catalogue and retrieval system.

Items are retrieved every 30 minutes during opening hours and delivered to the retrieval shelves on Level 3. Private archives, rare, old and valuable items are delivered to the Leah Jane Cohen Reading Room on Level 3. Retrieval services stop 30 minutes before Library closing times.

Items are held for three days and may be available longer upon request.

To place an online request for retrieval

Search the catalogue for the item:

  • Click the Request it button
  • Enter specific details to assist staff, including the date and time you need the item.
  • A confirmation message: "Your request was successful" will appear
  • Collect the item from Level 3 after 30 minutes.

Items are retrieved every half hour at the times shown below:

10:30am, 11am, 11:30am, 12pm, 1pm and then on the half hour until 5:00pm

Hints and tips

Private archives can be extensive; please check the collection listing attached to the catalogue record and provide specific details of the items you would like retrieved. Please see staff on Level 3 if you need assistance.

Access to some items is restricted and you may need permission prior to viewing them. Please see staff on Level 3 for assistance.

Access to State Archives must be requested in advance, through the State Records Office catalogue, or in person in the Leah Jane Cohen Reading Room. Materials are retrieved once a day Monday to Friday. Requests received by 4pm will be available the following day from 11am. Items will be delivered to the Leah Jane Cohen Reading Room for viewing. For more information, refer to Accessing the State Archives Collection.