Harold S. Colton Memorial Library

Harold Colton Research Center

Harold Colton Research Center home of the Harold S. Colton Memorial Library


The Harold S. Colton Memorial Library  began with the donation of Harold S. and Mary-Russell Ferrell Colton's personal library. As the collection grew, the library found a home in the Museum Harold Colton Research Center Building, built in 1954. The main research area is referred to as the Katharine Bartlett Reading Room, named for the long-time friend of the Colton's and first Librarian/Historical Curator for the Museum.

The library's collection has grown to include several hundred periodicals, 50,000 books, 25,000 separates (pamphlets/booklets), and several thousand maps. The Library's collections are strongest in the fields of archaeology, ethnology, and geology, with additional materials on biology, geography, history, art, and museology. The Library, with its strong retrospective collection, is an indispensable resource for anyone doing research on the Colorado Plateau. Please be advised that the Library is currently available by appointment only. Only Museum staff may check out materials from the Library. Learn more about the Library & Archives Policies.

Due to software incompatibility, we have removed the "Search Our Holdings" link which allowed researchers to check the library's holdings. Please use the following PDFs to search our books, journals and magazines, and reports and surveys. Unfortunately, all of the library's holdings have not been entered into our database. If you are looking for a publication that fits what we collect but you don't see it listed, please email the archivist.

Books (pdf - updated: 2015)
Journals and Magazines (pdf - updated: 2015)
Reports and Surveys (pdf - updated: 2015)
Separates (pdf - updated: 2015)

The library has access to the Arizona State Library with its excellent selection of online databases. These resources are freely available to Arizona residents at this link.

Researchers are encouraged to find electronic copies or other repositories holding publications of interest by utilizing tools like:

When requesting photocopies of articles from Museum publications, such as Plateau, Museum Notes or copies of the Museum's research publications or bulletins, please contact our Publications Department first. They may have copies available for sale which would be available to you more swiftly and cost-effectively than having the same materials duplicated by library staff. To assist with citations from older publications for early Museum publications, please review the indices for the Museum Notes and Plateau provided below: