The research library and archives of the History Center’s Library contain over 20,000 items and are an invaluable source of materials connected to Linn County history. From academics exploring the historical significance of the area, to individuals discovering their genealogical history, to local landowners researching their property’s past, the History Center offers original source documents to connect our county’s past with the present…and the future!
Following the flood of 2008, the History Center became a vital connection for information concerning the reconstruction of downtown Cedar Rapids. Many of the building owners and construction professionals in the area relied on our records and blueprints to restore and repair properties.
Available resources include:
- School annuals
- Local news paper clippings
- City directories and maps
- Pioneer diaries
- Civil War era letters
- Files on local people and businesses
- Historic publications
- So much more!
We also have wealth of information contained in our extensive collection of Oral History Video Interviews featuring a wide variety subjects from the Linn County area.
Conduct your own research with our help or hire one of our knowledgeable researchers to complete it for you. For a list of research services, visit this page.
The History Center houses a collection of more than 50,000 items, many more than be displayed at any one time. Historical items that come to us (largely by donations from local residents or businesses) are lovingly preserved and protected using state of-the-art preservation techniques and materials. Items must be protected against climate changes, environmental pollution and even natural disasters.
Items in the collection are both iconic and everyday, from well-known historic signage to utensils used in Linn county homes. Some of the items remain on permanent display in the gallery, while others are utilized in temporary displays, for research or in programming. All of the items tell the story of Linn County and honor its rich history.
If you are interested in donating an item or items to the History Center, check out our How to Donate page.