Research facilities

The Kennedy Library has two research rooms:

Main Research Room: Located on the 4th floor and the point of entry for all research visits. Researchers doing textual research conduct their research in this room.

Audiovisual Research Room: Located on the 3rd floor for research of still and moving images and sound recordings. Researchers are escorted to the 3rd floor after checking in at the Main Research Room.

What you may bring

You are allowed to bring the following items into the Research Room:

  • Laptop computer
  • Digital camera
  • Some scanners (check with Reference staff)
  • Pencil

We will ask you to stow all other items – notebooks, pens, bags, brief cases, books, coats, etc. – in a secure storage locker outside of the Research Room.

Scheduling your visit

The Kennedy Library research rooms are open to the general public. All researchers are advised to make appointments prior to visiting the Main Research Room.  All on-site audiovisual research (photographs, sound recordings, and moving images) is by appointment only and is subject to staffing availability. AV research appointments will be accepted for Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays. Please email the AV Reference Archivist (see contact info below) to schedule an appointment, and include a list of materials you wish to see during your visit. Sound recording research requires at least two weeks advance notice so that listening copies can be prepared.

Research hours: Monday through Friday, 8:30 to 4:30. Closed on weekends and federal holidays. 

For textual & oral history research: 617.514.1629 or

For audiovisual research: 617.514.1622 or

For Hemingway research: 617.514.1629 or

Researcher orientation

Before you come to the Kennedy Library, we strongly encourage you to review the Orientation for Researchers at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). This orientation provides practical guidance on the care and handling of archival materials while conducting research in any of NARA's archival facilities. You will be asked to take the orientation when you come to the Kennedy Library archives.

Ask an Archivist

JFKWHP-AR6296-E (crop): President Kennedy Speaks at Press Conference, 25 January 1961

Do you have a research question? Ask an Archivist.

Remote Research is Here

JFKWHP-ST-C94-4-61 (crop): White House Army Signal Agency (WHASA) Advance Trip to Paris, 8 March 1961

Can't come to the Kennedy Library? Explore our digital collections.