Arts and Entertainment

  • This digital collection contains materials on entertainment and the arts from the Indiana State Library's collection. Entertainment comprises the multitudinous ways Hoosiers have amused and enjoyed themselves, including leisure activities, sports, hobbies, and performances of all types. Items include materials about various entertainment industries, such as filmmaking; artists' works within the visual, performance, and literary art world; as well as information about the artists and entertainers themselves. Check out the collection to learn more about Indiana's rich cultural history through sketches, engravings, paintings, literary works, music, plays, and other historical works from the late 19th to the early 21st century.

Broadsides Collection

  • This collection comprises a variety of broadsides, posters, flyers, meeting notices, and similar, single-sheet printed items from the Indiana State Library Rare Books and Manuscripts Division. The Broadsides Collection spans the breadth of Indiana's territorial and state history, with the bulk of the collection from the 19th and 20th century, and represents a range of events, movements, organizations, people, and trends that denote facets of the history of Indiana and its people. New broadsides will be added periodically.

Charitable Organizations and Philanthropy

Civilian Conservation Corps

  • The Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC), a prominent and popular part of President Franklin D. Roosevelt's New Deal, was a voluntary public work relief program, operating from 1933 to 1942 for unemployed, single men, between the ages of 17 to 28. The CCC created manual labor jobs in the conservation and development of natural resources in rural lands owned by federal, state, and local governments. The CCC led to a public awareness and appreciation of the outdoors and natural resources, as well as the continued need for a comprehensive national program for the protection and development of the nation's natural resources. In Indiana, the CCC helped create and develop many of our state parks for community usage. By 1942, the need for work relief declined and Congress voted to end the program.

Company Employee Newsletters

  • Many major Indiana companies and business provided internal newsletters for the employees. The State Library has a large collections of these newsletters, which contain rich information about the staff, their families, and the company’s inner workings. Among them are Ayrogram from L.S. Ayres and Company in Indianapolis, Delco-Remy Clan from the Delco-Remy Division of General Motors Corporation in Anderson, and Bendixline from Bendix Corporation in South Bend. More content will be added in the future.

Education in Indiana

  • The Indiana State Library maintains a large collection of publications on education, including annual reports from the Superintendent of Public Instruction [1853 to present], pertaining to the history of education in the Hoosier state. Among these resources are high school and college yearbooks, reports from the Indiana State Teacher's Association, educational publications for teachers, school directories, and periodicals from long-closed institutes from around the state. Relevant unpublished materials from the library's manuscripts collections include papers from students and educators—such as correspondence, report cards, copy books, school assignments, examinations, teaching certificates, oral histories, and photographs—as well as records from educational institutions and organizations.

Genealogy Collection

Highlights of the ISL Manuscript Collection

  • The Rare Books and Manuscripts Division of the Indiana State Library houses many rare and unique documents, volumes, objects, and ephemera never before publicly displayed. This online collection features a number of these noteworthy and remarkable items, such as a letter from Helen Keller, ancient Sumerian and Babylonian cuneiform tablets (circa 2800-544 B.C.E.), and a piece of ivy taken from President Abraham Lincoln's casket. Another extraordinary item is the original 1818 Treaty of St. Mary's between the United States government and the Miami people, signed by renowned early Hoosiers Jonathan Jennings, Benjamin Parke, and William Conner and Native leaders, such as Peshewa, or Jean Baptiste Richardville. This digital collection will continue to grow as more images are added periodically.

Hoosier LGBTQ+ History

Indiana Authors and Their Works

Indiana Documentary Editions

Indiana Historical Legislative Documents

  • The Indiana Historical Legislative Documents Collection contains historical materials produced by the Indiana General Assembly. In order to preserve these historical materials and make them easier for the general public to access and study, digitized copies are made available in this collection. Included are the Indiana House Journals and the Indiana Senate Journals which document the proceedings of each session. For selective years, the debates of both chambers of the legislative branch were documented in the Brevier Legislative Reports.

Indiana Historical Print Collection

Indiana History Bulletin

Indiana State Agency Documents

  • The Indiana Historical State Agency Documents is a special collection of historical state agency publications. The Indiana State Library has state publications that span the 19th century to today. In order to preserve the older materials and make them easier for the general public to access and study, digitized copies are made available in this collection. For the purposes of this collection, our definition of “state agency” includes departments, boards, bureaus, commissions, councils, and committees that carry out various functions of the Executive Branch of Indiana state government. This collection will continue to grow and as materials from the Indiana Division’s print collection are digitized and added periodically.

INverse Poetry Archive

  • INverse celebrates and preserves the diverse range of Indiana poetry for future generations of Indiana writers and readers. The brainchild of former Indiana Poet Laureate Adrian Matejka (2018-2019), it is a collaboration of the Poet Laureate, the Indiana State Library, and the Indiana Arts Commission. Residents of Indiana are encouraged to submit poems to the archive annually between February 1 and April 30. Visit the Indiana Arts Commission's page for more information about the project.

John Tipton Collection

Ku Klux Klan in Indiana

Manuscripts Small Collections

  • This online collection comprises documents, photographs, pamphlets, scrapbooks, and other materials from the Small Collections of the Indiana State Library Rare Books and Manuscripts Division. The repository currently holds over 3,300 small collections related to Indiana&qpos;s people, places, and events on the topics of agriculture; business and industry; church history; communities and neighborhoods; education; ethnically- and racially-identified groups; families; government; medicine; military affairs; notable Hoosiers; the Northwest Territory; organized labor; politics; professional associations; religion; social services; transportation; and women. Moreover, these collections constitute part of the largest collection of Civil War items in the state. The physical collection continues to grow and materials are added to this online collection periodically.

Map Collection

Open Spaces, Historic Places

Oral History Collection

  • This collection comprises many oral histories from the Indiana State Library Rare Books and Manuscripts Division, which were recorded during an extensive oral history project with hundreds of Hoosiers from around the state during the 1970s and 1980s. Those Indiana natives who contributed to the project included civil servants, educators, correctional employees, journalists, religious leaders, engineers, musicians, war veterans, and other public figures, who shared rich experiences on the topics of Indiana politics, Prohibition, the Great Depression, the Ku Klux Klan, Hoosier authors, state prisons, agriculture, medicine, the world wars, and family and local history. New oral history transcripts and audio files will be added periodically.

Photograph Collections

  • Containing over 25,000 images, the Photograph Collection of the Indiana State Library Rare Books and Manuscripts Division depicts historical people, places, and events in Indiana from the 19th to the 21st century. The pictures include individual photographs in a variety of formats, photograph albums, and lantern slides portraying a miscellany of subjects, such as Indiana counties and cities, notable Hoosiers and families, architecture, businesses, organizations, transportation, and significant events in Indiana, United States and world history.

Trade, Association, and Club Publications

  • The Indiana State Library's collection comprises numerous publications from various clubs and professional organization intended for professionals and hobbyists who work or are interested in a specific business, industry, hobby, or topic. Among these publications are the Indiana Construction Recorder for the construction industry, the Indiana State Beekeepers Association newsletter, and The "Y's" Man from the African-American men’s branch of the YMCA. More content will be added in the future..

Trade Catalogs

Will H. Hays Collection

  • This collection comprises the correspondence and speeches ranging from 1922 to 1945 from the Will H. Hays collection (L560) at the Indiana State Library. Hays served as the Republican National Committee chairman during 1918-1921 and was the campaign manager for President Warren Harding in 1920. Harding appointed Hays as postmaster general in 1921. Hays later became president of the Motion Picture Producers and Distributors of America (MPPDA) from 1922 to 1945, where he established the Hays Code of acceptable content for motion pictures produced for a public audience.

    Will H. Hays: A Chronology of His Life — View the timeline to learn more about Hays and the history of the motion picture industry.

    Digitization of the Will H. Hays collection is made possible through grant funding from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC).

Women in Hoosier History

  • This collection comprises materials related to women's history in Indiana, including letters, papers, photographs, pamphlets, periodicals, and other published and unpublished materials, from and about Indiana women, both ordinary and extraordinary. Women's history encompasses the agency of women as individuals and in organizations, daily life, contributions to society, and movements, particularly women's rights. New materials will be added to the collection on a regular basis.

World War I and the Hoosier Experience

  • Over 150,000 people from Indiana answered the call to serve when the United States entered the Great War on April 6, 1917. The war officially ended on Armistice Day, November 11, 1918, although many were stationed overseas until mid-1919. This collection comprises correspondence, diaries, photographs and other materials detailing the experiences of Hoosiers during World War I, both at home and abroad. Hoosier men and women were aided the war effort in a variety of ways, as soldiers, pilots, nurses, members of the American Cross, and civilians engaged in war work, not to mention everyday citizens. New materials are being added to the Digital Collections continuously in commemoration of the World War I Centennial.