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The Nation's Largest Libraries

A listing by volumes held

ALA Library Fact Sheet Number 22

This fact sheet lists the top 100 largest libraries in the United States by volumes held.

Number Source Institution

Volumes Held

1 L Library of Congress 32,124,001
2 A Harvard University  15,826,570
3 P Boston Public Library 15,686,902
4 A Yale University  12,368,757
5 A University of Illinois - Urbana-Champaign  10,524,935
6 A University of California - Berkeley  10,094,417
7 A Columbia University  9,455,312
8 A University of Texas - Austin 9,022,363
9 A University of Michigan  8,273,050
10 S Stanford University  8,200,000

11 A University of California - Los Angeles  8,157,182
12 A University of Wisconsin - Madison  8,015,081
13 P County of Los Angeles Public Library 7,884,239
14 A Cornell University  7,785,263
15 P Detroit Public Library 7,770,077
16 A University of Chicago  7,765,583
17 A Indiana University  7,374,784
18 A University of Washington 7,111,065
19 A University of Minnesota  6,713,629
20 P Queens Borough Public Library 6,632,209

21 A Princeton University  6,618,464
22 P Free Library of Philadelphia 6,307,978
23 P Los Angeles Public Library 6,239,892
24 A Ohio State University  6,180,744
25 P Public Library of Cincinnati & Hamilton County 6,158,530
26 P New York Public Library, The Branch Libraries 5,954,897
27 A University of Pennsylvania  5,880,460
28 A University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill  5,816,677
29 P Chicago Public Library 5,806,885
30 A Duke University  5,665,241

31 A University of Arizona  5,533,482
32 P Dallas Public Library 5,228,516
33 A New York University  5,144,879
34 A University of Virginia  5,102,954
35 A Pennsylvania State University Libraries 5,069,854
36 A University of Oklahoma  4,918,351
37 A University of Pittsburgh  4,909,264
38 A Michigan State University  4,864,603
39 D San Diego Public Library 4,689,575
40 A Northwestern University Library  4,687,828

41 P Brooklyn Public Library 4,687,393
42 A University of Iowa  4,592,560
43 A University of Georgia  4,345,939
44 P Cleveland Public Library 4,273,222
45 A Arizona State University Libraries 4,254,719
46 A Rutgers University  4,203,237
47 A University of Kansas  4,194,283
48 A University of Florida  4,178,355
49 P Miami-Dade Public Library System 4,124,469
50 A University of Southern California  3,968,814

51 A Washington University - St. Louis 3,947,725
52 P Houston Public Library 3,903,369
53 A Brigham Young University  3,738,847
54 A University of Tennessee - Knoxville 3,734,731
55 A North Carolina State University  3,687,733
56 A Johns Hopkins University  3,686,575
57 A University of Colorado  3,641,096
58 A University of Connecticut  3,629,755
59 A University of Rochester  3,607,310
60 A Texas A&M University Libraries 3,581,226

61 A Brown University  3,568,944
62 A University of California - Davis  3,549,004
63 B Hawaii State Public Library System 3,540,244
64 A University of South Carolina  3,532,538
65 A University of Maryland  3,501,054
66 A Louisiana State University  3,499,137
67 P Buffalo & Erie County Public Library 3,480,788
68 A Wayne State University  3,443,247
69 A State University of New York - Buffalo  3,423,148
70 A University of Hawaii 3,407,167

71 A University of Kentucky  3,406,377
72 P Mid-Continent Public Library 3,384,239
73 P St. Louis Public Library 3,369,581
74 P Cuyahoga County Public Library 3,361,375
75 P Broward County Libraries Division 3,317,649
76 A University of Missouri - Columbia  3,295,378
77 A Vanderbilt University  3,264,231
78 A University of Utah  3,254,709
79 P King County Library System 3,248,616
80 A University of Notre Dame  3,246,968

81 A University of California - San Diego  3,236,219
82 A University of Massachusetts  3,230,697
83 A University of Cincinnati Libraries 3,209,337
84 A Emory University  3,184,754
85 A Syracuse University  3,180,427
86 A University of Nebraska - Lincoln  3,113,473
87 A Tulane 3,076,954
88 A Temple University  3,071,624
89 P Minneapolis Public Library 3,047,870
90 A Southern Illinois University - Carbondale  3,026,125

91 A University of Miami  3,013,867
92 P Montgomery County Dept. of Public Libraries 2,995,834
93 A Auburn University  2,984,279
94 P Milwaukee Public Library 2,948,094
95 A Florida State University Library 2,947,702
96 P District of Columbia Public Library 2,943,551
97 A University of California - Santa Barbara  2,880,294
98 P Jacksonville Public Library 2,856,089
99 P Enoch Pratt Free Library 2,842,966
100 A Massachusetts Institute of Technology  2,807,568

Sources

L=Library of Congress - Financial, Annual Reports: Year 2006 at a Glance. Member of ARL (Association of Research Libraries <http://www.arl.org>).

A=ARL Statistics 2005-06.

P=Public Library Data Service Statistical Report 2007. Chicago: Public Library Association (PLA, a division of the American Library Association <http://www.ala.org/pla>), 2007. See the PLDS Statistical Report web page for more information.

S=Stanford Facts 2007: Stanford Libraries. Former member of ARL.

B=Direct communication from the Hawaii State Public Library System.

D=Library Fact Sheet: Facts About the Library, Fiscal Year 2006 of the San Diego Public Library.

 


Users should be aware that public library and academic library collections are dissimilar.

The ARL academic library study takes its definition of volume from the National Information Standards Organization (NISO): A single physical unit of any printed, typewritten, handwritten, mimeographed, or processed work, distinguished from other units by a separate binding, encasement, portfolio, or other clear distinction, which has been cataloged, classified, and made ready for use, and which is typically the unit used to charge circulation transactions.

The PLDS public library report defines "holdings" on its questionnaire: For the purpose of this data service, holdings will be defined as the number of cataloged items (number of items, NOT number of titles) plus paperbacks and videocassettes even if uncataloged.


NOTE: Previous versions of this fact sheet can be accessed via the Internet Archive Wayback Machine using the original URL <http://www.ala.org/library/fact22.html>. And this URL still works as a "shortcut" link to this web page.


October 2007


For more information on this or other fact sheets, including copies of previous versions, contact the ALA Library Reference Desk by telephone: 800-545-2433, extension 2153; fax: 312-280-3255; e-mail: library@ala.org; or regular mail: ALA Library, American Library Association, 50 East Huron Street, Chicago, IL 60611-2795.




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