Reference and special collections

Library members can search our online catalogue for research material not available for loan.

People using a library

Stay informed

To access reference books you’ll need to visit the library branch where the title is held.

Members can also use the library’s database tools, including a range of reference resources, newspaper archives and encyclopaedias.

Drug information

All library branches have a host of information about drug use and the health, legal and social impact of drugs.

The collection is part of a NSW project – Drug Info @ Your Library  – and it can be found on stands inside each branch. You can also access the information in the collection online.

Legal information

The libraries are part of a Legal Information Access Centre project to provide an up-to-date collection of law books in plain language, as well as simple kits for writing your will or a letter to your landlord. The Legal Answers website provided by the State Library of NSW provides similar information online.  

Local history

Find out about the rich local history of our city in the reference collections available at all branches.

Items are not for loan.

The Sydney Reference Collection is available for consultation at the City of Sydney Archives.

Browse the collection on the library catalogue.

To make use of the Sydney Reference Collection you will need to contact the archives team on 02 9265 9618 or [email protected] and make an appointment.