The Frances E. Willard Memorial Library & Archives is located behind the Frances Willard House Museum. The Library, a two-story addition to the 1922 Woman’s Christian Temperance Union Administration Building, opened in 1940 to serve WCTU staff working on educational projects and publications. The focus shifted over the years as the collection began to incorporate archival materials, documenting the history of the national and international WCTU.
The collection now offers a rich and unique body of material—letters, documents, images, serial publications, scrapbooks—of interest to scholars of women’s history, temperance, rhetoric, social reform, and social/political movements, in American and transnational contexts. The collection is also frequently used by independent writers, K-12 students, and genealogists. The Library & Archives has been cited in innumerable monographs, articles, and dissertations—and, most recently, in the Ken Burns documentary, Prohibition.
See the Library & Archives’ brochure for more information about holdings and access, and the fee schedule for information about copies and permissions. The Willard Library & Archives is open by appointment only. Please contact the archivist at
Read about our 2012 digital history initiative and grant in our Autumn 2012 newsletter.