Plan Your Visit

Welcome to the new Tennessee State Library & Archives building located in downtown Nashville! The Library & Archives is free and open to the public.  

Experience Tennessee’s story through interactive exhibits highlighting the state’s most precious historical documents.

LOCATION:

The Library & Archives is conveniently located on the Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park at the intersection of Rep. John Lewis Way N. and Jefferson St. across from the Tennessee State Museum and the Nashville Farmers’ Market.

Address:

1001 Rep. John Lewis Way N.
Nashville, TN 37219

We encourage you to contact our reference desk at 615-741-2764 or ask@tsla.libanswers.com for the latest guidance on planning your visit.

OPERATING HOURS:

The Exhibit Lobby is open to the public Monday through Saturday: 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. CT.

The Library, Microfilm, and Manuscripts Reading Room is open to researchers Tuesday through Saturday 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. CT.

The Legislative History area is open Tuesday through Friday 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. CT.

The Library for Accessible Books and Media (LABM) is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. CT.

The Library & Archives is closed on State and Federal Holidays. Click HERE for a list of closure dates.

ADMISSION:

Admission to the Tennessee State Library & Archives is free.

GUIDED TOURS:

Guided Tours of the Library & Archives are available by request, Tuesday-Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. CT. Please email ask@tsla.libanswers.com to schedule your group tour.

Second Saturdays at the Library & Archives -- Guided tours of the new building are available on the second Saturday of each month through October. Tours begin every hour, on the hour, starting at 10 a.m. with the last tour beginning at 3 p.m. This event is free to the public. Reservations are not required.

Lunchtime Speaker Series Commemorating Tennessee’s 225 Years of History-- Tennessee State Library & Archives is launching a new lecture series revealing the stories behind significant events in Tennessee’s rich 225-year history. The Lunchtime Speaker Series events will be in-person and live-streamed on the Library & Archives’ Facebook page and the Secretary of State’s YouTube channel. Each event will take place from Noon to 1 p.m. In-person attendees are encouraged to bring their lunch. This series is free to the public. In-person seating is limited. Reserve your seat to attend the first Lunchtime Speaker Series event on Sept. 10 in person.

  • Sept. 10, 2021 - A Look Back at Tennessee’s Centennial Celebration in 1896/7 - the story behind world's fair style event in Nashville led by Historian David E. Ewing - Make a reservation to attend in person
  • Nov. 5, 2021 - Tennessee's First People - Native American life and culture in early Tennessee led by Archeologist Aaron Dieter-Wolf
  • Feb. 11, 2022 - Why Tennessee is Known as the Volunteer State - history of the nickname and Tennessee's service in military conflicts led by Lipscomb University Professor Tim Johnson
  • May 6, 2022 - Tennessee's Land and Pioneers - how Tennessee’s topography and geology impacted where pioneers settled led by Aaron Astor, a Historian and Associate Professor at Maryville College

USE OF LIBRARY & ARCHIVES MATERIALS:

Policies and guidelines for the use of Library & Archives materials and collections are available HERE.

REGISTRATION AND SECURITY:

All Library & Archives patrons are required to present a state or federal ID card (such as a driver's license) prior to entering the Reading Room. Patron library cards provide access to the second floor Reading Room.

Briefcases, bags, totes, purses, and notebooks are subject to examination by a staff member when entering or leaving the Reading Room.

Lockers are available for patrons to store belongings during their visit. The Library & Archives is not responsible for any personal items left unattended. Visitors using original manuscripts will be required to leave their belongings in a locker. 

Backpacks must be stored in a locker. If a backpack is too large to fit in a locker, then it must either be locked in the patron's vehicle or stored in the main lobby while using Library & Archives materials.

COVID-19 POLICIES:

Per state and local guidelines, face coverings are now optional for the public and staff. Staff will continue maintaining the recommended six feet distance when interacting with visitors. 

QUESTIONS:

For questions about the visiting the Library & Archives or to book a tour, please contact  ask@tsla.libanswers.com or 615-741-2764.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION:

Parking: The Library & Archives provides free patron parking in its garage. To access the garage, patrons must obtain a library card at the first-floor receptionist desk.

First-time patrons may temporarily park in the parallel street parking on Rep. John Lewis Way N. After receiving an activated library card from the security receptionist, patrons should move their vehicles to the garage via the ramp on Jackson Street/Junior Gilliam Way.

On weekends, visitors may also park free in the state employee parking lots around the Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park.

Walking: The Library & Archives is conveniently located on the northeast corner of Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park directly across from the Tennessee State Museum. 

Driving: The Tennessee State Library & Archives is located at 1001 Rep. John Lewis Way North, immediately south of Jefferson Street. Click HERE for driving directions to our location.

Tour Busses: Hop On, Hop Off tours offered by both Old Town Trolley and Gray Line  have a stop near the Tennessee State Museum and Nashville Farmers’ Market. The Library & Archives is a brief walk across Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park.