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Library of Congress: Asian Division

General Information

Facility: Library of Congress Asian Division
101 Independence Avenue Southeast
Washington, DC 20540
Phone: (202) 707-5000
FAX: (202) 252-3336
Email: N/A
Hours: Hours of operation

About the Library:

Founded in 1800, the library's main building was constructed in 1886-1897. Upon its public unveiling, it was considered the safest and costliest library in the world.

The Japanese collection was started in 1875 with a reciprocal agreement between the governments of the United States and Japan concerning government publications. Since, it has grown to include over 1 million items.

For more information about the Japanese collection, please contact the Asian Reading Room at (202) 707-5426, (202) 707-3766, or via inquiry form.

Summary of Collections

Collection size: as of May 2014 The Asian Division contained over 18 million items of which 1.2 million volumes were in Japanese with an additional 3,600 Japanese serial titles. The Library of Congress is the official depository library for the United States and has reciprocal agreements with many libraries worldwide including the National Diet Library of Japan.

Notable Collections:


Online catalog:

How to Use the Facility

Using the Collections

All in-person researchers are required to have a Reader Identification Card, issued for free by the Library. These cards can be obtained at the Reader Registration Station in the Madison Building, room LM 140, by presenting a valid driver's license, state ID, or passport and completing the registration process. Researchers must be at least 16 years of age to register. Items cannot be borrowed. For more information, please visit this site or call (202) 707-5278.

Photocopying and Scanning

Items held by the Library of Congress can be duplicated for a price. Formats available for delivery include digital scan, PDF, and print, paper photocopy, or microfilm. Audio, video, film, and other multimedia formats cannot be duplicated at this time. For pricing information, please visit this site.

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North American Coordinating Council on Japanese Library Resources
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