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HMCPL Special Collections: Archive Collections

HMCPL Special Collections is the community's archive. We empower individuals to seek their past, explore Huntsville and Madison County, and connect with history.

Archive Collections

The Archives Collection houses rare, fragile, and unique material related to Huntsville and Madison County.

Search in Archival Collections: Special Collections has launched a new portal to perform keyword searches in their archival collections. This is exclusive to the original records in the archive (for rare books and genealogy/local history books, you can still search on the library's website). We are continuing to work on this portal, and we are constantly adding new information to it. We appreciate any feedback on the platform (especially if something isn't working the way it should!).

Access the Archival Collections here!

Photographs: We are preparing to upload photographs to this platform, as well. This will happen this Fall. We appreciate your patience while we finish this aspect of the platform. In the meantime, anyone wishing to do photographic research can contact our archivist Cait Monroe (

Sampling of Archival Records

Family Papers - including the Clay Collection and other local families. Things you'll find: correspondence, diaries, personal libraries, etc.

Photograph Collection - over 25,000 photographic prints and originals, with content ranging from depictions of street scenes and cotton mills throughout Huntsville’s history to portraits of prominent citizens. You can view a portion of these on the Digital Archive.

Business Records - including local shops and services and cotton mills.

Local History and Lineage Society Records - including Huntsville-Madison County Historical Society, DAR, UDC, TN Valley Genealogical Society, TN Valley Civil War Roundtable, etc.

Organizational Records - including Huntsville Public Library, Civic Club, etc.

Church Records - particularly early local churches

Artwork - including pieces by Howard Weeden and portraits by William Frye

Scrapbooks - from local organizations and individuals

Researching in the Archive

If you are interested in doing archival research or discovering local records, please email or call 256-532-5969.

If you are interested in volunteering in the archives, please visit our Volunteer Opportunities page.