Visit the world's largest maritime library and archive collection at the National Maritime Museum
Find out how you can explore the collections for free online or in person.
Please find the item you want to order on the Archive or Library catalogue, click 'Request this Item' or 'Order', login or register and pick a date and time to visit.
NB: This procedure does not apply to items in the Collections (Objects) Catalogue.Also: Individual Crew Lists and Masters Certificates do not appear on the catalogue. Click here for more information.
To register and to request items to view you will need to use the Library's online request system, Aeon.
Register or Login
How to order items
The Library offers a document copying service to supply scans of items in our collection.
Find out more
We have prepared a detailed guide to help you prepare for your visit to the Caird Library.
If you have a question about accessing the Library and Archive collection, we recommend you check our FAQs. If you need further assistance, please do contact us:
Tel: +44 (0)20 8312 6516 during Library opening hours : Tuesday to Friday 10am to 4:45pm
Tuesday – Friday
Find out how our archives and catalogues can support your research
The Library collection includes over 100,000 books, 20,000 pamphlets, 20,000 bound periodicals including 200 current titles, and over 12,000 rare books spanning every aspect of maritime history, including: emigration, navigation, piracy, astronomy, shipping companies, shipwrecks, biographies, the two World Wars, horology, Merchant and Royal Navy.
Also included are many original documents, manuscripts, atlases, maps, sea charts and periodicals. There are 6,000 books and printed resources available to study on open access shelves.
The collections are available to everyone and can be accessed for free online or in person. All that is required is to register for a Reader's Ticket.
A team of professional librarians and archivists are available to help and advise readers at all times.
If you are not able to visit the Caird Library and Archive, staff are happy to answer enquiries by telephone, email and letter about items in our collection and can offer up to 15 minutes of free research time.