The Research Library has a large collection of books, pamphlets, personal papers, drawings, posters, maps, newspapers, photographs, and other two-dimensional materials. These materials are related to a variety of topics related to the history of Buffalo and Western New York. Highlighted below are a few of the major topics represented in the collection.
Holland Land Company
The Holland Land Company was a major part of Western New York history. One of its agents, Joseph Ellicott, was an important figure in Buffalo in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. The Library has books, manuscripts, images, maps, and newspaper clippings related to the Holland Land Company and Ellicott Family.
The Larkin Company was founded in 1875 by John D. Larkin as a soap company. Later, the company expanded to sell furniture, china, dry goods, and other household items. The Administration Building, which once stood in downtown Buffalo, was designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. The Library holds books, theses, manuscripts, company records, Larkin photographs and catalogs, newspaper articles, postcards, and a variety of other materials related to the Larkin Company and its subsidiaries.
Millard Fillmore was the 13th President of the United States. He was a prominent figure in Buffalo in the 19th century- serving as a politician and a lawyer. The Library holds a number of documents written by Millard Fillmore. These documents were used to contribute to the Millard Fillmore Papers, a multi-repository collection of Fillmore documents. The microfilm of the Millard Fillmore Papers is available to view at the Library.
The Newlywed Project is a new collecting initiative to honor equal marriage in New York State. The Library is collecting documents from same-sex marriages such as photographs, copies of vows, newspaper announcements, vendor reciepts, and note cards. The collection will be archived and made available to future researchers.
The Pan-American Exposition was held in Buffalo in 1901. This exposition demonstrated the wealth of Buffalo at the time. The Museum and Research Library are housed in the only remaining building from the Pan-American Exposition. The Library holds books, pamphlets, scrapbooks, articles, sheet music, posters, maps, and other material related to the Pan American Exposition.
The video below is the first part of a film made by Thomas Edison in 1901. It takes the viewer around the Pan-American Exposition.