Georgia Archives

University System of Georgia

Things to know before you visit

Access and Security

When you enter the Archives you will be facing the Customer Service Desk where you will register and get a research card.

Registration is required for access to the Reference Room. One of the following forms of identification is required for registration:

  • Driver’s license or other state photo ID card issued by Department of Motor Vehicles

  • U.S. state, county, or city government employee ID

  • ID from an accredited college/university/high school

  • U.S. military ID

  • U.S. passport

  • Passport issued by a U.S. recognized foreign government.

Americans with Disabilities Act

Every effort will be made to accommodate researchers with special requirements for physical access. Please inform us of your needs at the time of registration or call 678-364‐3710 before your visit.


Hand-held cameras may be used without a flash in the Reference Room to photograph documents as long as the materials being photographed are handled in accordance with our standard guidelines. The researcher is responsible for complying with copyright laws. The use of personal cameras in the Original Document Reading Area requires permission of the Collections Manager. No extra lighting or equipment such as tripods or copy stands is permitted in either area. For security purposes, photos of the building or other researchers are not permitted. (Standard building photos are available for use by researchers – see staff for details). Permission to photograph does not grant permission to publish.

Cellular telephones

Cell phones or pagers on silent or vibrate mode are permitted. Please move immediately to the lobby to conduct your conversation. This eliminates any disturbance to your fellow researchers. Please note that due to the building construction materials, it may be difficult to get a signal inside the building.


Laptops may be used in the Reference Room, Microfilm Library, and Original Documents Reading Area. You must leave your laptop case in a locker, but you can bring the laptop, power cord, and mouse with you. Electrical outlets are available; however, please note that the Georgia Archives is not responsible for loss or damage due to power failures or fluctuations. Use of the Archives computers is limited to research related to the holdings of the Archives. Inappropriate use is strictly prohibited and will result in the loss of research privileges. Personal flash drives may be used to store images of documents from Archives computers and microfilm readers. No software, images, or information may be loaded onto Archives computers.


Self- service copies and printouts cost $.20 per page from books, periodicals, and computers, and $.30 per page from microfilm/microfiche or original records. Payment is made on the honor system. When you are ready to leave for the day, total the number of copies you made from the books and folders, as well as the number of copies from the microfilm, and report it to the staff at the Reference Desk. They will provide you with a yellow payment slip to take to the Customer Service Desk, where you will pay for your copies before you leave. Failure to pay for copies will result in the loss of research privileges.

If there are problems with any machine, please do not continue to make copies. Please ask staff for assistance; this will help us keep costs down by limiting waste of paper and toner. Please limit your use of equipment to one hour if other researchers are waiting. You may use your personal flash drive to save images from the computers and the microfilm reader/printers at no cost.

Reproductions of original documents will be coordinated by staff in the Original Documents Reading Area. Prices vary based on type of materials and equipment required for reproduction.


The copyright law of the United States (Title 17, United States Code) governs the making of photocopies or other reproductions of copyrighted material. This institution reserves the right to refuse to accept a copying order if, in its judgment, fulfillment of the order would involve a violation of copyright law.


During an emergency evacuation, please leave all materials and follow instructions from the Reference Staff. Because our main priority is to get you out of the building quickly and safely, you will not be able to go to the lockers while evacuating.

Food and Lodging

A patron lounge is available on-site. There are a number of hotels at exit 233 of I-75 and restaurants both on Jonesboro Road and nearby. The Customer Service staff will be happy to offer more information.

Headphone Use

You may use headphones if the sound is inaudible to others.

Health and Safety

The Georgia Archives follows health and safety protocols based on the latest guidance from the Georgia Dept. of Health and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The CDC currently considers the Atlanta area and Clayton County to be at low risk for community transmission of COVID. Visitors and staff who would like to continue to wear a mask while inside the building are welcome to do so.

Loan of Materials

As a research institution with unique holdings, the Georgia Archives does not participate in interlibrary loan or the temporary loan of materials to researchers. This is so that the materials are here every time you come in to look at them.


Lockers are available in various sizes at no charge. You may choose one that is convenient for you. Please do not leave materials overnight. Materials left will be removed and discarded. Make sure the lockers are locked and keep the key with you at all times. To open lockers, please turn the key to the right and move the knob to the right. To lock, turn the key to the left and push the knob to the left. Please ask staff if you need assistance.

Lost and Found

The lost and found area is located at the Customer Service Desk. Items are held for 30 days and then discarded or donated to charity as appropriate.

Original Materials

In the Original Documents Reading Area, materials will be used under close staff supervision and researchers will have their materials inspected upon entry and exit of the room. Personal items, except computers and cameras, are not permitted. Paper is provided for notes. Original documents, rare books, and maps may not be copied by researchers. Staff will arrange for copies of these items. Same day service is usually not available. Records are not retrieved after 3:30 p.m. and this area closes at 4:00 p.m.


Free parking is available in front of the building. There is additional free parking in the lot behind the Archives (entry is from Clayton State Boulevard).

Patron Lounge

There is a microwave in the Patron Lounge. There is no refrigerator or sink in the Lounge. The Georgia Archives is closed for lunch from noon to 1:00 PM and all patrons must leave the building. There are several fast-food and sit-down restaurants available within a few miles of the Archives.

Prohibited Items

To ensure the safety of the materials, certain items are prohibited in the Reference Room, Microfilm Library, and Original Documents Reading Area, including food, drinks, tobacco products, ink pens, markers, highlighters, colored pencils, scissors, tape, Post-it® notes or similar self-adhesive notes, copiers of any type, enclosed items (including, but not limited to, briefcases, purses, fanny packs, bags, pencil cases, envelopes – even if clear), umbrellas, coats, scarves, gloves and other outerwear and any item staff deems a security risk. If a coat is necessary for your personal comfort, it may be worn in the Reference Room and it must be removed for inspection by Security upon your departure. No coats are permitted in the Original Document Reading Area.

Firearms or weapons of any type are not permitted.

Microfilm or other media from external sources may not be brought into the Reference Room. Personal flash drives may be used to store images of documents from Archives computers and microfilm readers. No software, images, or information may be loaded onto Archives computers.

Original historic documents or records from external sources may not be brought into the Reference Room.

Personal copiers/scanners are not permitted.

Lockers are available for storage of prohibited items. Please see the Lockers section for more details.

Publishing (Permission)

Permission to reproduce materials is not permission to publish. If Georgia Archives material will be used in a publication or on the Internet, permission to publish must be requested from the Georgia Archives by letter or email to


All researchers must show a valid, government issued photo i.d. and register before entering the research areas. (See Access for details). Registration is valid for 5 years.

Restrooms and Water Fountains

There are two sets of restrooms and water fountains on the first floor. One is located in the lobby near the Customer Service Desk and the second is across from the Security Desk.

Signing In/Signing Out

You will sign in for the day at the Security Desk before entering the Reference Room. You will need to sign out and present your research materials for inspection when you leave the Reference Room. In case of an emergency, this sign-in sheet allows us to be sure everyone is safely out of the building.


Smoking and use of all forms of tobacco products is not allowed on Georgia Archives property. Please see the [University System of Georgia Board of Regents Smoking Policy](

Staff Assistance

Staff are on duty in the Reference Room to help guide you to appropriate resources for your research, demonstrate how to use the equipment, and generally help you meet your research needs.