California Historical Society

Bird's eye view of CA

Contact Information

CHS logo
678 Mission Street San Francisco, CA 94105
Alternate Contact

California Historical Society

California Historical Society
678 Mission Street
San Francisco, CA. 94105

Access and Management


Available to the public?
Available to outside researchers?
Reservations required?
Onsite technology available
Access procedures

Please note: The North Baker Research Library is currently closed while staff focus on some long-overdue collections maintenance. Please check our website for updates as well as to view our online exhibitions, and our Digital Library,

For further information, please email






Archive / Collection information

The California Historical Society collects materials of enduring historical and cultural value in support of its mission to inspire and empower Californians to make the past a meaningful part of their contemporary lives. In our North Baker Research Library, we hold some fifty thousand books and pamphlets, four thousand manuscript collections, half a million photographs, as well as ephemera, periodicals, posters, maps and more. For Los Angeles and the surrounding area we have nearly 23,000 photographs from the Title Insurance and Trust Company (TICOR) and the Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce (LAACC) housed and managed for CHS by the Regional History Center at the University of Southern California and viewable through the USC Digital Library ( Documenting development of the Los Angeles region from 1860 to 1960, the TICOR collection includes the work of many prominent local photographers, including C. C. Pierce. The LAACC collection includes promotional images in addition to depicting the growth of the city and the transportation system. Besides these two important collections and other photographs, Southern California is represented by printed books and pamphlets, maps, periodicals, and ephemera. 


The California Historical Society is a participant in the LAAS and ONE Archives Hidden Histories project.