Houston Public Library-Libraries
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Julia Ideson Building

550 McKinney
Houston, Texas 77002
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library hours
M 10-6 | T 10-6 | W 10-8 |Th 10-6 |F Closed | Sa 10-5 | Su Closed
room capacity
Please call 832-393-1662 to find out about meeting room capacity and availability.
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Upcoming Events:





Founding the Houston Public Library: Women's Clubs & Civic Activism at the Turn of the Twentieth Century

August 2 - November 1, 2014




Stories of a Workforce: Celebrating the Centennial of the Houston Ship Channel

September 2, 2014 - January 31, 2015



About the HMRC

The mission of the Houston Metropolitan Research Center (HMRC) is to locate, preserve, and make available to researchers the documentary evidence of Houston's history. HMRC is located in the historic Julia Ideson Building. Created in 1976, HMRC furthers its mission by providing in-depth reference services using materials including the Texas and local history book collection, archives, photographs, architectural drawings, oral histories, and maps. Librarians and Archivists are responsible for arranging, preserving, and indexing the contents of these unique collections.


For more about the Julia Ideson Building please visit the Julia Ideson Library Preservation Partners website.


For more on the The Houston Metropolitan Research Center, (HMRC) please visit the HMRC website.


HMRC is one of three units within Houston Public Library System's Special Collections Division-

  • The Clayton Library Center for Genealogical Research is the third-largest municipal genealogical research facility in the country. The Center was founded in 1921 in the Julia Ideson Building in downtown Houston with a special collection for genealogical research. In 1968, the collection was moved to the Clayton home at 5300 Caroline St. and renamed the Clayton Library.

  • The African American Library at the Gregory School, Houston’s first colored public school located in historic Freedmen’s Town, serves as a resource and repository to preserve, promote, and celebrate the rich history and culture of African Americans in Houston, the surrounding region and the African Diaspora.