• Harl V. Brackin Library

Harl V. Brackin Library

Library Hours

10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Monday - Friday
Except federal holidays

Library and research info




Library & Collections Notice:

The Library is in the process of rehousing and cataloging its extensive Manuals Collection. This collection includes aircraft, engine, accessory, and operation manuals. During the duration of the project, access to the Manuals Collection will be restricted. We anticipate the project to be completed in November 2016.


Please contact Head Librarian Meredith Lowe Prather at  mloweprather@museumofflight.org or 206-768-7160 if you have questions about the project.


This project was made possible in part by the Institute of Museum and Library Services, Museums for America Grant MA-31-14-0212-14. For more information about the Institute of Museum and Library Services or the Museums for America Grant, please visit IMLS at http://www.imls.gov/.



The Museum of Flight’s Harl V. Brackin Library is a popular and useful resource for researchers, aviation enthusiasts, students, model-makers, and authors. The Library contains thousands of books, magazines, and manuals, making it one of the most complete and readily-available aviation and space repositories in the country.  Library materials are for reference use and cannot be checked out, duplication equipment is available. 

Browse the Museum Library Catalog Online!

Highlights of the Brackin Library include:

  • The William E. Boeing, Sr. Library
  • Northrop Institute Library: Original library collection of  the Northrop Aeronautical Institute founded by Dr. John K. Northrop the founder of Northrop Aircraft Company and Dr. James L. McKinley aviation educator and author of aeronautical textbooks
  • NASA and NACA studies, reports, publications
  • The Clairmont L. Egtvedt Library
  • 25,000 Books and 60,000 Magazines all relating to aviation including complete runs of “Cross and Cockade” and “WWI Aero”
  • 4,000 Aircraft & Aircraft Accessory Manuals
  • Complete sets of “Jane’s All the Worlds Air Craft” and “The Aircraft Yearbook”
  • Rare publications include: James Means “The Aeronautical Annuals, 1895-1897”; Christopher Turnor’s 1864 “Astra Castra: Experiments and Adventures in the Atmosphere” and a complete set of Paul Brockett’s “Bibliography of Aeronautics”.
  • Aviation industry and corporate newsletters, house organs, and trade publications
  • 3,800 British Aviation Patents dating from 1815 to 1926 covering the design and development of balloons and aircraft; improvements and the design of propulsion and control devices and aerial navigation.
  • The Library maintains an Aeronautical Library Information system of over 300,000 references that provides access to many of the special information files created by the library.  Included are listings of over 80,000 aviation, an inventory of over 2,000 rare pamphlets, references to 14,000 scale aircraft drawings, and a listing of over 3,5000  biographical articles.

Access to the materials in the Brackin Library is via the Ready Research Desk in the Reading Room.