Local History Room

 Come see us during open hours!

 OPEN MONDAY-FRIDAY: 1pm-5pm    No appointment necessary.

If you would like to have your microfilm or research material waiting for you when you get here, please call ahead.

The Local History Room is located, on the second floor, within the Beale Memorial Library. The collection contains books, pamphlets, periodicals, newsletters, vault materials, and vertical files on over 900 subjects. The Local History room’s most popular items include Bakersfield City Directories dating back to 1899; Kern County Telephone directories dating back to 1940; and donated elementary, junior high, high school, and college yearbooks mainly from the 1960s and 1970s. Some primary sources in the collection go as far back as the 1800s.

Microfilm is also available in the Local History room to view newspapers not digitized, such as Shafter, Taft, Delano, and additional surrounding areas. Digitized access to the Bakersfield Californian for 1875-1977, limited issues of 2013-2017, The Shafter Press (1935-2014), and Shafter Progress (1929-1962) are available on Newspaper Archive. Microfilm is also available in the Local History Room for the Bakersfield Californian (1978-present), as well as other newspapers that have not yet been digitized, such as Taft, Delano, Ridgecrest, and additional surrounding areas.

The collection materials cannot be checked out and can only be used in the Local History Room.

Perfect for research of local history and events. • All ages welcome.

Visit our online collection:


Additional local history collections:

The Photographs of Carleton E. Watkins

Online Archive of California, featuring KCL Local History Photo Collection

Internet Archive: Digitized Audiovisual Collection

SJVLS Digital Collection, featuring Kern County 

SJVLS Digital Collection, featuring Clyde Johnson Photography

SJVLS Digital Collection, featuring Curtis Darling Postcard Collection

To make a research request, fill out the following forms:

Obituary Request        Article / Research Request

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