The Austin Files Biography collection includes photographs of persons who have lived in Austin and Central Texas.
The Austin Files House Building collection includes content cataloged by address or street name.
The Subject Files document many parts of life in Austin including our cityscape, schools, churches, libraries, cultural groups, natural resources, streets and highways, organizations, and social and cultural issues. They are organized by subject heading. A selection of photographs. audiovisual materials, and documents from our Subject Files is available through this website. Additional subjects, documents and other text materials, and more photos are available; please contact us for information. The Austin History Center collects and preserves historical records of all types documenting Austin's history from before its founding in 1839 to the present.
In March of 2020, to ensure that stories from the COVID-19 era were preserved, the Austin History Center began an initiative to collect materials from the public documenting life in Austin during the pandemic. AHC collected items through a digital submission form, though physical items were also added to the collection when AHC reopened following the strictest part of the City's pandemic shutdown. The call for submissions resulted in over 5,000 items collected from hundreds of donors, each giving a unique perspective of life in Austin during COVID-19. The COVID-19 Files includes records of local businesses responding to the crisis, new visual art, original written works, compiled public health information and statistics, social media posts, and extensive photographs and moving images, all documenting Austin's response to the pandemic.
The Austin History Center houses over 1,200 manuscript collections that contain the papers and records of City and County departments, local families, civic organizations, businesses, and institutions. These valuable primary research materials fill more than 3,000 linear feet of boxes. Detailed inventories for many of these collections are available to researchers in our Reading Room. Inventories of some collections can be found at Texas Archival Resources Online (TARO) https://legacy.lib.utexas.edu/taro/browse/browse_ahc1.html. Additionally, many of our collection guides can now be found on ArchivesSpace: https://ahc.access.lyrasistechnology.org/
The audiovisual collections at Austin History Center document many parts of life in Austin including our cityscape, schools, churches, libraries, cultural groups, natural resources, streets and highways, organizations, and social and cultural issues. Our collection also includes video recordings produced by government agencies and nonprofit groups to inform the public. In addition, the collection contains videos produced for pure entertainment by local individuals or groups. They are organized by subject heading or by their archival collection name and number. A selection of videos from our Austin Files and COVID-19 collections are available through this website. Additional audiovisual content is available; please contact us for information.
The Austin History Center has more than one thousand maps of Austin and Travis County from the mid-1800s to the present. These maps illustrate the City’s changing size and shape over the years and offer invaluable clues to the history of structures and landmarks long since gone from our landscape.
Digitized and born-digital collections cataloged with the Dewey Decimal Classification System. Materials include City of Austin records and reports, as well as, published works.