Learn about Hoboken.
The second floor of the Main Library holds the history collection, which includes an extensive assortment of books, photographs, printed material, and audio pieces related to Hoboken.
The collection is open to the public by appointment only. There is no charge, but you must call ahead to (201) 420-2347 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Hoboken Public Library Online History Collection
Browse city directories, old Hoboken newspapers, scrapbooks, maps, and oral histories at our online DigiFind-It portal.
The library’s history collection includes more than 600 books focused on the history of Hoboken as well as original documents such as council minutes from the early 1900s.
The library has a collection of over 1,000 black and white historical photos. In conjunction with the New Jersey Digital Highway Project, many of the historical photographs are now online. Go to NJDigitalHighway and choose the Hoboken Historical Photographs under collections in the Advanced Search to see our photographs.
Oral History Transcripts
The Oral History Project is a collaboration between the Friends of the Hoboken Public Library and the Hoboken Historical Museum to preserve memories of a variety of Hobokenites from all walks of life, including local business owners, a former mayor, and factory workers during the twentieth century. Browse transcripts in the Library and online.
Jersey City and Hoboken City Directories
Available on microfilm and online.
- Jersey Journal: May 2, 1867-December 30, 1950 | January 3, 1961-April 30, 1977
- New York Times (microfilm): Jan. 1, 1988–Oct. 10, 2005
- Hoboken Reporter (digital and microfilm): Sept. 21, 1983–Dec. 27, 1992; and digitized copies from 1995–2017
- Corporate Reporter/Modern Times (microfilm): Oct. 9, 1986–Nov. 9, 1989
- Hudson Review/Hudson Current (microfilm): April 19, 1990–Jan. 6, 1993
- Hoboken Advertiser (microfilm): Feb. 2, 1878–June 2, 1883
- Browse the Hoboken Advertiser online at this link.
- Hoboken Pictorial (microfilm): Jan. 8, 1960–Dec. 31, 1970
- Browse the Hoboken Pictorial online at this link.
Census On Microfilm
- New Jersey Federal Census: 1850, 1860, 1870, 1880, 1900, 1910, and 1920
- New Jersey State Census: 1885, 1895, and 1905
Newspaper clippings, flyers, pamphlets, and some photographs are collected on a variety of such topics such as churches, schools, and other community organizations. The vertical files have been digitized and can be viewed here.
This collection contains scrapbooks on microfilm and online on such topics as World War I, ships, and prohibition, as well as on the city of Hoboken from Nov. 1960–Dec. 1990.
Maps and Atlases
The Hoboken Public Library possesses a variety of historic maps and atlases, which may require staff assistance to view. The Sanborn Maps of New Jersey from 1906–1938 are also on microfilm and online.
The Hoboken Public Library owns a rich collection of books, photographs, CDs (available for check out with your library card), and vinyl and vertical files on Hoboken’s own iconic singer, actor, and producer, Frank Sinatra (December 12, 1915–May 14, 1998). Exclusive Sinatra photographs from the GRAMMY Museum at L.A. LIVE are on display at the Hoboken Public Library on the second floor.
Music by Local Artists
The Hoboken Public Library has an exclusive collection of CDs made by local artists, and recorded at Bar/None Records. These CDs are part of the History Collection and can be checked out with your library card.