Reference Services

Reference staff members are here to help you explore, discover, and connect. Our general mission and purpose is to assist and instruct individuals in their pursuit of information, using appropriate methods and materials, regardless of format, and to “provide the most accurate information in the most timely manner possible.”  This assistance is provided in accordance with general library policies, and every effort is made to ensure that staff provide confidential, equal treatment to all persons. 

The rapidly changing technological environment requires us to learn new retrieval methods while retaining a useful familiarity with traditional sources. Although we may interpret some sources of information, we are not qualified to interpret legal, medical, or taxation materials.

Reference staff manage or oversee:

  • Research collections on the second floor of the library
  • Periodical reading room on the first floor
  • Historical periodicals and Kansas Room collections
  • Microform resources and pamphlet files
  • Government Documents Depository
  • Adult Education & Literacy program
  • Interlibrary Loan

For assistance you can reach us at the following:
Phone:  620-663-5441 ext. 137

Reference Computers

Computers are available upstairs by the Reference desk for non-entertainment purposes. Using these computers gives you more privacy and more time for you to do research, do job searching or fill out online forms, such as online enrollment in health insurance programs.

Interlibrary Loan

Hutchinson Public Library provides materials via Interlibrary Loan services for items that are not in our collection.  We will attempt to borrow items located within the lower 48 states.  Photocopies can be requested from libraries anywhere in the world following copyright compliance. Requests may take anywhere from 1 to 4 weeks to arrive, depending upon the location and availability of the item.

Patron requests can be made:

  • In-person at any of the services desks
  • Via email at 
  • Telephone (620-663-5441) ext 137

Library accounts need to be in good standing in order to check-out items from the library:

  • Persons who do not have a current Hutchinson Public Library card or an account in good standing will be allowed to order books for use only in the library under supervision.
  • Photocopies can be requested and supplied without a checkout process.

Requests are limited to 5 items per week:

  • Books of the same series are limited to 2 per week
  • DVD Collections are limited to 1 season per week per title.

What you need to know About InterLibrary Loan:

  • We cannot be held responsible for items that are held up by lending libraries.
  • We do not borrow items that we own except for approved book clubs.
  • Items must be at least 6 months old for books and 1 year for movies. Otherwise a Purchase Request will be submitted for our collection.
  • Borrowing a different format of an item we own is acceptable.
  • Items can be placed in the outside dropbox or brought into the building for return and MUST include the paperwork NO ADHESIVE (TAPE)
  • Patrons are responsible to pay for lost or damaged ILL items. The cost is determined by the lending library, not Hutchinson Public Library. The patron’s account will be charged accordingly.
  • ILL service may be suspended or removed for patrons who fail to comply with the policy.


Our Genealogy collection is located on the second floor of the library within the J.P. Harris Kansas Room. Patron assistance is provided by the Reference staff.

Requests for information, such as obituaries, directory assistance, and specific searches in local records, should be addressed to the Reference staff. 

We accept requests by mail, telephone (620-663-5441 x. 137) or e-mail ( 
Please include as much information as possible in each request, such as surnames, first names, middle names (if possible), and dates of birth or death.

You may also search the library catalog for abstracts of newspaper articles, births, marriages, and obituaries. The library subscribes to NewspaperArchive, Newsbank  and Ancestry Library Edition. Heritage Quest is available within the library, or it may be accessed from other locations using a current Kansas Library Card.

Government Documents

The Hutchinson Public Library is a Congressionally designated selective depository for U.S. Government Documents. Public access to the government documents collection is guaranteed by public law. (Title 44 United States Code)

The Hutchinson Public Library is a selective depository for federal, state, and local government documents. Whether you are researching Congressional reports, Supreme Court decisions, Kansas laws, election results, fiscal budgets, consumer information, or NASA projects, you will find helpful information in the documents collection.

Government documents are available throughout the library, although the bulk of our collection is located in our basement archives.  They provide many of the legal materials in Reference Services as well as various circulating materials located in adult and children’s non-fiction. We even have a small section in our new materials area.  Items located in the basement archives can be requested and retrieved by the Reference staff. Some items can be accessed online via our online library catalog or other designated links. Links to those resources are available on our eLibrary page.

Adult Education

Our Adult Education services include but are not limited to the following:

  • Improving your reading skills and comprehension
  • English as a second language assistance
  • Workplace skills improvement (keyboarding, practice tests, etc.)
  • GED resources
  • Computer literacy assistance

For further information or to get assistance please contact our Adult Education Coordinator.
Phone:  620-663-5441 x137


Please read before filling out the request form.

By filling out this form you are agreeing to the guidelines above.