The Museum library grows daily with photos, articles, stories and obituaries, becoming a valuable research facility for individuals to “get to know” their family members, find homesteads, places of work and areas of the county in which loved ones grew up or lived.

The Museum’s Readers Corner

Just as you enter the front door of the Museum, you will find our growing library of North Idaho history books.

Also you will find a bookcase filled with browsing books on local history compiled by Museum volunteers and staff.


The Archives and Research Room

We have established a research room and it is ready and waiting for anyone who is researching local family history, looking for a photo of the giant  sturgeon that used to roam the Kootenai River or just interested in learning more about local history.


The archives research room is a place of exploration. It is really great to see the place become a resourceful tool in our continued task of preserving Boundary County history.

Stop by and Chat

The Museum collection was begun in 1965 and presently houses over 50,000 artifacts.

The research and genealogical room is available for research needs; our staff and volunteers are happy to help with your research and genealogy questions/projects.

Due to limited volunteer staffing the amount of assistance may be severely limited, consider contacting us in advance and please provide as much detail as possible, including names, dates and locations pertinent to your research so that we can talk about the best time to stop by.

Please understand that much of our archival materials are housed in storage areas of the building and they are not immediately accessible.

Photograph Collection

The  photograph collection includes over 30,000 photographs; These are accessed through the computer system. Copies of photos may be obtained for a fee. Contact us for ordering information and fee schedules.


Boundary County Oral Histories

The society has collected hundreds of oral histories, they are recorded by regular folks, long time Boundary County residents covering a wide range of historical topics.

Newspaper Archives from The Kootenai Herald & The Bonners Ferry Herald & More

Recent News:

The Idaho State Historical Society working with the Library of Congress has digitized Boundary County newspapers published between 1891 and 1922. They are available and keyword searchable on the Chronicling America website.

The Museum has in the archives bound volumes and unbound copies of  the Kootenai and Bonners Ferry Herald, and the Bonners Ferry News, along with other individual issues of others, which are accessed by staff only.

Research Library

The archives’ extensive collection of published materials includes books, pamphlets, periodicals, newspaper clipping files, sheet music, maps and atlases related to Boundary County and North Idaho regional history, including a collection on Kootenai Tribal history.

The materials also include such varied pieces as catalogs from local businesses, high school yearbooks, and ephemera ranging from programs for sports and entertainment events to menus and invitations.

The library is always growing, books on the history of the area are being donated regularly. Museum staff and volunteers are also creating browsing books on a variety of subjects.

Histories of every day Boundary County families, industries, businesses, and buildings are just a few examples of the extensive material available in the research library.