Explore Indianapolis’s local Black history by browsing through these online portals, digitized newspapers and documents, photo galleries, artifact collections, images, documents, and more.

Digital Indy Archive

  • Crispus Attucks High School Year Books
    In 1927, Crispus Attucks High School opened its doors as Indianapolis’ first and only all-Black high school.
  • Black History, Indianapolis History
    Black history has a long presence in Indianapolis and makes up the very fabric of the city. Six years after the founding of Indianapolis, out of the 1,066 total residents 55 were African American (source). There is no history of Indianapolis without Indianapolis’ vibrant and diverse Black population.
  • Indianapolis Public Library African American History Committee
    Find information here about past AAHC events, lectures, and exhibits. View posters, programs, news items, and compilations of African American authors and illustrators.

Encyclopedia of Indianapolis

To learn even more about fascinating and inspiring black history makers, visit the Center for Black Literature & Culture at Central Library. The Center is dedicated to celebrating the vibrant and resilient heritage and triumphs of those born of African roots.

Local Black History – Indiana

Indiana Historical Bureau
Being Black in Indiana
Highlights the Ordinance of 1787, Article XIII of the Indiana Constitution of 1851, and 1816 Constitution and the impact on fleeing enslaved people and black settlers in the state of Indiana.

Indiana Historical Society
Early Black Settlements by County
Explore Early Black Settlements by County including the town of Bridgeport (Sunnyside or Westview), located in Wayne Township in Marion County.

Indiana Historical Society
Mark A. Lee LGBT Photo Collection
Explore the Indiana LGBTQ Collecting Initiative and Digital Image Collection containing various oral history interview excerpts and photographs featuring some of our local Indy African American residents.

Indiana Landmarks
Black Heritage Preservation Program: Combating Erasure of Black History with Eunice Trotter (Slide Presentation)

Indiana Memory Hosted Digital Collections
Urban Displacement and the Making of a University IUPUI (1964-1990)
“You will find correspondence related to property purchases, campus planning documents, assessments of home and business values, abstracts of title, oral histories, and a few items collected by administrators that show community discontent.”

Indiana University’s Portal to Professional Education
Indianapolis African American Heritage
This is a self-paced FREE online course. Credit: None. If you don’t have an IU account, create a free IU Guest account to enroll in the course. The course content is offered under a Public Domain.

Indiana Humanities
Drag Resistance and Worker Solidarity on Indiana Avenue
During the jazz era, Indiana Avenue became the epicenter of Black life for Indianapolis. Emerging research into this local history reveals a queer nightlife and culture moving through and amongst Indiana Avenue and Indianapolis’ Black community with visibility in the jazz clubs and city sidewalks just outside the clubs.

IUPUI ScholarWorks
The Female Impersonators of Indiana Avenue: Race, Sexuality, Gender Expression, and the Black Entertainment Industry (1911-1980s)

National Trust for Historic Preservation and Indiana Landmarks
Preserving Black Heritage in Indiana and Beyond with Tiffany Tolbert (Slide Presentation)

WRTV
Black History in Indiana

Stories of Black Hoosiers living and working in Central Indiana: Clip highlights Lockfield Gardens.

Local Black History – Indianapolis

African-American Hospitals and Health Care in Early Twentieth Century
Indianapolis, Indiana, 1894-1917 by Norma B. Erickson (2016): Study – Master Thesis: African American nurses, doctors, and images of African American hospitals (Ward’s, Lincoln, and Sisters of Charity) in Indianapolis.

Hoosier State Chronicles
Digitized African American Newspapers

Indianapolis at the Time of the Great Migration, 1900-1920
Originally published in August 1996 (No. 65) Black History News & Notes, a newsletter of the Indiana Historical Society. Highlights the movement of African Americans from the South to Indianapolis and the different infrastructure, job opportunities, residential segregation, and other inequalities they encountered once they arrived in the city.

Indy Parks
Pride of the Parks Honoring Black Culture Through Indy Parks
List of parks honoring Black Indianapolis residents, contributions, and culture through Indy Parks. View the Pride of the Parks brochure.

Indy Pride
2023 Black History Month LGBTQ+ Community Spotlight
Reflect on the contributions, challenges, and history of our Black and African American community members and celebrate the achievements of activists today who continue to lead, create, and envision a better future amidst the ongoing racism in our country.

Invisible Indianapolis
Race, Heritage and Community Memory in the Circle City
Explore a brief history of African American doctors and public health in Indianapolis during the 20th century.

A Neighborhood of Saturdays
Highlights African American and Jewish community history on the Indianapolis Southside, redlining and I-70.

calendar graphic

New Year’s resolutions- many of us love to make them but very few of us actually complete them. Perhaps it is because we set unrealistic goals or just lack follow through, or maybe it is because we set good intentions without knowing how we can actually achieve our goals and resolutions? This year, set yourself up for success by taking advantage of all the free resources your Indianapolis Public Library offers for a new year, new skills. If your goal is to master sourdough baking or perfect your knife skills, we have classes and books for that. Want to become a runner? We can help with that too! Want to learn a new language, discover a new craft, develop a reading habit, or learn to code? We can help you with all of those things as well. All you need is a resolution and your Library card!

Learn Computer Skills at the Library

We offer a variety of computer, technology, and mobile skill classes. You can also learn how to download and stream with your Library card and get a variety of tips and tricks on our blog at tech & mobile skills.

  • Event: Career Center at Garfield Park
  • Date & Time: Thursday, February 29, 10:30am
  • Location: Garfield Park Branch
  • Description: Adults and teens needing help with creating a resume, searching for a job or career online, or filling out an online job application are invited to receive free one-on-one assistance.
  • No Registration Required.
  • Event: Introduction to Microsoft Excel
  • Date & Time: Thursday, February 29, 10:30am
  • Location: Southport Branch
  • Description: Learn how to create spreadsheets with Microsoft Excel Online, the free online version of Excel. Join us for a three-part introduction to Excel Online. Level 1 – Layout, Navigation, and Files. Level 2 – Formula Basics and Formatting. Level 3 – Working with Data – Filter and Sort.
  • Register Here
  • Event: Career and Computer Help Center at Eagle
  • Date & Time: Thursday, February 29, 3:00pm
  • Location: Eagle Branch
  • Description: Do you need help with resume writing, job searching, or job applications? Or are you interested in learning new computer skills? Join us for this weekly drop-in program for one-on-one assistance.
  • No Registration Required.

Learn a New Craft or Hobby

We offer both free in-person classes and crafting activities and online tutorials through Creativebug. Learn everything from a new painting technique, how to use that Cricut you haven’t gotten out of the box yet, 3D printing, and so much more in the style you prefer!

  • Event: Paper Art Portraits
  • Date & Time: Friday, March 01, 4:00pm
  • Location: Haughville Branch
  • Description: Creating a family or friendship portrait is one of many ways to celebrate special people around us! Paper artist Shelley Hanmo will help you create a portrait using repurposed materials and simple paper cutting techniques to capture the unique characteristics of a special someone. Ages 5 and up.
  • Register Here
  • Event: Paper Art Portraits
  • Date & Time: Saturday, March 02, 2:00pm
  • Location: Michigan Road Branch
  • Description: Creating a family or friendship portrait is one of many ways to celebrate special people around us! Paper artist Shelley Hanmo will help you create a portrait using repurposed materials and simple paper cutting techniques to capture the unique characteristics of a special someone. Ages 5 and up.
  • Register Here

Level Up Your Reading, Listening, or Watching Game

Did you resolve to read more pages, explore audiobooks for the first time, watch a documentary a week, or explore a new genre in 2022? We can help you with all of your reading, watching, or listening resolutions. You don’t need a Spotify, Audible, or Amazon Prime subscription; all you need is your Library card! Looking for a reading challenge to start off the new year? Join our #WakeUpIndy challenge now!

Take an Online Course

Did you know that with your Library card, you have free access to Great Courses through Kanopy? The Great Courses cover Finance, Health, Hobbies, Food and Wine, History, Literature and Language, Math and Science, Music and Fine Arts, Philosophy, Professional and Personal Growth, Travel, Programs for Young Learners, and more. Start learning.

Learn a Language

¿Hablas español? Sprichst du Deutsch? If the answer to either of these questions is no but you would like to, try Mango Languages. Mango is a free language learning website that can also be used on a smartphone as an app. Learn or master a new language without having to pay for Duolingo! Get Started with Mango Languages

Start a Garden

Did you know that we have a seed library? From March-September, you can check out seeds from any seed library location and you don’t even have to return them or the wonderful plants you will grow. We also offer books, classes, and tips to help you develop a green thumb!

Start or Expand a Workout Routine

The most popular New Year’s Resolution is to start or grow an exercise routine. The Library might not be the first place you think about for physical fitness unless you think about lifting heavy books as weights, but did you know that we have hundreds of exercise classes available to check out on DVD or to stream online? We also have a Fit Lit Book Club, Tai Chi classes, and expert staff members who have compiled their favorite exercise information for you.

Cook Something

Explore new recipes, food or beverages from different cultures from around the world or a different region of the United States, check out a food magazine online or even take a plant-based cooking class.

Explore Your Genealogy

Whether you are a first-time family tree maker or an expert researcher, we can help you explore your family heritage through our numerous databases and services. Within our branches, you can access Ancestry Library Edition for free and from anywhere, you can access research databases, newspapers, or even a video course from Kanopy on how to get started learning about your background or Get Genealogy Classes & Research Help.

Get Organized

From Marie Kondo to the Flylady system, organization can take many shapes and forms depending on what your personal style is. Learn about these systems and more ways to clear the clutter for good by picking up one of our staff recommended reads on organization.

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Improve your digital creativity skills at The Library! Learn to edit photos, video, and audio, make a presentation look professional, find new ways to display your work, learn to use a 3D printer, and much more.

Digital Creativity Workstations

Looking to edit photos, video, audio, or make a new graphic design? Digital Creativity Workstations are available for reservation at Central Library and East 38th Street.

On these workstations you can practice the skills learned during a class, work on an existing project, or pursue self-paced learning with LinkedIn Learning or Adobe’s Built-in Tutorials. The workstations have specialized software to support multimedia projects including Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator, Vegas Pro Video Editor, and more!

A reservation is required.

Improve your skills in one of our classes!

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  • Event: Adobe Photoshop Basics
  • Date & Time: Tuesday, March 05, 5:30pm
  • Location: Central Library
  • Description: Get started editing images and photos. Discover how to transform images to match your artistic vision. Explore the basic tools you will need and gain hands-on experience.
  • Register Here
  • Event: 3D Printing at Central Library
  • Date & Time: Monday, March 18, 6:00pm
  • Location: Central Library
  • Description: Adults ages 18 and up are invited to learn the basics of 3D printing from concept to creation using Tinkercad, the S5 Ultimaker, and other 3D printers.
  • No Registration Required.
  • Event: Exploring Canva
  • Date & Time: Friday, March 29, 2:30pm
  • Location: Garfield Park Branch
  • Description: Learn how to use the free online graphic design tool Canva. Create a custom digital design for greeting cards, business cards, flyers, and more. Share your designs online or by printing them.
  • Register Here
  • Event: 3D Printing at Central Library
  • Date & Time: Monday, April 29, 6:00pm
  • Location: Central Library
  • Description: Adults ages 18 and up are invited to learn the basics of 3D printing from concept to creation using Tinkercad, the S5 Ultimaker, and other 3D printers.
  • No Registration Required.
  • Event: 3D Printing at Central Library
  • Date & Time: Monday, May 20, 6:00pm
  • Location: Central Library
  • Description: Adults ages 18 and up are invited to learn the basics of 3D printing from concept to creation using Tinkercad, the S5 Ultimaker, and other 3D printers.
  • No Registration Required.

Adobe Creative Cloud

Bring your creative projects to life with the help of Adobe Creative Cloud, an innovative provider of 20+ creative apps, web services, and resources in photography, UX design, drawing, social media, painting, graphic design, video editing and more, brought to you with newly enhanced AI features.

Title - Photoshop Elements 2022Title - Photoshop ElementsTitle - Adobe Photoshop Lightroom Classic for DummiesTitle - Adobe Photoshop Lightroom Classic

Getting started with a Cricut Machine

Cricut machines can cut, write, and score, making it possible to create a wide variety of projects out of all kinds of materials. Learn how to use your machine to its full potential and try out some of these suggested projects!

Title - The Unofficial Book of Cricut CraftsTitle - Cricut for BeginnersTitle - Cricut for BeginnersTitle - Cutting Machine Crafts With your Cricut, Sizzix, or Silhouette

Build your digital life skills with IndyPL this Digital Inclusion Week. The digital divide is the gap between those who have affordable access, skills, and support to effectively engage online, and those who do not. This divide impacts households in Indianapolis. The Library helps bridge the gap with free public computers and wifi, free computer skill training, and helpful staff to support those still developing their digital life skills.

Every year Digital Inclusion Week is a time for raising awareness, advocating for digital equity, and promoting the many resources available to help people take advantage of digital technology. Digital Inclusion Week for 2023 is October 2 – 6. We hope you’ll join us this year as we celebrate by building our digital life skills.

Read on for suggested activities you can complete to develop your own digital skills or help you take action to support digital equity in Indianapolis. Learn more about all the services The Library offers to help get you connected to the Internet. Use our computers and other technologies, both in our locations and at home. Our services are available every week, all year long.

1. Develop Your Digital Skills at The Library

You can take computer and technology classes to build your digital life skills at The Library throughout the year. Build your digital skills with a learning plan custom designed for you.

Take an assessment in English or Spanish on The Library’s Northstar Digital Literacy platform and get feedback with a learning plan tailored to the skills you need most. Assessments offered include: Basic Computer Skills, Internet Basics, Using Email, Windows 10, Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel, Microsoft PowerPoint, Google Docs, Information Literacy, Career Search Skills, and Your Digital Footprint. Register for an at-home assessment to complete online or attend an in-person class. See the Tech Learning Lab’s complete program schedule. Once you have a learning plan, you can work at your own pace to tackle online lessons to develop the digital life sklll you need most. Browse our complete listing of computer and technology classes:

  • Event: Career Center at Garfield Park
  • Date & Time: Thursday, February 29, 10:30am
  • Location: Garfield Park Branch
  • Description: Adults and teens needing help with creating a resume, searching for a job or career online, or filling out an online job application are invited to receive free one-on-one assistance.
  • No Registration Required.
  • Event: Introduction to Microsoft Excel
  • Date & Time: Thursday, February 29, 10:30am
  • Location: Southport Branch
  • Description: Learn how to create spreadsheets with Microsoft Excel Online, the free online version of Excel. Join us for a three-part introduction to Excel Online. Level 1 – Layout, Navigation, and Files. Level 2 – Formula Basics and Formatting. Level 3 – Working with Data – Filter and Sort.
  • Register Here
  • Event: Career and Computer Help Center at Eagle
  • Date & Time: Thursday, February 29, 3:00pm
  • Location: Eagle Branch
  • Description: Do you need help with resume writing, job searching, or job applications? Or are you interested in learning new computer skills? Join us for this weekly drop-in program for one-on-one assistance.
  • No Registration Required.

2. Find affordable device access in your neighborhood.

You can also use your Library card to check out a Chromebook laptop and a device called a hotspot to connect to the Internet for free. A WiFi hotspot provides a link to the Internet from anyplace you plug it in! Borrow a hotspot or Chromebook from one of our 12 locations that currently lend them. Availability for these devices is during regular branch hours. The Chromebooks and Hot Spots are not-requestable, or renewable, but are available for check out first come, first serve.

3. Have internet but suspect it isn’t reliable? Can’t get broadband to your home? Share your experience.

Indiana’s State Broadband Office is helping Hoosiers use their voice when it comes to their unreliable or absent broadband connectivity. Visit this website that allows users to test internet speed and answer questions regarding their connectivity.

4. Help map the solutions to the digital devide in your neighborhood.

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Explore Indiana’s Digital Equity Map to find resources in your community. Have a resource you want to share? Submit your community digital inclusion resource to help support the states first Digital Equity Plan.

Need help? Ask a Library staff member at any of our locations or call, text or email Ask-a-Librarian.

Learn more about some of our most frequently asked questions about voting and elections. For more information visit the Indiana State Government Voter Information Portal. Or visit the Marion County Voter Portal for local information.

Remember to bring ID

You must have your valid photo ID issued by the state of Indiana or the federal government with you. The Supreme Court upheld the requirement of an Indiana State ID to vote. Public Law 109-2005 requires Indiana residents to present a government-issued photo ID.

This law requires your photo ID to meet four criteria to be acceptable for voting purposes. See the four requirements your photo ID must include.

Where can I get an ID?

VoteRiders provides 100% free voter assistance. Get help:

  • obtaining documents (birth certificates, change of name records, etc.)
  • arranging rides to and from ID–issuing offices
  • providing copies of ID for those eligible to vote by mail

Contact by phone 844-338-8743.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why should I vote?

The National Geographic Society provides good information on why it is important that everyone exercise their right to vote

What are my rights as a voter?

The Indiana Voters Bill of Rights available in English and Spanish.

Where is my polling place?

Find out where to vote by choosing “Find Your Polling Place” on the Voter Information Portal.

How can I turn in my registration form?

Registration forms may be mailed to or dropped off at the Marion County Board of Voter Registration. According to the Indiana Secretary of State’s Election Division “[To] vote in a primary or general election, you must register at least twenty-nine (29) days before that election. A mail-in voter registration application must be postmarked at least twenty-nine (29) days in advance of that election.”

Can I (avoid long waits and) vote early?

All registered Indiana voters are eligible to vote early in-person. See more information on how to vote early in Indiana.

What if I can’t vote on Election Day?

For people who cannot travel to their polling place on Election Day, an absentee ballot can be used. To see if you are eligible to vote absentee, or to download an online application, go to the Marion County Election Voter Information Portal Absentee Forms. Also, you may call the Election Board at 317-327-8683 to have a form mailed to you. Early voters, military and overseas voters, and a travelling board for sick, injured or disabled voters and their caregivers may all be eligible for absentee voting.

What if I need a ride to my polling place to vote?

The Marion County Democratic, Libertarian, and Republican parties provide transportation to the polls to residents of Marion County. When calling, give your name, address, and telephone number.

Libertarian Party of Marion County
2825 East 56th Street
Indianapolis, IN 46220 (317) 643-5725

Marion County Democratic Party
114 West St. Clair Street
Indianapolis, IN 46204 (317) 637-3366

Marion County Republican Party
101 West Ohio Street Suite 2200
Indianapolis, IN 46204 (317) 964-5050

Who are the candidates running for office?

To find a list of candidates on the ballot that you will be voting for, you can access them at the Voter Information Portal. Click on the yellow icon “Who’s on the Ballot?” You will need to put in your name and your birthdate as well as the county where you are registered to vote. You will find a list of the candidates who currently on the ballot.

Where can I find information about the candidates?

To find out more about each candidate you can easily find them online by searching their names on Google. Remember to consider who is providing the information on any site about a candidate and consider if the site may be biased. One reliable site is called Ballot Ready presented by the National Science Foundation, the Knight Foundation, and the University of Chicago Institute of Politics.

Where can I find the facts I find?

There are several good sites for fact checking – two easy-to-use options are Fact Check and Politifact. Another interesting one is NewsGuard, which works as a Chrome browser extension.

I am a college student, what should I know about voting?

The Student Voting Guide specifically helps students better understand how to vote.

What is the Electoral College and how does it work?

For an explanation of how the college works, including statistics and historical counts, visit the National Archives and Records Administration.

How can I find out who my current government representatives are?

Your current elected officials can be accessed at the Voter Information Portal. You can click on the yellow icon “Find Elected Officials” to pull up a map and enter your address. Then you can choose Federal, State, County, Township, or school officials.

You can also view maps of your districts at Indiana Election Division – Statistics and Maps. If you have questions about your districts, you can call the Marion County Board of Voter Registrationat 317-327-5042.

Where can I find election results?

Official Marion County election results are available from the Voter Information Portal. Click on “Election Night Results” or on “Historical Election Results.”. Official results from current and past elections throughout the state of Indiana are provided by the Election Division of the Indiana Secretary of State’s office.

The Clerk of the U.S. House of Representatives also provides Election Statistics from 1920 to 2014.

Reading Recommendations from IndyPL Staff

Title - Vote for Me!Title - Monster Needs your VoteTitle - One Vote, Two Votes, I Vote, You VoteTitle - Vote for Me!

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The IndyPL Seed Library

Did you know we provide free seeds for check-out? The IndyPL Seed Library is available at many of our locations during regular branch hours from late March through September. Use your library card to start your vegetable, herb, or even flower garden for free! New to gardening? We provide materials and programs to make gardening in Indianapolis a doable goal for beginners.

Programs

Gloved hands planting a garden.
  • Event: Homeschool at the Library
  • Date & Time: Wednesday, March 13, 1:00pm
  • Location: Spades Park Branch
  • Description: There is a lot to consider when planning a garden: What will you grow? Where will you grow it? When should you start? Learn about how to grow your own food, how to plan your garden, and start your own container plant! This program is designed for homeschooling families, but all are welcome.
  • Register Here
  • Event: West Perry Gardening Group
  • Date & Time: Friday, March 15, 10:15am
  • Location: West Perry Branch
  • Description: Gardens are essentially a place of sharing and gardeners know that we learn a lot from each other–whether you’re just starting or experienced. Sessions will feature seasonal discussions with a local Master Gardener, resources–like our Seed Library–and connections with other gardeners.
  • No Registration Required.
  • Event: Spring Festival at Wayne
  • Date & Time: Monday, March 18, 2:45pm
  • Location: Wayne Branch
  • Description: Come for a variety of spring-themed activities. There will be stories, crafts, games, and prizes for all. You’ll even get your own zinnia plant to take home!
  • No Registration Required.

View on Demand

Learn on Demand Video: Seed Saving
Join Anika Williams from the Pike Branch of The Indianapolis Public Library as she harvests milkweed seeds on site and discusses the Seed Library available there.

Reading Recommendations from our Staff

Browse these featured staff book lists to help improve your gardening in Indianapolis skills. See all our gardening book lists here.

Gardening in Indianapolis Resources

Follow Purdue Extension, one of the best ways to learn about gardening in Indiana. Browse their recommended online resources:

Gardening for Kids

Subscribe to NextReads to receive Home, Garden & DIY reading recommendation in your inbox monthly. Book suggestions are linked to our catalog for easy requesting. It’s FREE! See a sample issue. Subscribe to NextReads!

All smartphones and tablets have a set amount of storage space built into them. For some devices the amount can increase, but even when that is possible, there are limits to how much storage space you can add. The amount of storage space your device has controls how many apps and files you can store on it at once. Whether your device has a small amount of smartphone storage space or you just tend to keep a large quantity of files or apps in your storage, it is important to know how much free space you have left.

Why this Skill is Important

Knowing how much free storage space you have left can help you make the best decisions about using your device. Try to avoid situations where you want to install new apps or save new files, but can’t because you don’t have enough free space to hold everything you need. Those situations can lead to making quick decisions about what files or apps to delete in order to make space. Learning to monitor your storage space can help you avoid those kinds of rushed, possibly regrettable decisions.

How to Tell What Takes Up the Most Smartphone Storage Space

Units specific to computer memory are used to measure the storage space on tablets and smartphones. The most common units you will see in reference to your device’s storage space are KilobytesMegabytes, and Gigabytes; usually they are abbreviated to KBMB, and GB.

  • Of these 3 units, a Kilobyte (KB) is the smallest unit.
  • Megabytes (MB) are larger than KB and smaller than GB; 1 MB is equal to 1,024 KB.
  • Gigabytes (GB) are the largest units out of the 3; 1 GB is equal to 1,024 MB.

When trying to decide what files or apps to remove from your device to regain storage space, remember that something that takes up GBs of space is much larger than something that only takes up KBs or MBs of space.

Android

Check your device to see how storage space use. Start by opening your Settings section. Often you can access Settings by swiping down from the top of the screen and tapping an icon shaped like a gear. Usually, you can also find a Settings app with the other app icons on your screen. Storage or Internal Storage is the area you need to view. You may need to check under the Device or General headings to find it. You may also be able to use a search bar to easily locate this area by searching for “storage.”

Most Android devices will show you a “progress bar” style graphic or pie chart that shows you visually how storage space use, broken down into various categories such as Apps, Images or Pictures, Video, Audio, and Downloads, with their corresponding amounts of used storage space. Once you know more about what is taking up your storage space, you can make informed choices about what to delete. Many Android devices will make recommendations about what actions you can take to free up storage space. Depending on your device, you may need to locate the list of all installed apps in Settings in order to uninstall whole apps or clear away some of their data. Remove other things like photos, documents, and audio files by opening whichever app you use to view those types of files.

For more help freeing up space on your Android device, check out this guide from Google.

You may be able to gain some extra space by using a microSD card with your Android device. A microSD card is a small, physical piece of storage. It is inserted into a slot on many Android devices. Devices with a microSD card slot can use microSD cards as portable, removable storage for many types of files such as photos. Many devices can also use microSD cards as internal storage. Be sure to check what options will be compatible with your Android device before purchasing a microSD card!

iPhone

iPhones do not have expandable internal storage. This is one of the major differences between iPhones and Android smartphones.

To learn more about your iPhone’s storage space use, open Settings, then tap General, and finally, tap iPhone Storage. This screen will show you a chart of your total storage space used, broken down by category. If you are near your storage limit, your iPhone will have recommendations for actions you could take to increase your available storage space.

Below the chart, you will see a list of apps showing the total amount of storage each one is using. Tapping on each app in this list will show you the options for managing that app’s storage space. Some apps may have specific, storage-saving recommendations. Apps that can be deleted give you the option to offload the app or delete it. Offloading removes the app from your device’s storage, but keeps any data the app may be storing. This means that if you install the offloaded app again in the future, your phone will still be able to access any personalized information that the app has created. If you are often out of smartphone storage space offload infrequently used apps in order to free up space.

For more help managing your iPhone’s storage, check out this guide from Apple.

Smartphone Basics

Use the recommended titles here to explore the features of your smartphone. Whether you have an Android or an iPhone, these recent books can help you learn to make your device work best for you! Many of the skills and topics covered here would also apply to Android tablets and iPads.

Title - AndroidTitle - IPhoneTitle - Android Phones for SeniorsTitle - IPhone for SeniorsTitle - How Are Smartphones Made and Sold?Title - Samsung Galaxy S20 for DummiesTitle - Samsung Galaxy S10Title - Samsung Galaxy S9

The hardest thing in the world to understand is the income tax. ~ Albert Einstein. It’s time to file your taxes! Many Library patrons rely on IndyPL for tax forms and filing instruction booklets.

In order to encourage more tax payers to file electronically, both the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and the Indiana State Department of Revenue (DOR) are limiting distribution of paper forms and instructions. Here is what to expect if you come into a Library for tax documents.

  • We have preprinted packets of the most common tax forms and schedule forms for free to patrons – first come, first served and only one packet per patron. (Download PDF Packet)
  • You may use a Library computer to view tax instructions and booklets online, or you can print them on our printers. The first four black-and-white pages printed are free. Each page printed after that will be $0.15 per black-and-white page.
  • We offer a limited number of Federal 1040 and Indiana IT-40 booklets at some branch locations.
  • Library staff cannot help you select or fill out your tax forms.
  • See our Frequently Asked Questions below for more information.

Links to printable tax forms online or by phone:

Tax preparation help:

  • The East 38th St. Branch will serve as a Volunteer Tax Assistance Program location by appointment in February through the middle of April. Please call 317-275-4352 for more information beginning January 16.
  • Garfield Park Tax Resources
    Friday, March 15 at 2:30 pm Register
    Friday, April 12 at 2:30 p.m. Register
    Come find out how to locate, print, and find resources to help prepare you to fill out your taxes. Plus, learn how to tell which websites are official government sites and which are not.
  • File Federal Taxes Free Online (if income under $79,000)
  • United Way provides MyFreeTaxes.com in partnership with the IRS’s Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program to help filers prepare their tax returns on their own or have their return prepared for them for free. You can also call MyFreeTaxes at 866-698-9435 Jan. 24 – Oct. 31.

FAQ Filing Taxes

How do I print documents at The Library?

You can print from indypl.org/printing using the URL of a file, or by uploading a file from your device. You can also easily print from Library computers, or ask a staff member for help.

Can I get free help filing my taxes?

Library staff cannot help fill out forms, but here are some links to local organizations that can help:

See our booklist for suggestions for learning more about filing income taxes.

Where can I find IRA Information?

Do you have a Roth or a Traditional Individual Retirement Account (IRA)? Use these links to find the latest information on contribution limits and withdrawals.

Automated resume readers often “read” your resume before a real person ever does. If not properly formatted your resume may never be viewed by a person at all. This is because most employers use a tool called an Applicant Tracking System or “ATS,” which helps them to automatically decide whether or not someone is qualified for a job opening. While automated resume readers make things easier for employers, these systems can make getting hired much harder! These systems do not rely on the quality of your resume, but instead cares more about your word choice and the formatting of the resume document. This means that you can have a high quality resume, but if the system does not like your formatting, you are less likely to be called for an interview. Luckily, there are some things you can do to help your resume survive ATS!

Solution: Formatting

One of the most important considerations is your resume’s formatting— what it looks like and what kind of layout you are using. There are many resume templates out there that look great, but they break a lot of the rules that automated resume readers use to “read” your document. Here are some tips about what to avoid and what you should do when it comes to formatting your resume:

What to Include:

  • Use standard section heading words. Most resumes are organized with section headings like Skills, Work Experience, Education, and more. It may be tempting to get creative with your section headings, but it is not a good idea. For example, if you label your Education section as “My Adventures in Learning,” you are increasing the chances that the ATS will not understand that this section is about your education and it could leave all of those qualifications out of your application.
  • When describing your work experience, always list your job title before you list the dates you worked in that job. You should develop a consistent pattern: list your job title, then the company where you worked, and lastly, the dates that you held the job.
  • Stick to using one “normal,” font that is easy to read like Arial, Tahoma, or Verdana. Do not use “fun” or “fancy” fonts for a resume. Do not mix different fonts together on one resume.
  • Use simple bullet points for any bulleted lists. Microsoft Word allows you to customize bullet points, but using nonstandard symbols in place of simple dots or squares increases the chances that the ATS will not read the list correctly.

What to Avoid

  • Avoid using columns or tables. If you use a template, make sure the template is not based on a table. How can you tell if your template contains a table? Tables make moving elements and adding text in a resume difficult. If your resume is hard to change, it might incorporate a table. If your resume is a Microsoft Word document, you can click in your resume text and if you see a Table Tools section appear at the top of the ribbon, your resume contains a table.
  • Avoid using special characters and symbols. Don’t use things like #, &, or ! . Don’t insert other symbols from Microsoft Word’s Symbol menu or create lines to divide your resume’s sections.
  • Do not use any pictures or graphics; not even tiny ones.
  • Do not use headers or footers in your document. Not all ATS systems can read them correctly, so placing important info in those spots is a bad idea.

Solution: Keywords

Another important thing to think about are keywords. Automated resume readers heavily use keywords to decide which resumes are good matches for job postings, so you need to match the words in your resume to the most important words used in the job description. Read the job description to decide what the most important words are and try to figure out how you can use those same words to describe your work experience and skills. How do you decide which words are these important keywords? Often, keywords are the required skills that are repeated the most in the job description.

You are trying to prove to a robot that you are the best match for the job opening, so you need to use a lot of the same words to describe yourself that the employer uses to describe the job. Here are some tips for using keywords:

  • If you have a professional title, be sure to include it on your resume on the line underneath your name. This is especially important if your title matches the job description.
  • Use important keywords multiple times across multiple sections of your resume. Try to place them into your job descriptions as well as your list of skills.
  • Use keywords in context and make sure that you are accurately describing your work by using the employer’s words.

This system means that you really should customize your resume for each job application. Of course, this can take a lot of time, but it gives you a better chance at getting the job than using the same resume for every opening.

Important Tips

  • Upload your resume in an ATS compatible file format! Most applications will ask you to use specific file formats. Do not use PDF unless it is the only option the application gives you because ATS often has trouble reading PDF files. Microsoft Word documents (.doc or .docx) are a good choice.
  • Apply to open jobs as soon as possible! It is important to apply to job postings as soon as you can, rather than waiting for the deadline. Sometimes ATS will ignore applications if there is a limit to how many people can apply. So you might be able to complete an application, but if the applicant pool is already filled up, you may not be considered.
  • Use tools to help you beat the system! Jobscan.com will tell you how well your resume matches the job description of the job you want. Word cloud generators, like WordClouds.com, can help you identify the most frequently repeated words in a job posting. Copy and paste the job description into the generator and look for the largest words.

Resume Tune-Up Books to Check Out with your Library Card

Looking for help creating a new—or strengthening an existing—resume? This list highlights a variety of resume writing resources that can help you communicate who you are and what you have to offer. It also includes an invitation to sign up for an online appointment with an IndyPL Career Center Assistant.

Title - ResumesTitle - The Perfect ResumeTitle - Modernize your ResumeTitle - Before and After ResumesTitle - Tell Me About YourselfTitle - 1,001 Phrases You Need to Get A JobTitle - Cracking the New Job MarketTitle - How to Write the Perfect Federal Job Résumé & Résumé Cover Letter

Phone and tablet devices connect to the Internet almost anywhere through cellular data or nearby Wi-Fi. What’s the difference between cellular data and Wi-Fi? Mobile phone services provide cellular data through their data plans. You can access the internet anywhere there is a phone signal using cellular data. Wi-Fi connects wirelessly to the internet based on a device’s location. A device can connect to Wi-Fi at home or in public places like libraries, stores, or restaurants.

Why is knowing the differences between Wi-Fi and mobile cellular data important?

Tasks like downloading new apps, sending/receiving email, or making video calls require access to the internet.

Many cellular data plans only give a certain amount of cellular data per month. Additionally, plans may charge extra for exceeding the plan’s cellular data limit.

In contrast, while connected to Wi-Fi you can use the Internet as much as you want without using any of the mobile data included in your plan.

Knowing when to use both kinds of connections and how to switch between them can save money. It is also good to know that options in “Settings” show how much monthly cellular data has been used.

Wi-Fi

Generally, an icon at the top of the screen indicates whether your device’s Wi-Fi is turned on or off. The image on the right is a commonly used Wi-Fi symbol.

Open Settings to adjust your device’s Wi-Fi connections. From the list of potential options, choose which Wi-Fi network to connect to. You will need to enter a password to connect to a locked Wi-Fi network. You do not need to enter a password to enter an unlocked Wi-Fi network.

Manually connect to Wi-Fi networks the first time you use them. Later, if you are near a Wi-Fi network you have used in the past, your device may automatically connect to it.

Use Wi-Fi rather than mobile cellular data for tasks like downloading apps and streaming video/audio. Doing this will help you use less of your mobile cellular data each month.

Mobile Cellular Data

Access mobile cellular data controls from “Settings.” Turn cellular data on and off by flipping a switch button between these two choices.

Your device will be unable to connect to the internet if you are not connected to Wi-Fi and your cellular data is off. Turn mobile cellular data back on to use the internet when you are out of range of Wi-Fi.

Mobile cellular data can be used to create a “hotspot” that other devices, such as laptops, can use to connect to the internet. Access this option from “Settings.” Some mobile cellular data providers charge more for this option. Remember that using your mobile cellular data as a hotspot access point for other devices counts toward your monthly cellular data usage!

Android

On an Android device, adjust Wi-Fi and mobile cellular data controls from “Settings.” Different brands of Android devices organize these controls in different ways. You may see options for Wi-Fi or cellular data right away once you open “Settings,” but if not, look under a category like “Network and Internet” or “Connections.”

To quickly adjust Wi-Fi controls, swipe down from the top of the screen.

For more help and tips, check out these support topics from Google.

Apple

Adjust Wi-Fi and mobile cellular data controls from “Settings.” Tap Wi-Fi or Cellular to make changes to either option.

To quickly adjust Wi-Fi controls on an iPhone, swipe up from the bottom of the screen.

Adjust your Wi-Fi controls on an iPad by swiping down from the top-right edge of the screen.

For more help with Wi-Fi, check out these instructions from Apple.

For more help with mobile cellular data, check out these instructions from Apple.

Want to learn more? See our listing of online classes to level up your tech and mobile skills.

As a virtual volunteer you can identify new solar systems, watch and report on owl nesting activity, translate for refugees, put the world’s vulnerable people on the map, or transcribe oral history of the Grand Canyon! Each of these and hundreds more volunteer opportunities are ways you can support a cause virtually. In short, you can volunteer virtually, using a smartphone, tablet, or computer, for as little or as much time as you would like. Becoming a virtual volunteer is easy! Here’s how!

Looking for Local Opportunities to Volunteer Virtually?

Volunteer Opportunities from All Over:

  • Be a Citizen Scientist! Visit Zooniverse to discover projects organized by interest area: arts, biology, climate, history, language, literature, medicine, nature, physics and social science. Activities range from quick counting tasks, like counting how many sea lions you see in a picture, identifying kelp forests, or more in-depth activities like transcribing documents such as anti-slavery manuscripts from the 19th century or translating Hebrew or Arabic documents from the middle ages. Projects change as they are completed and added. Learn how to satisfy academic community service with Zooniverse here.
  • Share Career Advice! CareerVillage is a community where students can get free personalized career advice from real-life professionals. Answer questions about education and career choices from students from around the world. Signup is quick and easy. Pop on when you have time to quickly answer questions posted through the Career Village webpage.
  • Help Map Underserved Areas on Missingmaps.org. Help map areas where humanitarian organizations are trying to meet the needs of vulnerable people. In three easy steps, you can provide information for disaster relief organizations.

Didn’t find what interests you? Check out these resources for more ideas:

  • VolunteerMatch.org Search over thousands of virtual volunteer opportunities. Find the one that sparks your interest.
  • Catchafire.org Use your professional skills to make an impact on a mission driven organization – one hour call or full-length projects.
  • Project Gutenberg Proofread public domain books page-by-page to have them converted to digital format.
  • Grandcanyonhitory.org Transcribe oral history of people living and working in and around the Grand Canyon.
  • Oldweather.org Document old weather patterns from the 1880’s ship logs to predict future climate.
  • Tarjim.ly Provide on-demand language translation for refugees in need of humanitarian assistance.
  • Learningally.org Create audiobooks for students with learning differences and college students who are blind or visually impaired.

A note about community service hours:

If you need proof of service for school, court, or service organization, virtual volunteering may not be the best option. Check with the opportunity organizer to verify that they can confirm your hours.

Whatever you choose, know that you are supporting the efforts of an organization to move their mission forward. For that, thank you!

Would you like to learn about more volunteering opportunities?

If you are interested in learning more about volunteer opportunities for you or a group, please contact us or call the Library’s Volunteer Resources Office at 317-275-4046. Learn more about volunteering opportunities at The Library.

learn coding skills at The Library

CompTIA’s Cyberstates Report shows that tech employment in Indianapolis is growing. Many of those jobs require some coding skills or technical skill training. There are a wealth of resources available to help you learn to code or start to transition into a tech career. So many that it can often feel overwhelming to know where to start! Here are some of our favorite library resources, free online resources, and community organizations that can help you take a first step into developing new coding and tech skills. Join The Library’s coding and tech focused community page on Meetup.com.

What is coding?

Coding or, computer programming, is communicating with computers by creating a set of instructions for the computer to follow. Code can be used in many different ways: making websites and smartphone apps, analyzing information or data for businesses, building software for computers, to control robots, or even automating simple, repetitive tasks on a computer such as filling in forms or sending email reminders. Technology shapes the world around us. Learning to code can help you control that technology and create new uses for it.

Why should you learn to code?

If you are exploring new career options, want a new creative hobby, or just want to understand how the technology around you works – you should consider learning to code! Learning to code will help you be a more informed computer user and provide you with interesting options for solving tech-based problems. If you enjoy creating, then coding opens new digital creativity pathways for art, music, and more. For those seeking a new career, coding and tech skills can lead to high-demand career paths with good income potential – both in the tech industry and in other industries that require workers to operate in a tech-rich workplace.

Programs

  • Event: Warren Team STEAM
  • Date & Time: Saturday, March 09, 10:30am
  • Location: Warren Branch
  • Description: School-age children ages 6 – 12 are invited to engage in a variety of STEAM activities. Try out games, coding, art projects, and more. Participants will have a chance to get hands-on experience with various areas of science and technology while boosting their creativity.
  • No Registration Required.

Favorite Free, Online Resources

  • LinkedIn Learning
  • Learn relevant, professional skills on LinkedIn Learning. Your library card gives you free unlimited access to more than 16,000 courses in 7 different languages: English, French, German Japanese, Spanish, Mandarin, and Portuguese. Learn how here.
  • Jobs in Tech 101 from TechPoint
  • Explore the Indy tech workforce with this website designed to help demystify what a “tech job” is and what companies are “tech companies.” See day-in-the-life interviews with local tech professionals who work in sales, customer support, product development, and more.
  • Get Certification from FreeCodeCamp
  • FreeCodeCamp offers free lessons and certification on in-demand skills and languages including Web Design, Front and Back End Web Development, Python, Data Analysis, and Machine Learning.
  • Not Certain What Language is RIght for You? Try This Quiz
  • Quiz results include information about a language and information about what types of companies and jobs use the language.
  • Mozilla’s Web Developer Tutorial
  • Mozilla offers tutorials to help at multiple skills levels from complete beginner to building a basic web project or browser extensions.
  • Learn How to Code with CodeCademy
  • Codecademy has several free lesson sets. This is a great resource for complete beginners to coding.
  • SQL Murder Mystery
  • Learn the basics of SQL, a database query language, while solving a puzzle. This lesson is a fun mix of a playful murder mystery and a solid introduction to basic SQL knowedge.

Get Involved – Organizations in and around Indy

Connect with the community-based organizations who help support adults who are transitioning into a Tech Career

Learn how to use coding languages such as HTML, CSS, and JavaScript to build a basic website with code.

Title - HTML in Easy StepsTitle - HTML & CSSTitle - Create With CodeTitle - Web Design Playground

Computers have become so prevalent that typing on a keyboard efficiently and accurately has become an essential life skill. Children use computer keyboards in school to do research, type answers, take tests, and create projects. Adults do the same at work writing reports, inputting data, and creating projects. Good keyboarding skills means having all ten fingers and zero eyes on the keyboard. If you would like to improve your keyboarding skills The Library can help!

Online Keyboarding Skills Practice

Library staff recommend these practice tools and games to help improve your skills:

Use Our Computer Labs to Practice Your Skills

If you have difficulty finding time on a keyboard at home, finding uninterrupted practice time at home, or are tutoring or working with someone who needs keyboarding time, keep in mind that all of our locations have computer labs you can use to improve your skills. To get a “turn” on a computer you will need your IndyPL Library card. If you do not have a library card you can use one of our computers by picking up a guest pass at the desk. Or, ask a staff member about how to get a card of your own. We love to help people get a Library card!

Upcoming Library Programs

  • Event: Typing Practice and Instruction
  • Date & Time: Wednesday, March 13, 2:00pm
  • Location: Martindale-Brightwood Branch
  • Description: Are you ready to dive into the basics of keyboarding? Course will include fun activities to learn how to type. Adults are invited to learn how to click, scroll, and what to do with some of those strange keys on the keyboard. Get a crash course on computer parts and keys!
  • Register Here

Learning to knit or improving your knitting skills has never been easier with The Library’s online service, Creativebug. Creativebug has in-depth, online, on-demand video tutorials and classes that include transcripts, material lists, and patterns. Instructors are also accessible and willing to answer your questions. All you need is your IndyPL library card!

Improve your knitting skills with free online tutorials.

Already an expert knitter? Creativebug has an extensive curated pattern library with the latest and greatest in knit creations. You can save videos to watch later, follow your favorite instructors, and even upload images of your creations to make connections with other crafters in the community.

Here are examples of available classes for improving your knitting skills:

Create an account in Creativebug using your library card number, and then click on the link that says “See Latest Classes Here.” If you are just interested in the Pattern Library, that link will take you to the main site.

Need help? Ask a Library staff member at any of our locations or call, text or email Ask-a-Librarian.

Get inspiration for improving your knitting skills.

If you need more evidence for the power of making, or something to read or listen to while you work, check out the following books on how creation can help bring meaning and purpose to our lives:

Join us at an upcoming Library program.

  • Event: Crochet-A-Long at Michigan Road
  • Date & Time: Tuesday, March 05, 6:00pm
  • Location: Michigan Road Branch
  • Description: Those who enjoy crocheting, knitting, or other fiber arts are invited to learn a new craft and make something for the homeless. Basic supplies will be provided at the meeting. Bring along your works in progress to work on or with the group.
  • No Registration Required.
  • Event: Yarnslingers
  • Date & Time: Tuesday, March 05, 6:00pm
  • Location: Decatur Branch
  • Description: Knitters, crocheters, and fiber artists of all kinds are welcome to join monthly to meet, work on projects, share their recent creations, and discuss fiber arts. All skill levels are welcome.
  • No Registration Required.
  • Event: Floss ‘n’ Goss Fiber Arts Club
  • Date & Time: Tuesday, March 19, 6:00pm
  • Location: Central Library
  • Description: Floss ‘n’ Goss is a monthly fiber arts club where people of all ages and skill levels are welcome to work on their current thready projects in a collaborative and supportive setting! You bring your crafts, we bring the vibes!
  • Register Here

Get reading recommendations from IndyPL staff.

Knitting My Way to Peace

I’ll be honest, I love to knit. I find it very soothing and relaxing. I enjoy tv more when my hands are busy. Knitting is easy to learn and The Library has lots of resources to help the neophyte and challenge the veteran knitter.

Title - Learn to KnitTitle - Learn How to Knit With 50 SquaresTitle - Easy Knit DishclothsTitle - The Chicks With Sticks Guide to Knitting

Needlework and Mysteries

Needlework of all kinds….sewing, knitting, crocheting, weaving and embroidery are featured in these first books of various mystery series.

Title - Seams Like MurderTitle - On Skein of DeathTitle - Hems & HomicideTitle - The Vampire Knitting Club

Knitting!

Whether you are a beginning knitter or the nerdiest of needlers, the collection at the Indianapolis Public Library has materials for you. Check out our array of books, online resources, and DVDs that are sure to get your needles clicking and your yarn flying!

Title - Vogue KnittingTitle - First Time KnittingTitle - Japanese Knitting Stitch BibleTitle - Mason-Dixon Knitting

If you are a serious researcher, curious traveler, or proud resident, these links will help you explore Indiana and Indianapolis from collections of digitized photos and artifacts to letters, old newspapers articles, and more. Browse them from home or take an afternoon to visit the Indianapolis Special Collections Room at Central Library where you will find all things Indiana and Indianapolis complete with a beautiful sixth floor view of downtown Indianapolis.

Indianapolis Public Library Resources

Digital Indy Archives: Yearbooks, arts organizations, civic organizations, public safety, neighborhoods, newsmagazines all accessible online.

Hoosier State Chronicles
250+ scanned and searchable newspapers from every county in Indiana, with the earliest starting in 1804.

Indianapolis Star (1903-2004)
A full-text version of the Indianapolis Star from 1903-1922 including photographs, ads, obituaries, and marriage announcements.

Indianapolis Star (1991-Present)
Full-text coverage from the Indianapolis Star back to 1991, including obituaries, but excluding paid advertisements and freelance writers.

IndyPL Staff Reading Recommendation about Indiana and Indianapolis covering history, sports, art, nature, hoosier authors, and more.

Local Newspapers

  • Central Library has Indianapolis newspapers on microfilm from about 1822 to the present. You may access the microfilm collection in person during library hours.
  • Indianapolis Star (1903-2004) A full-text version of the Indianapolis Star from 1903-1922 including photographs, ads, obituaries, and marriage announcements.
  • Indianapolis Star (1991-Present) Full-text coverage from the Indianapolis Star back to 1991, including obituaries, but excluding paid advertisements and freelance writers.
  • Indianapolis Star ProQuest Online Database: Access 1903-present via indypl.org with a library card.
  • The Weekly View Published be Eastside Voice Community News Media for 24 zip codes in from Downtown Indy East to Greenfield, North to Lawrence, Geist, and Broad Ripple, and South to Beech Grove, New Pal & Southport.
  • La Voz de Indiana La Voz de Indiana Bilingual Newspaper serves all communities by concentrating on the Hispanic and American markets. As the “only” bilingual publication in the state of Indiana , La Voz is published in both Spanish and English. Their goals are to Embrace Diversity by promoting understanding and improve communication between people.
  • The Free Soil Banner The Free Soil Banner was published in Indianapolis from 1848 to 1854. Other cities had newspapers by the same name, but the Indiana version was edited by Lew Wallace and William B. Greer, and reportedly funded by Ovid Butler, the founder of North Western Christian University, later renamed Butler University.

Museums

The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis Archive
Physical Collection: Photos and historic documents pertaining to Indianapolis history.
Digital Collection: 1,000 artifacts from the museum. Selected objects range from Social Studies to Science to Geography with a particular emphasis on Indiana.

Indiana Medical History Museum
Physical Collection: The foremost institution in the region for medical history interpretation and preservation.

Indianapolis Firefighters’ Museum
Physical Collection: Indianapolis fire service history through exhibits, photographs, artifacts, log books, and more.
Digital Collection: Materials include photographs, logbooks, yearbooks, scrapbooks and other items the Museum has collected over the years.

Indianapolis Museum of Art at Newsfields
Stout Reference Library and Archives
Physical Collection: Indiana Artist Files, history of Oldfields estate, Art Association of Indianapolis to Newfields history, various arts-related manuscript collections.
discovernewfields.org/research/libraries | discovernewfields.org/archives
Digital Collection: Selections from online manuscript collections.

Indianapolis Resources

Benjamin Harrison Presidential Site
Physical Collection: Physical collection detailing the life of the 23rd President of the United States.
Digital Collection

Historic Indianapolis
Online Blog: A blog about historic events in Indianapolis.

Indianapolis Long Ago
Facebook Group: Photos and history from fans of Indianapolis history.

Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department
Digital Collection: All things Indianapolis police history in photographs, video, and artifacts including arrest logs from the early 1900s, information about some of the very first policewomen, mug shots from the turn of the century, IPD personnel records, and video footage of Indianapolis policing from the 1980s and 1990s.

Indy Nostalgia
Facebook Group: Photos and history from fans of Indianapolis history.

Invisible Indianapolis
Online Blog: Research blog detailing race, heritage, and community memory in Indianapolis.

Irvington Historical Society
Physical Collection: Property, school and family records related to Greater Irvington.

State Resources

Indiana Album
Digital Collection: Images from private collections across the state; based in Indianapolis.

Hoosier State Chronicles
Digital Collection: Newspaper from across Indiana. Indianapolis papers include: Recorder, Sentinel, News, Daily Herald, Journal, Leader.

Indiana Historical Society
Physical Collection: Physical collections of print materials, photographs, Digital Collection: Bass Photograph Collection, Civil War, correspondence, clubs.

Indiana Landmarks
Physical Collection: Preserving the built environment of Indiana.

Indiana Memory Digital Collection: Aggregator of statewide digital collections.

Indiana State Archives
Physical Collection: City records, land records, neighborhood records, meeting minutes, etc.

Indiana State Library
Physical Collection: Genealogy and Rare Books and Manuscripts Finding Aids | Manuscript Catalog.
Digital Collection: Photographs, maps, manuscripts, broadsides, pamphlets, periodicals, government documents, genealogy materials.
Digital Collection: Indiana State Library Historical Bureau; Indiana State Historical Markers on a variety of Marion County topics.

Indiana Department of Natural Resources
Online Database: Database of historic properties and cemeteries within Indianapolis.

Colleges & Universities

Butler University
Digital Collection: Materials from Butler University Special Collections and Archives.

Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI)
Digital Collections: Speedway, Benjamin Harrison presidential site, LGBTQ+, City Directories, Sanborn Maps, Crispus Attucks Museum.

Other Community Resources

National Historic Geographic Information System (NHGIS)
Digital Collection: Historic census tract-level census data available in GIS formats.

The Polis Center
Online Databases: Data visualization, aggregation, statistics and informational databases.

UIndy Mayoral Archives
Digital Collection: Includes archives for L. Keith Bulen, Richard G. Lugar, William H. Hudnutt, Stephen Goldsmith.

If you love learning, The Library can provide many opportunities. You can read books and e-books, listen to audiobooks, and watch movies on practically every topic imaginable. You may not know that you can also learn from some of the world’s leading experts via The Great Courses offered through Kanopy. Kanopy is an on-demand video streaming service available to IndyPL library card holders. Have you explored this fantastic learning opportunity?

The Great Courses are college level classes you can enjoy on your own schedule. The classes are designed for people who want to learn without working toward a degree. There are no deadlines or tests to worry about. Some of the classes include supplemental materials, so be sure to download the PDFs, where available. The classes are completely free. You don’t even need to spend any of your monthly Kanopy credits to watch them, so dive in and start learning!

For example, The Great Courses offers The National Geographic Guide to Birding in North America. This class can help someone become a skillful birdwatcher.

There are episodes about bird anatomy, habitat, behavior migration, and more. The program even goes on a virtual journey to some of the best birding sites in North America. If you don’t have time right now to do the entire 24 episode class, you can take as long as you’d like or skip ahead to something that interests you. That’s not something you couldn’t do if you were enrolled in a class that met in person each week! Kanopy has wonderful flexibility.

The Great Courses cover Finance, Health, Hobbies, Food and Wine, History, Literature and Language, Math and Science, Music and Fine Arts, Philosophy, Professional and Personal Growth, Travel, Programs for Young Learners and more. See some of our Staff’s favorites!

How to Get Started on The Great Courses in Kanopy

Have questions? Call the Tinker Tech/Device Helpline at 317-275-4500 or call, text or email Ask-a-Librarian.

TIP: Many of The Great Courses are also available on DVD, Audio Book CD, or as a downloadable audiobooks through Libby. Search “The Great Courses” in our online catalog.

Barbara Ann O’Leary, a Computer Lab Assistant at Central Library. Barbara has a voracious appetite for exploring a wide range of topics and enjoys helping people use digital technology to expand their horizons.

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During the solar eclipse on April 8, 2024 people on Earth can see the Moon partially, or completely block the Sun. The path of totality – the places where people can see the Moon completely block the Sun, happens to include Indianapolis this time! You can learn about solar eclipses online, by checking out books or movies from The Library, or by attending one of our programs. We have some great programs and books for kids too! Don’t miss out on this once-in-a-lifetime event!

Learn about solar eclipses and how to watch them.

Share the experience with kids.

PBS Kids: Read a Book – Solar Eclipse
Enjoy this video read aloud which tells the story of the British astronomer Arthur Stanley Eddington who decided to test Einstein’s theory of general relativity by photographing the 1919 solar eclipse.

Exploratorium
Find out where to be and what to do for the eclipse experience of a lifetime.

NASA for Kids: What is an Eclipse?

The Planetary Society: Sharing an Eclipse with Kids

Attend a program.

  • Event: Escape the Eclipse
  • Date & Time: Monday, March 04, 6:30pm
  • Location: Decatur Branch
  • Description: Legend has it that a solar eclipse happens when the sun and moon are fighting. To ensure the world is not encased in darkness forever, kids must work together to uncover clues while learning about solar eclipses during this escape room program. Will you be able to escape the eclipse? Ages 6 and up.
  • Register Here
  • Event: Escape the Eclipse
  • Date & Time: Monday, March 11, 3:00pm
  • Location: West Indianapolis Branch
  • Description: Legend has it that a solar eclipse happens when the sun and moon are fighting. To ensure the world is not encased in darkness forever, kids must work together to uncover clues while learning about solar eclipses during this escape room program. Will you be able to escape the eclipse? Ages 6 and up.
  • Register Here
  • Event: Learn About the Eclipse
  • Date & Time: Saturday, March 16, 10:30am
  • Location: Warren Branch
  • Description: Drop by to learn about the upcoming total eclipse and make your own starfinder with Globetarium!
  • No Registration Required.
  • Event: Create Your Own Solar Eclipse Viewer
  • Date & Time: Saturday, March 16, 2:00pm
  • Location: Lawrence Branch
  • Description: Get ready for the big event! All Ages are welcome to create their own solar eclipse viewer using cereal boxes. Younger children (preschool and younger) will need to be accompanied by an adult. Adults can sign up to create a solar eclipse viewer too! All materials will be supplied.
  • Register Here
  • Event: Escape the Eclipse
  • Date & Time: Monday, March 18, 3:00pm
  • Location: Franklin Road Branch
  • Description: Legend has it that a solar eclipse happens when the sun and moon are fighting. To ensure the world is not encased in darkness forever, kids must work together to uncover clues while learning about solar eclipses during this escape room program. Will you be able to escape the eclipse? Ages 6 and up.
  • Register Here

We think outside the box and outside Library walls. The Library promotes the joy and power of sharing books by providing access to books and resources outside our buildings and electronically, 24/7.

“Monument” Art Installation and Book Share Station at Central Library

“Monument,” an art installation and book share station originally located at Monument Circle, is now located outside Central Library. “Monument” was created by Brian McCutcheon for The Public Collection, a public art and literacy project developed by Rachel M. Simon with support from the Herbert Simon Family Foundation. It was installed on Monument Circle between August 2015 and September 2019.

The art exhibit doubles as a book share station. The books are free and available to everyone. Borrow and return books supplied and stocked by The Library at your leisure. No library card is required.

Quote across the top, “A public library is the most enduring of memorials: the trustiest monument of an event or a name or an affection; for it, and it only, is respected by wars and revolutions, and survives them.” ~Mark Twain, 1894
                                                                                                                 
The reinstallation was made possible by the Herbert Simon Family Foundation, Buckingham Foundation, and Friends of the Library through gifts to The Indianapolis Public Library Foundation.

Ruckle Street Pocket Park Storywalk®

In partnership with the Mapleton-Fall Creek Development Corporation, the InfoZone branch placed a StoryWalk® in the Ruckle Street Pocket Park as a unique way to encourage families to read and exercise together. Laminated story pages are available at various points along the path, following the natural progression of the story. Learn more about how to take a walk, and read a story as you go!

Download & Stream

Take us with you anytime, anywhere with millions of e-books, movies, music, and more to choose from! Download & stream instantly for free with your Library card!

Learn on Demand

Did you know the Library offers free on-demand video streaming classes and learning modules? Add a new skill, polish a skill that needs an update, or just try something for fun! Learn at your own pace. All you need is a Library card! If you have not explored these fantastic learning opportunities yet, get started right here! Don’t have a Library card yet? Find out how to get one here.

Research Databases

Do homework, research your project or hobbies, take an online class, or learn a language with our Research databases anytime, anywhere with your Library card!