The reading rooms are open to both official and unofficial researchers. Appointments are highly encouraged due to shortage of staff and space available. You can make an appointment by emailing Maxwell AFB is in HPCON Alpha and masks are not required. For up-to-date base HPCON status, visit

What's New


For information about the AFHRA, access to the facility, rules and policies for the reading room and for handling historical documents, and the agency's holdings of unit histories and special collections, please visit the Welcome page.


8:30 a.m.- 4:00 p.m. (
Central Time Zone)  

600 Chennault Circle
Maxwell AFB, AL

(334) 953-5697

About the AFHRA

Air Force Historical Research Agency Emblem


Air Force Historical Research Agency

The Air Force Historical Research Agency is the repository for Air Force historical documents. The Agency's collection, begun in Washington, DC, during World War II, moved in 1949 to Maxwell Air Force Base, the site of Air University, to provide research facilities for professional military education students, the faculty, visiting scholars, and the general public. It consists today of over 100,000,000 pages devoted to the history of the service, and represents the world's largest and most valuable organized collection of documents on US military aviation.

The Archives at the Air Force Historical Research Agency (pamphlet)


Visiting the Agency

Potential visitors to the AFHRA are encouraged to contact the Agency to let us know when you plan to arrive and how long you plan to stay. We will attempt to accommodate all visitors. Contact the Agency through email at or call (334) 953-5697.

For additional information, see the Welcome page.

Ordering Digitized Documents

To request a document in digital format, please complete the attached Electronic Document Request (the form works best in Chrome browser), being sure to provide all the requested information. If you need help identifying the document, please submit an archival request. Your order will be provided through a system called DOD Safe. You will be notified by e-mail as your documents are being uploaded by our Media Coordinator with some helpful tips to resolve any download issues. We can send a CD/DVD by mail if necessary. Send requests to
While we make every effort to provide documents as quickly as possible, we do have a very high volume of electronic media requests so please allow 3 to 4 months for processing.

Sending Collections to Us

The Air Force Historical Research Agency is charged with collecting and preserving copies of historical materials of archival significance. This means that all documentation in the collection is relevant to the history of the Air Force and is significant enough to warrant permanent preservation. Limited space makes it imperative that only documents of the greatest historical significance are included. Therefore, the following information is a useful guide when determining what to send to the AFHRA.

Please do not send items such as flags, streamers, ribbons, medals, plaques, trophies, uniforms, instruments, aeronautical material, museum pieces, displays, and the like. These should be sent to the National Museum of the Air Force. Books, newspapers, and magazines are not accessionable either as they are usually archived elsewhere. Documents of a purely technical nature are collected by the Defense Technical Documentation Center and not held at the AFHRA. If you are sending photographs with your collection please ensure that they are labeled as accurately as possible. Remove all home addresses, phone numbers, and Social Security Numbers from each item. This will ensure that the public, to include you, has access to these materials.

Boxes that do not arrive in the above condition will be returned to the sender. Coordinate your shipment by sending an e-mail to or submitting a Contact Us form. You can also call (334) 953-2959.


The site was last reviewed for broken links on 30 November 2023.