For information about the AFHRA, access to the facility, rules and policies for the reading room and for handling historical documents, and the agency's holdings of unit histories and special collections, please visit the Welcome page.
The Air Force Historical Research Agency is the repository for Air Force historical documents.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 70,000,000 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)
8:30 a.m.- 4:00 p.m.
Central Time Zone
600 Chennault Circle
Maxwell AFB, AL
The reading rooms are open to both official and unofficial researchers. Appointments are no longer required. Please note that fully vaccinated persons are no longer required to wear a mask while inside the Agency. A person is considered fully vaccinated two weeks after the second dose of a two-dose series, or two weeks after receiving the single-dose vaccine. Personnel who are not fully vaccinated must continue to follow applicable DoD mask guidance, to include wearing a mask while inside the AFHRA facility.
Guidance on Use of Masks
More COVID-19 Information
Potential visitors to the AFHRA are very strongly 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, but security is tight and "drop-in" visitors may be denied entry, at least until the Agency staff can make the appropriate arrangements. Contact the Agency through email at AFHRA.NEWS@us.af.mil or call (334) 953-5697.
For additional information, see the Welcome page.
To request a document in digital format, please complete the attached Microfilm/Compact Disk Order, 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.
While there is currently no charge for this service, please limit your order to ten CDs at a time.
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.
Freedom of Information Act Requests (FOIA)
Mandatory Declassification Review (MDR)
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 AFHRA.News@us.af.mil or submitting a Contact Us form. You can also call (334) 953-2959.
The site was last reviewed for broken links on 22 February 2021.