Searching the Country for the Perfect Book: Inter-Library Loans

Have you ever browsed the catalog for a specific item and been unable to find it? One way to get that item is to request it through inter-library loan or ILL. An inter-library loan borrows materials from libraries outside of Allegheny County with whom we have lending agreements. These libraries could be anywhere in the country. Allegheny County also has a reciprocal lending agreement in which we send our materials out across the country.

There are several important things to know if you are interested in placing an ILL. The first is that anyone in the county may place a request, and it is free. It will take some time to fulfill the hold; most requests take between four to six weeks to arrive. Not all items can be sent through ILL. The item must be at least a year old before the ILL department can accept the request. Another thing to know is that interlibrary loan items have slightly different circulation rules. They may only renew once before they must be returned.

If you are interested in placing an interlibrary loan, staff are always happy to help you; or you can find the ILL link at the bottom of the catalog page.

Be sure to check out the FAQ section for more information.