Tacoma Public Library
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How do I get an answer to my question?

The Tacoma Public Library offers many ways to get an answer to a question.  The best way to get in-depth assistance with your research question is to come to the Library. Which Library?  The downtown Main Library has a comprehensive collection of reference resources and the unique information resources on the history of Tacoma and the South Sound found in the Northwest Room. Our two regional libraries - the Anna Lemon Wheelock Library in the north end and the Moore Library in the south end also have extensive reference resources. The remaining libraries offer limited reference materials and assistance. Also available are:

  • Telephone Reference
    Services are provided through Telephone Reference @ 253-292-2001.  The staff in this department are ready to assist callers with informational and reference questions that can be answered in a three to five minute time frame.  If the question requires more indepth research, the patron is asked to provide their name and telephone number.  These questions are passed on to the staff of Central Reference for additional research and a return telephone call is made to the patron.
  • WebReference. 
    WebReference is the Tacoma Public Library’s on-line information service for general reference questions.  This is another way to ask questions and receive answers from the Library’s reference staff.  Each email question, as with all reference questions, will be treated with the strictest confidence.  Anyone, anywhere can utilize this service.  WebReference is designed for specific questions with brief, factual answers.  For answers to more complex questions or research assistance, please visit the Tacoma Public Library’s Main Library.  Reference staff will do their best to respond to each question within twenty-four hours (one business day excluding weekends and holidays). 
  • NW-WebReference
    NW-WebReference is the Tacoma Public Library's on-line information service for Tacoma and Northwest-related questions. This is another way to ask questions and receive answers from the staff of the Library's Northwest Room and Special Collections. Each email question, as with all reference questions, will be treated with the strictest confidence.  As with WebReference, anyone, anywhere can utilize this service and it is also designed for specific questions with brief, factual answers.  For answers to more complex questions or research assistance on a Tacoma or Northwest-related topic, please visit the Northwest Room in the Tacoma Public Library’s Main Library.  The staff of the Northwest Room will do their best to respond to each question within twenty-four hours (one business day excluding weekends and holidays)
  • Reference USPS Mail Service
    The Reference staff of the Tacoma Public Library will provide reference service through the United States Postal Service.  Specific, written questions in the form of a letter can be mailed to: 

Reference Service
Tacoma Public Library
1102 Tacoma Avenue South
Tacoma, WA 98402.
 

Please include your name and complete mailing address for a return reply.  As with all other forms of reference services, reference mail service is designed for specific questions with brief, factual answers.  Reference staff will do their best to respond to each question within twenty-four hours (one business day excluding weekends and holidays) of receipt of the letter.

Last Updated 02.01.2012