The Miami-Dade Public Library System is comprised of a Main Library and forty neighborhood branches that meet the informational, educational and recreational needs of a highly diverse public. We are committed to supporting lifelong learning and knowledge through self-education. Our helpful and experienced staff provides information, quality services and programs in a welcoming environment. We offer a broad and relevant collection and our expanding information networks use the latest technology. We are in the business of satisfying our customer’s need to know.
Your Library Card: A Passport to the World
A world of information, education and recreation can be found through books, magazines, videos, compact discs, DVD’s and other materials that are within easy reach by using your Library Card.
The card enables you to:
- Borrow from a collection of more than 4 million items;
- Access, from any computer, a wide variety of online information databases;
- Reserve a library computer for a specific time the same day;
- Borrow books from other libraries worldwide through the Interlibrary Loan Service;
- Return materials to any branch and drop off books after-hours;
- Create your own library account to:
- Place items on reserve;
- Have items sent from one library to another that is more convenient for you;
- Renew materials online to avoid late fees.
- Free of charge to any resident or property owner in the Miami-Dade Public Library taxing district. Holders of library cards in Hialeah, North Miami and North Miami Beach are eligible to borrow Library System materials without an annual fee, all others pay a $50 annual fee.
- Official picture ID and proof of your home address or a property tax receipt required; parental consent for children under 16 needed to obtain a card.
- Apply online, but pick up in person is required.
Cardholders are responsible for all items checked out on their card, including overdue fines and lost fees for those items. A lost card should be reported to the Library as soon as possible.
Computers and Technology
- Free public access computer stations system wide; free Internet access; word processing, presentation, database management software; children’s tutorials; test review programs.
Electronic Access to Information
- Library homepage-www.mdpls.org
- branch locations
- online databases
- renew materials
- check own library account
- catalog and library program search
- Ask-A-Librarian electronic and live “chat” reference
- Informational databases include:
- business, medical, genealogy, literature, science, education, history resources
- newspapers, magazines and encyclopedias
- special children’s and teen information
At any of our libraries, librarians are specialists in locating information. Patrons may ask at the Information Desk, telephone library staff or request assistance electronically through Ask-A-Librarian on many topics.
Library customers or all ages who are interested in reading mysteries, science fiction, romance, espionage, classics or other areas are encouraged to request suggestions from Information Desk staff. Librarians will recommend novels and best sellers for reading enjoyment.
From children’s story time and tutoring, to art exhibits, musical performances and other cultural events, programs reflect the community’s rich diversity. To find out what’s happening at your branch, visit the Library’s homepage, pick up a copy of the Quarterly Schedule of Programs at your branch or call 305-375-BOOK.
Bookmobiles offer a full range of library services and materials to residents who do not have a branch library nearby. The bookmobiles make weekly visits to a variety of locations throughout Miami-Dade County. For a schedule of visits, please call 305-480-1729 or visit the Library’s homepage.
The Talking Books Library
Part of the Library of Congress National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped, this service loans books and magazines on cassette tapes or in Braille free by mail to persons who have difficulty seeing or using standard small print. For more information, please call 305-751-8687.
Project L.E.A.D. (Literacy for Every Adult in Miami-Dade)
Project LEAD provides confidential, free, one-on-one tutoring for adults in basic reading and writing. For more information, call 305-375-5323.
Reading is fundamental and the love of reading at local childcare facilities is enhanced via the Library System’s Project Jump Start. Jump Start offers early literacy kits for children ages 6 months-5 years. For more information, call 305-375-4116.
Connections: Library Service for the Homebound
Library materials by mail to residents of all ages who are physically disabled or chronically ill and unable to visit the library. To enhance cultural activities, we also loan kits, books, videos, DVD’s and CD’s to senior centers and nursing facilities. For more information, call 305-474-7251.
Main Library and its Special Collections
The Main Library is located on the Cultural Plaza in the heart of downtown Miami. Home to a collection of over 650,000 books and other media, the Main Library features many special services and departments.
Helen Muir Florida Collection
- Current and historical information on the State of Florida, emphasizing South Florida, the work of Florida authors and Floridiana, including rare books, documents and local newspapers; it also houses the Gleason Waite Romer collection of 17,500 photographic negatives and prints recording Miami’s history from the 1920s through the early 1950s.
- Complete collection of U.S. Census records from 1790 to 1930; U.S. City Directories from 1860 through 1935; materials containing information on ancestry, land and military records, immigration records, and the Social Security Death Index.
Business and Science
- Information on starting your own business, researching industry, marketing and consumer statistics; locations of people and businesses in the US and around the world; over 300 U.S. and international trade directories and 900 periodicals; complete Patent Depository Library with information on patents issued since 1790; classes on how to research patents; medical reference on family, consumer and professional medical topics.
- Extensive collection of fiction and non-fiction books, newspapers and magazines in many languages including Spanish, French, Haitian Creole, German, Italian, Portuguese, Russian, and Yiddish; also houses the Cuba Collection – special reference materials; and language learning materials.
Merrett R. Stierheim Urban Affairs Collection
- Materials and research on topics specific to running a local government; information includes public administration, police and fire science, planning, public works, and urban design.
- Extensive picture and artist file highlighting South Florida artists; music scores, 16mm films, DVDs, videos, audio books; art reference, visual/performing arts and music.
Social Sciences, Humanities and Young Adult Collections
- U.S. Federal Depository Library housing government publications; collections concentrating on grant writing and fundraising; college and career guidance materials; literary criticism, philosophy, religion, psychology, biography, travel, history and education.
Library Advisory Board
Appointed by the Board of County Commissioners, members provide information, advice and counsel to the Mayor and Commissioners on all matters relating to current Library operations and future development.
Friends of the Miami-Dade Public Library
The Friends of the Miami-Dade Public Library play an important role in advocating on behalf of the Library System at the local, state and national levels and raising money through memberships, donations, and an annual Book Sale.
Miami-Dade Public Library Foundation, Inc.
The Miami-Dade Public Library Foundation was founded in January 2002 to create an endowment of major capital projects, and major educational, cultural community projects.
For additional information about these library support groups, please call 305-375-5017.
Your library needs you. If you are 16 years and older, we invite you to become a volunteer. For more information, call 305-375-5572.