Skip to main content

A Basic Guide to Getting Started at the Library: Borrowing Materials

Using the library's resources and collections

Who Can Borrow

•  Individuals living within the Kansas City Metropolitan Area:

Missouri Counties: Bates, Caldwell, Cass, Clay, Clinton, Jackson, Johnson, Lafayette, Platte, Ray

Kansas Counties: Douglas, Franklin, Johnson, Leavenworth, Linn, Miami, Wyandotte

•  Students and faculty of participating courtesy card institution

•  High school students with credit card information provided by a parent (who must be present at registration)

•  Established business within the KCMO Area that have completed the Corporate Borrower application (see below)

•  Document Services customers via interlibrary loan, including member libraries of the Mid-America Library Alliance (MALA)

Patrons can preregister by completing this online application.

Corporate Borrower Application

Established businesses within the KC Metro area may apply for a Corporate Borrower account (see Missouri/Kansas counties above).  Corporate accounts may have up to 12 authorized borrowers.

Contact Reference Services at 816.926.8701 for more information about authorized borrowing for businesses, or fill out an online application.

Individual Registration

You can preregister before coming to the Library:

  • Fill out our Registration Form online
  • We'll send a confirmation via email
  • On your first visit, come to the Reference Desk to get your library card
  • We can add borrowing privileges at any time; photo ID and a credit/debit card are required

Circulation Guidelines

All borrowers must provide their LHL library card at time of check-out.

Adult and courtesy card borrowers may check-out a total of 10 items.

High school students (student w/parent) may check-out a total of 5 items.

Check-out period for books is 3 weeks with two 3 week renewals, if no request has been placed on the item.

Check-out period for specifications and government documents is 48 hours with two 48 hour renewals.

Items may be renewed by phone (816-363-4600), e-mail ( or in person.

The following material does not circulate:

   •  Journals

   •  Technical Reports

   •  Microfiche and Microfilm

   •  Rare Books from the History of Science Collection

   •  Maps and Folios

   •  Reference Books

   •  Materials Published Prior to 1900.

   •  Fragile or Difficult to Replace Items.

Patrons with overdue items will not be able to check-out additional items.  Abuse of the loan agreement may result in the loss of borrowing privileges.

A standard replacement cost of $150 will be charged for each item not returned in a timely manner.  A $25 processing fee will be added to all credit card transactions.

A damage fee of $25 will be assessed on an individual basis unless the item needs to be replaced.

How to Return Items

Items may be returned to the Reference Desk from 9am to 5pm, Monday-Friday.

Materials will also be accepted on the second Saturday of each month between 10am-2pm.  Regular reference services will not be available, although the exhibition and cosmology theater are open to the public.