The library collections are comprised of printed and manuscript materials that relate to the military history of the eighteenth century, with a concentration on the people and events of the American Revolution. More specifically, the Robert Charles Lawrence Fergusson Collection specializes in works relating to the art of war in the period, providing context for the achievement of the American forces and their French allies in securing the independence of the United States. Complementing the rare book collection are historical manuscripts, maps, graphic arts and the archives of the Society of the Cincinnati. A modern reference collection supports broad research on the Revolutionary War and founding era. In addition, a collection of nineteenth- and twentieth-century fiction and children’s literature reveals popular perceptions of the American Revolution through time.
As the Institute resides at Anderson House, the former home of Larz and Isabel Anderson, the library collections also include books, manuscripts, photographs and other documentary materials that relate to the history of the building and the lives and legacies of its original owners.