This week's topic for the 52 Weeks to Better Genealogy is:
Week 4: Learn about your local public library’s inter-library loan (ILL) policy. Pick a genealogy-related book that you want to read that is not in your library’s collection. Ask the librarian how to request the book from another library. Find the different library systems from which you can request books through your own library, as this can dramatically increase the number of genealogy books to which you have access. If you have a genealogy blog, write about your experience with requesting items through your library’s ILL service.
The Allen County Public Library system allows interlibrary loan with all of the libraries in the county. But the Genealogy Center at the main library does not participate. They want their materials available to anyone who may come to the library and don't want their collection to get lost or damaged. I would hate to travel all the way to Fort Wayne (if I didn't already live here) and find out the book I really needed to break down a brick wall was checked out or at another facility using ILL. So it makes perfect sense.
According to the borrowing guidelines on their website, ACPL does have ILL with other libraries. I did not know about the website that they use that allows you to request books, articles, and book chapters over the web. I'll have to try it out sometime and see how well it works.
The other great thing about ILL in the Genealogy Center is that I can get FHL microfilm on loan. I requested a film for the first time 2 weeks ago and can't wait for it to arrive! Ohio county, Indiana death records here I come.