Request Items from Outside the Minuteman Library Network

Books and other materials not owned by the Minuteman Network can often be obtained from the Commonwealth Catalog (ComCat) or via interlibrary loan (ILL) which extends to libraries outside of Massachusetts but to all over the United States.

Please limit your ILL request to 1 per week.

To Request an Interlibrary Loan:

  • Fill out a Somerville Public Library Materials Request Form, located from the Reference Desk on the 2nd floor of the Central Library, OR
  • Submit your request via email to Please remember to include your library card number.

How you will be notified:

  • E-mail  OR
  • Via phone

Where you will pick up the item:

Depending on your preference, requested items can be held for you upstairs at the Reference Desk at the Central Library or at the Circulation Desk at one of the branches. Requested items will be held for you until they are due. Interlibrary loan materials are charged out for different lengths of time, determined by the lending library. Renewals are sometimes possible. Contact the interlibrary loan department as soon as you know that you need a renewal via email at or via phone, at: 617-623-5000 x2955. Loans must be returned to the Central Library or one of its branches.

Patrons may request magazine and journal articles through Interlibrary Loan as well submitting an e-mail to Please remember to include your library card number. Articles that are five pages or less are free.  After the first five pages there is a fee of 15 cents per page.

Please note that the length of time it takes for us to receive materials owned by libraries outside the Minuteman Network varies depending on their point of origin and availability.  For more information, please call the Interlibrary Loan Department at (617) 623-5000 x2955, or email us at

Notice of Possible Fees

We will not be able to tell in advance when you make a request if it will be free. We will, of course, try to borrow from a free lender first.

We will need to know in advance if you are will willing to pay for your ILL requests. Please put "free," "up to $10," "up to $20," or "at any cost" on your request. If you agree to a fee you will need to bring a check payable to "Massachusetts Library System" when you pick up the item.