Researching with the BCHA

The BCHA is delighted to assist researchers of all backgrounds by making available, where reasonable, our collection, archival, and library holdings.  Those wishing to do their research on-site at the History Center at Courthouse Square can do so at no charge if they schedule their appointment 48 hours or more in advanced.  Researchers who “drop-in” or need rush services (less than 48 hours) will be charged a $50.00 convenience fee. 

Off-site researchers are welcomed to hire our staff at $25.00 per hour to do the research on their behalf.  Payment must be made in advance before research will be conducted.  There is no fee for an initial review of our database to determine if we can fulfill the request.

Fees associated with research and use can be found here.  This schedule is current as of June 1, 2023.  All questions can be emailed to info@berrienhistory.org.

Donating to the BCHA

The BCHA accepts the donation of artifacts and archival materials to the collections throughout the year.  We use the following rubric to determine acceptance or rejection. Items that are left on the property will be deemed abandoned and discarded without review. 

  1. Does it have a direct connection to Berrien County or Southwest Michigan history?
  2. Does it help flesh out existing stories we tell or does it tell us a new story?
  3. Do we have the resources to care and maintain the item?
  4. Can we use this item or is it too damaged?
  5. Does the donor have restrictions?

 While the BCHA does approach each donation on its merits, we recommend you review the above rubric and the following lists to determine if you item is fulfilling a need.  Questions can be directed via email to info@berrienhistory.org.

Items of Interest

Areas of Interest

Items Not Collecting