About the NFPA Research Library and Archives


The NFPA Research Library & Archives researches the world’s literature for information, captures and illuminates NFPA’s history through our archives, and connects members to our content through our industry-leading NFPA Ontology to help the NFPA community save lives and reduce loss.


The NFPA Research Library contains all NFPA published print materials including, each edition of NFPA codes, standards, NFPA Journals, current books, and handbooks. Collections also include books and journals pertinent to the fire, first responder, electrical communities, and other business of the Association. Increasingly, research materials are electronic which have licensing restrictions. These resources will be shared with Members and the public as permissions allow.


The NFPA Research Archives contains historic photographs, film, artwork, reports, rare books, NFPA publications, and artifacts tied to the history of NFPA and of firefighting. The holdings can be categorized in three tiers that define the scope and level of archival vigilance.

  1. The products of, and the business workings of, the Association
  2. Materials directly referenced by, or foundational to, the products of NFPA
  3. Historic fires and firefighting of a general nature, not specific to code development
NFPA Ontology

The NFPA Ontology is an industry-leading semantic model that is designed to help autoclassify key concepts within NFPA’s content resources. Applying consistent language (taxonomy keywords and topics) serves to link and relate meaning within NFPA’s structured and unstructured content. The ontology will be used in response to business needs, such as increasing findability, enabling filtering, and highlighting related information.

Services offered to NFPA members and the public


Research services

  • Research services on demand
    Reserve right to charge public up to $150/hour
  • Access the Library catalog
    Staff may see more than Public
  • Photocopies of NON-NFPA Books
    Limited by copyright law
  • Photocopies of NFPA materials and publications
    Limited by copyright law
  • Copies of withdrawn codes, not in catalog
    Free PDF watermarked "Withdrawn"
  • NFPA reports and Fire Investigations
    Some images are restricted


  • Copy archival print materials and images
    If permissions allow, without harming the original, and within copyright
  • Visit the archives
  • Directly research microfilm
    In the library, supervised

Records Management

  • Access Committee Standards
    As identified in retention schedule and advised by Legal
  • Access FIDO materials and database
    Need approval from the manager of FIDO

  • Access Fire Investigations
    Need approval from the head of Fire Investigation, and Legal