HCPL offers a variety of library cards. The Knowledge Card and Kids Know It Card are full-service cards. The iKnow Card offers instant access to nearly all of the library's online resources. We also offer library cards for active duty military personnel and TexShare Cards for use at partner libraries across Texas.
Library Cards - Pick the card that's right for you!
Visit any Harris County Public Library Branch to receive a full-service card. All you need is proof of address and a completed library card application form.
NOTE: During the Covid19-related building closures, HCPL's iKnow Digital Access Card can be used to place holds and check out up to 10 books and DVDs for curbside pick-up. This applies to new and existing iKnow Cards. Learn more about No Contact Curbside Pick-Up
The HCPL iKnow Digital Access Card allows instant access to:
- Downloadable eBooks and audiobooks through OverDrive and OneClickDigital
- Streaming video through Kanopy and OverDrive
- Popular magazines through Flipster
- Research databases for business, genealogy, language learning and more
NOTE: If you have an HCPL full-service library card, you do not need to get an additional digital access card. Your full-service card grants you access to these same services.
iKnow Digital Access Cards are valid for three years and are restricted to residents of Harris County.
If you are active duty military personnel, you can access downloadable media and our databases. If you do not already have a library card but are still in the Harris County area, you can get a library card by visiting one of our branches. For active duty military personnel, a military ID may be used for the purpose of obtaining a library card even though military IDs do not show a mailing address. APO addresses supplied by the applicant are acceptable on library accounts for military personnel. Library cards are free for everyone. If you are not currently in the Harris County area, you can get a library card online using our Military Library Card Application.
Harris County Public Library participates in the TexShare Library Card Program sponsored by the Texas State Library and Archives Commission. The TexShare Card Program provides free reciprocal borrowing privileges to registered borrowers of member libraries, academic and public.
The TexShare card allows HCPL cardholders to borrow materials from other participating libraries in the State of Texas. Only currently registered HCPL customers in good standing (no overdue or lost books, and no library fines) may get a TexShare card from Harris County.
TexShare Cardholders visiting from another library system will be asked to provide proof of mailing address, issued HCPL library cards, and allowed full HCPL borrowing privileges with the exception of Interlibrary Loan.
Only HCPL customers registered for 90 days in good standing (no overdue or lost books, and no library fines) may get a TexShare card from Harris County.
For complete information on this State Library program see the TexShare Home Page at https://www.tsl.texas.gov/texshare/index.html.
Parents or guardians must sign and accept financial responsibility on library card application for children under 18 years of age.
Fill out and print the application below or get one at the library.
Kids Know It Card Application Save a tree and swipe your ID at the kiosk in branch
From online research tools to the latest bestseller, Harris County Public Library provides information and resources to enrich lives and strengthen communities within and beyond our walls. The shelves of our 26 branches are stocked with over 1.5 million books, DVDs and CDs and our digital media catalog of downloadable eBooks, audiobooks, digital magazines, and streaming movies contains over 150,000 items and still growing.
Use the Explore tab at the top of the page anywhere on the website to access our collection.
Our Collection Development Team researches each title, listens to input from customers like you and ultimately decides what materials go onto our libraries' shelves and into our digital media catalog. Clck on Collection FAQ to learn how we make purchasing decisions, how to suggest a title we might have missed, what we do with worn-out or damaged books and answers to many other collection-related questions.