The NOAA Central Library houses a special archive of more than 5,000 rare historical books. Many of these date to the 18th and 19th Centuries, and some are even earlier. This collection includes works from the archive that have special significance to the historical record of ocean exploration. The collection is divided chronologically into three eras: pre-1846, 1846-1922, and 1923-1945. Each entry includes the author, title, publication information, year of publication, significance to ocean exploration, and NOAA Central Library call number.