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Using SHPO's Files

SHPO Office Open for Research Appointments

The Minnesota State Historic Preservation Office is open for researchers. Current office hours are 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM, Tuesdays and Wednesdays, by appointment only.

To schedule an appointment please request a preferred and second choice date and time by emailing You will then receive a return email verifying your appointment. When you arrive at 50 Sherburne Avenue in Saint Paul at the assigned time, enter the building lobby and tell Capitol Security you are visiting SHPO and show a photo ID. The guard will then give you a temporary badge to access our office on the second floor, Suite 203.

SHPO staff members will be on hand to assist you with our files, if needed. However, please note that all the historic inventory and National Register files have been scanned and are available digitally through our Citrix ShareFile account..

Accessing SHPO Files

Inventory forms, National Register nominations, and eligibility information for above-ground (architecture-history) properties are available in the MnSHIP application. Official copies of National Register nominations can be found at the National Park Service Database.

Archaeology site forms are available in the Office of the State Archaeologist (OSA) portal to authorized users.

Eligibility information for archaeology sites and archaeological report titles are obtained by submitting a database search request to See instructions below.

Reports (architecture-history, archaeology, and interdisciplinary) are available by emailing If the report has been digitized, a digital copy will be provided. If the report has not yet been digitized, you can schedule an appointment to visit the SHPO Office to access the report. A list of architecture-history report titles is maintained and periodically updated on SHPO’s website.

Request a Database Search 

Please note: Research requests are answered in the order received and could take up to 30 days to complete. Please make sure you consider this as part of your project timeline.  

Various types of cultural resource searches can be requested by e-mail. Results are generally e-mailed to the requestor in the form of Microsoft Excel documents. Email with requests or questions. 

Do you need to know the archaeological sites within your project area? 

Currently, SHPO’s database is searched using the Public Land Survey System (PLSS). Therefore, in your request email please send a list or table of all township, range and section numbers covered by your project (including buffer areas).

Example TRS table: 

Project 1 

Township Range Section
146 51 15
146 51 16
146 51 22

Note: Only numbers are necessary. 

Obtaining Scanned Files

As of June 2023, SHPO’s hardcopy archaeological National Register nominations and site forms have been scanned and are available to properly credentialed users via SHPO’s Citrix ShareFile website. In addition, some of the architecture-history and archaeology survey reports have been scanned.

To obtain scanned documents please continue to email your requests to while including the following information depending upon the document type:

Document Type* Information to Include (if possible)
National Register file (archaeology)** Site #, property name
National Register File  Site #/ NRIS #, property name
Architecture-History Report  Report #, title, author, report year
Archaeology Report Report #, title, author, report year

* Please visit the Office of the State Archaeologist Portal for information on archaeological sites. To record an archaeological site, please see instructions on the OSA website.
** National Register nominations for above-ground/architectural history properties are available in MnSHIP. Official copies are available at the National Park Service Database.

In return, you will receive an email with the requested file either as an attachment or a link to its location in Citrix ShareFile.   

Archaeological and interdisciplinary (i.e., both archaeological and historic) sites and reports, ruins, and most TCPs (Traditional Cultural Properties) are considered non-public. Their information availability is restricted to licensed archaeologists or their duly authorized representatives, landowners/property managers or their duly authorized representatives, and tribal historic preservation officers or members of the Minnesota Indian Affairs Council (MIAC). To obtain any of these types of non-public information, please include documentary evidence of your qualification(s) in your request email. 

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