Interlibrary Loans (ILLs)

Interlibrary Loan is a service to Blount County Public Library (BCPL) cardholders in good standing to obtain materials not owned by the library. We attempt to obtain requested items from other libraries in Tennessee.

We cannot request the following items on Interlibrary Loan:

  • New (published within the past 6 months)
  • Reference
  • Genealogy materials
  • Items owned by BCPL

Please ask the Patron Services ILL Specialist about exceptions.


Search the Library Catalog to see if Blount County Public Library owns the material you need. If the library owns the item and it is checked out, you may place a reserve online through your account. Visit our How to place a Reserve page.
If you are unable to find what you need, there are 4 ways to submit a request.

  1. Complete this online fillable Interlibrary Loan Form.
  2. Download, print and turn in a paper copy to the Check-Out Desk in Patron Services.
  3. Call the ILL Patron Services Specialist at 865-982-0981 or 865-273-1424.
  4. Make an in-person request.  Forms are located at the Self-Check-Out Desk in Patron Services and at Adult Services in the Reference Area.


Items can be requested in-person at the Checkout Desk, by phone at 865-982-0981, or with our online ILL Request Form.

  • Only 1 title per form.
  • Only 3 ILL requests may be active at a time.
  • New materials (less than 6 months old) cannot be ordered through ILL.
  • Materials already owned by BCPL cannot be ordered through ILL, but can be requested through our online catalog.

Status of Requests 

  • Items may take 2-6 weeks to arrive.
  • You will be notified by phone or email when it is available to pick up.
  • To cancel or check the status of a request, please call 865-982-0981 or email  Please be ready to provide your name, library card number, and the title of your requested item.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use the BCPL ILL service? 
If you have a valid BCPL library card, you are entitled to use the ILL service. 

How much does it cost? 
ILL is a free service. Sometimes there is a fee for borrowing materials, but we never agree to a fee without first finding out if the patron is willing to pay it.

How many items can I borrow through ILL? 
Only 3 ILL requests may be active at a time.

Are there materials that cannot be borrowed? 
Not all items are available through ILL. Items NOT available include:

  • Items published within the last 6 months (excluding magazines or newspaper articles)
  • Some Genealogy materials or Reference materials
  • Items owned by/currently in the collection of the BCPL

How long does it take to get an item via ILL? 
The length of time varies greatly from several days to over a month.

How can I find out if my Interlibrary Loan Request is here? 
We will notify you by phone or email if your request has arrived.

Why was I never notified that my ILL was available?
While we do our best to provide the materials requested, we may not receive them from the lending library.  If in doubt, please give us a call!

What happens to ILLs that I don’t pick up?
If we borrow an item from another library but you do not pick it up, it will be returned to the lending library on the date due.

Can ILL materials be renewed? 
Sometimes they can, but not in every case. It depends on the policy of the library which loaned us the item. Please call us at least 4 days before the due date to request a renewal.

When is my ILL due?
Please return by the due date on the slipcover. If you do not return an ILL item, you will be responsible for any cost incurred.

Where do I return my ILL materials?
ILL materials should be returned inside at the Checkout Desk – with ILL slipcovers still attached. This helps us speedily return items to the owning library. Returning materials on time helps us maintain cordial relations with the other libraries in the ILL system.

Call the main number at 865-982-0981 or the ILL Patron Services Specialist at 865-273-1421.