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FYS 100 (12/13) - Heroes and Villains: Using Rare Books and Special Collections

FYS Research Guide for Professor Allison's Fall 2017 class.

Requesting and Using Rare Books & Special Collections Materials

Galvin Rare Book Room

The Galvin Rare Book Room is open by appointment.  Materials in the Rare Book Room are not available to be checked out or removed from the room.  Researchers will be required to read and sign a request and use form.

Special Collections

Items located in Special Collections may be requested at any time during the library service hours by completing a Rare Books/Special Collections request form available in the Rare Books Room or at the Information and Assistance Desk in Boatwright Library. Patrons must include name, status, and UR ID (SpiderCard, Special Borrower's Card, or Friends of the Library Card). Staff members will retrieve the items, check the condition of the material and note any damage or condition concerns, and place a security wrap on the item. After staff explains the appropriate use guidelines, the item may be checked out (but not desensitized) for a 4-hour time period.  Researchers will be required to read and sign a request and use form.

Special Collections materials may be used in the library from 9 a.m. - 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday, and from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Friday. Please note that no items are allowed to be checked out overnight or removed from the library, and all materials returned late are subject to fines. After the user is finished with the material, it must be returned to the Information and Assistance Desk to be checked in and placed for reshelving. Patrons without an accepted UR ID must provide a valid photo ID, preferably a driver's license, and may only use the materials in a location designated by library staff (table carrel outside the Rare Books and Special Collections office or in the Customer Service Area).

Request and Use Form

Handling Rare Books and Special Collections Materials

To help library staff serve users better and to protect and preserve our special materials, we ask that you follow the instructions shown below.  These procedures are designed to preserve our rare books and special collections for future generations at the University of Richmond.

Handling and use procedures:

  • Your hands must be clean and dry.  Please wash and dry your hands in the sink area outside the office before using rare  books.  Special gloves are also available when using the materials.
  • No food, drink, tobacco products, chewing gum, or hand lotion are allowed near the special books.
  • Only pencils may be used for note taking.  Please keep the area clear of pens of any sort.
  • Laptop computers may also be used for note taking.
  • Do not lean on the books or rest anything (other books, note pads, etc.) on the rare books. If the rare book is tightly bound, do not force the book open.  If you need a prop for the book or cannot manage to keep it open for note taking, please ask for assistance.
  • Tracing from rare books is prohibited.  Should you desire a photocopy, you must ask the library staff and arrangements will be made to have copies made for you providing that the book or manuscript is not too fragile and/or copyright and other conventions are not prohibited.  Digital cameras may be used if approved by library staff.
  • Turn pages carefully, and do not rest an open book face down.
  • If you encounter uncut pages in the books, contact the library staff for assistance and do not cut them yourself.
  • Notify the library staff immediately if you discover damaged books or materials.
  • When finished using the maerials, please return the materials to the main Information and Assistance Desk or staff in the Rare Books Room.  This will ensure that the materials are safely returned to their appropriate location in the library.

Thank you for your cooperation.  Please contact a staff member if you have any questions.