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Boatwright Memorial Library

Galvin Rare Book Room, Special Collections, and Book Arts: Using Rare Books and Special Collections

Brief introduction to the University of Richmond's Galvin Rare Book Room, Special Collections, and Book Arts

Requesting and Using Rare Books & Special Collections Materials

Galvin Rare Book Room & Special Collections 

The Galvin Rare Book Room is currently open by appointment only.  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. Digital images may be taken subject to copyright, and scanning of materials may be requested. 

Rare Books & Special Collections Materials Request Form

Rare Books & Special Collections Instruction Request 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.
  • 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 materials, please return the materials to the staff in the Rare Books Room. 

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



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