Access the Collections

What to Expect During Your Visit

Archives and Special Collections materials are non-circulating and must be viewed inside the Special Collections reading room. Materials are available by prior appointment. We recommend providing as much advance notice as possible to ensure staff availability.

All visitors must sign in and provide photo identification (NYU ID is acceptable), which will be held for the duration of your visit.

First-time Visitors

First-time visitors must complete a Reader’s Application Form upon arrival in the Reading Room, for statistical and security purposes.

Viewing Materials

Archives and Special Collections functions on a closed-stacks system; after you’ve requested materials, they will be retrieved by a staff member and brought to you, one item at a time, at your reading-room table. You may bring paper, a pencil, and a laptop/tablet to the table with you; all other items must be placed in the provided lockers prior to taking your seat.

Requesting Printed Material

You will need to fill out a Special Collections call slip; to expedite the retrieval process, please have the item's call number ready in advance. Each book you request requires its own call slip. For archival material or audiovisual items, you will need to fill out a manuscript request form. Call slips and manuscript request forms are available in the reading room.

Requesting Photocopies

Photocopies of unbound materials are available by request; please complete a photocopy request form during your visit and your copies will be prepared by a library staff member. Books and other bound items cannot be photocopied due to the risk of damage to the binding. With librarian approval, self-shot digital photography is permitted. All requests will be considered on a case-by-case basis with respect to the fragility of the item, as well as any copyright or privacy restrictions.

Short-term Loans

Special Collections materials may be loaned for teaching and/or exhibition on a case-by-case basis. Interested parties should contact the department at with any inquiries.

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