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Special Collections Research & Access

Quick guide for WashU students, faculty and staff, as well as community researchers
search archive and manuscript finding aids

  • Search or browse the online FINDING AIDS for basic info & a brief inventory of the collection.
  • Most collections items are in their original format, and are not digitized.
  • Finding aids are online in ArchivesSpace  

  • Published maps, atlases, statistical summaries, and other rare or unusual books are described in the library catalog.
  • Items with location code: "Special Coll" or "Archive" are in Special Collections at Olin Library

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Contact Us


  • Most collections are not available online. 
  • You need to use the online finding aids (inventories describing the collections) to locate what you want to use.
  • All collections are in closed storage (closed stacks), and we need advanced notice to get them from storage.  Usually a day or two is enough, but sometimes longer (a week) is needed.