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About WashU Archives

This guide will help you navigate University Archives' more than 300 unique collections, most of which document the history of Washington University from 1853 to today. Other collections are related to 20th century St. Louis history.

Contact Info

contact special collections

Archive, Manuscript & Rare Book collections are accessed in Olin Library at the Special Collections reading room.

HOURS:  Monday - Friday 9:00-5:00 by appointment

LOCATION:  Olin Library, 1st floor, Danforth Campus


*collections stored offsite require advance notice for retrieval and use

Questions about a specific topic? Contact:

University Archives: Sonya Rooney

Rare Books: Cassie Brand

Manuscript: Joel Minor 

Local History: Miranda Rectenwald

Dowd Illustration Research Archive: interim curator

Film & Media Archive: Andy Uhrich

Social Justice & 19th Century Unitarian Church

Reverend William Greenleaf Eliot, a Unitarian Minister, co-founded Washington University and was involved in many reform efforts including:

  • Abolition and Emancipation
  • Women's Rights (voting, education, equality, against prostitution)
  • Laborer's Rights
  • Temperance Advocate (anti-alcohol)

Reverand Eliot's personal notebooks, correspondence, sermons, articles, phootgraphs, and more available to resarchers at University Archives.

For more information about the collection, and links to documents accessible on-line, see:

Social Justice: Equality and Civil Rights

Finding aids to materials in WU Special Collections:

Religion and LGBTQ Rights

Finding aids to materials in WU Special Collections:

Social Justice: Housing and Social Welfare

Finding aid to materials in WU Special Collections:

Social Justice: Science & Religion

Finding aid to materials in University Archives:

Social Justice: Protesting war and the draft

On-Line Primary Sources

Full-Text Databases:(Requires WUSTL log-in if accessed off campus):
Full-text materials available from various sources, freely available: