Butler University's Department of Special Collections, Rare
Books & University Archives is located on the third floor of
the Irwin Library. It is home to a number of special collections,
including the William F. Charters South Seas Collection, the Harold
E. Johnson Jean Sibelius Collection, the Eliza Blaker Collection,
the Etheridge Knight Collection, the Gaar Williams/Kin Hubbard
Collection, and the Jeanette Siron Pelton Botanical Print
Collection. It is open to the public and provides reference and
Materials do not circulate; researchers must use them in the
reading area. Special Collections and Rare Books Librarian Sally
Childs-Helton will be happy to answer any questions about the
collections; she may be reached during business hours at (317)
940-9265, or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The room is open Monday-Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., and by
appointment. It is closed weekends, holidays, and for scheduled
library closings. Summer hours will be posted. Please call ahead if
you are coming from a distance to verify that we will be open.
Butler faculty, staff, and students will be asked to show a
current university ID each time they use the collections.
Researchers not affiliated with Butler will be asked to fill out a
registration form (good for one year) and show a photographic ID
for verification. On subsequent visits during the year, you will be
asked to show your photographic ID.
Place personal property, including coats, briefcases, purses,
backpacks, book bags, computer cases, cellular telephones, and
personal audio equipment, in the designated area. Food and drink
are not permitted in the room. Only materials needed for research,
including pencils, paper, and research notes, may be kept with you.
Any personal property brought into the room is subject to
inspection upon leaving.
Most rare books, special collections, and university archives
materials are accessible through the on-line catalog. Collection
guides are available for some special collections and for the
university archives either on-line or in the library. Staff members
can direct you to the appropriate tools and aid you in finding what
Please fill out a request form, available at the service desk,
and give it to the staff member on duty. Since this is a closed
stack area, staff will page your materials from the stacks and
bring them to the reading area. Please return your materials to the
staff member at the service desk. Materials will be paged until
4:30 p.m.; all materials must be returned to the service desk by
4:50 p.m. for reshelving.
Your cooperation in following the procedures below is necessary
and appreciated to help preserve materials for future generations
- Food and drink are not permitted in the room.
- Use only pencils to take notes; pens are not allowed.
- Handle all materials with care, and follow the instructions
given to you by staff. Keep books, bound volumes, manuscripts, and
photographs flat on the table. Request book props or stands if you
need to hold materials at a more comfortable viewing angle. Except
for special weights provided, do not lay any objects on top of
library materials. Turn items or pages carefully.
- Maintain all materials in the exact order received.
- You may not trace, scan, or photograph materials.
- You will be asked to use white cotton gloves when using some
materials, including unsleeved photographs and negatives.
Use of Equipment
You may use laptop computers and hand-held audio recorders to
take notes. Because of copyright, preservation, and noise
considerations, you may not use video cameras or videotaping
equipment, still cameras, scanners, cellular phones, or personal
audio equipment in the room.
Reproduction of Materials
Reproducing materials by photocopying, scanning, or photographic
processes can be extremely damaging to rare and fragile materials.
We encourage researchers to allow sufficient time to take notes,
since this is the least damaging way to carry the information home.
You may, however, ask for a reproduction request form at the
We reserve the right to refuse a reproduction request if filling
the request would result in damage to the materials being copied or
would violate copyright law. Generally, nothing will be reproduced
in its entirety, and no more than fifty pages or one-third of a
collection will be reproduced, whichever is smaller. Reproductions
are for private study, scholarship, or research use only.
Staff completes all reproduction work. Requests will be filled
as quickly as possible, based on staff time and equipment access.
If necessary, you may be asked to pick up your copies the next day
or have them mailed to you.
- 10 cents per page for photocopying (Butler students, faculty,
- 25 cents per page for photocopying (researchers not affiliated
- Scanning and photographic fees:
Prices will vary depending upon the specifics of the request and
market prices, since portions of these services are done
out-of-house. Please discuss your needs with the archivist.
Publication of Collection Materials
"Publish" means the distribution of, or intent to distribute,
any number of copies of a work, either by sale or for free. If your
use of materials may result in a published work, please inform the
staff member at the service desk. You will be asked to complete a
"Permission to Publish Contract." Please note that researchers must
obtain all copyright clearances before publishing.
Last updated June 28, 2012.