The Irwin Library opened for service on Sept. 9, 1963. It was dedicated in memory of William G. Irwin, a longtime benefactor of Butler University and member of the Board of Trustees. The building was designed by world-famous architect Minoru Yamasaki in a unique blending of Middle Eastern, Classical Greek, Italian Gothic and Japanese influences. Slender columns of pre-cast concrete, an expanse of arched windows, an atrium open to all three stories set off by cylindrical chandeliers and a skylight above, and a fountain and pool on the main level create a unique study environment.
Most of the physical collection is located in the lower level and on the second floor. Learn more about our physical collections. The Irwin Library provides seating at study tables, soft spaces, and group/individual study rooms. Study rooms must be reserved in advance and are only available to students. Irwin Library also hosts two privacy booths for those needing to make private phone calls. One is located just inside the front entrance and the other is located on the third floor right outside of CAT. Collaborative learning spaces are available to facilitate group work. There are three classrooms within Irwin Library:
- Great Books Room (GBR) & IL007: Available for classes, seminars, or academic meetings. Butler faculty who wish to use these spaces for classes should contact Registration and Records. For use other than classes, please request the space via the Calendar and Event Scheduling area of My.Butler. The Great Books Room is located on the first floor and IL007 is on the lower level.
- Library Instruction Lab: A room reserved for library instruction sessions. Butler faculty should contact their subject liaison librarian to arrange research visits for their classes.
Additional spaces on the first floor may also be available for events. Butler faculty can request the Collaborative Learning Space via the Calendar and Event Scheduling area of My.Butler. Please contact the Administrative Specialist for the Libraries with any questions.
Services to Patrons with Disabilities
Butler University Libraries are committed to providing equal access for patrons with disabilities. Our services include:
- Designated parking spaces for patrons with mobility impairment
- Accessible entrance and restrooms
- Elevator access to all levels
- Library orientation (for a scheduled appointment, contact Information Commons)
- Student Disability Services room (Room 217) is available to Butler students who are registered with Student Disability Services.
- Renewals via e-mail, telephone, or via the My Library Card
Technology & Equipment
Irwin Library provides access to desktop PCs and Macs in the lab on the first floor and throughout the building. Wireless access is available throughout the building. Print, copy, scan, and fax services are also available.
A turntable is available on a first come, first serve basis. It is located in the basement of Irwin (head down the main stairwell into the basement and it will be off to your left near a pillar).
The Rich Media Area located in the lab on the first floor of the library houses several specialized pieces of technology:
- Microfilm machine
- Wacom tablet
- VHS-to-DVD converter
- Blu-ray Player
Several of these workstations include larger or multiple computer screens and additional software. The microfilm machine can be used by all patrons, though guests will need to visit the Information Commons desk to gain access. The other equipment is reserved for Butler students, faculty, and staff. Priority will be given to those utilizing the technology for academic purposes.
This collection, assembled for the 50th anniversary of Irwin Library in 2013, includes photographs and documents from the building's planning, construction, and dedication, as well as photographs of Butler University's earlier campuses, and photographs of Irwin Library since its dedication. The library was designed by noted architect Minoru Yamasaki, and was officially dedicated in 1965.