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Special Collections Library/ Rare Books & Manuscripts

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Use the Online Contact Form available on the webiste for Special Collections

(608) 262-3243 -- Special Collections Reference Desk

Monday-Friday 9 a.m.-5 p.m.

Memorial Library - Room 976
728 State St.
Madison, WI 53706
Located on the 9th floor of Memorial Library and accessible using elevator #5 (marked “Special Collections | South Stacks”)

Has exhibits of rare books and art displays throughout the year.  Here is background information on the library:

Founded in 1946 with the acquisition of the Thordarson Collection of rare science and illustrated natural history books, the Department of Special Collections in Memorial Library, University of Wisconsin-Madison, now features one of the nation’s leading collections for history of science. Holdings in this field include the Duveen and Cole collections of alchemy and chemistry, Schadewald Collection on Pseudo-Science, Science and Religion Collection, and Albert Collection on optics and ophthalmology.

Other strengths include the Little Magazines Collection with runs of more than 7,000 experimental English-language literary magazines (ca. 1900-the present), the Cairns Collection of American Women Writers Before 1920, and numerous author collections. Literary materials also include the Renée Lang Collection on French and German literature, the Ellis Collection of German language textbooks, and an Icelandic literature collection, among others.

Our collections are housed in environmentally controlled vaults, and made available to readers in a supervised reading room. We welcome users of our collections, and ask that you understand that our special procedures are designed to ensure that these collections are available to you and other users for many decades to come. Special Collections materials do not circulate.  Public patrons and researchers are all welcome to view the collections.

Other collections of materials requiring special handling, and old, rare, or historical collections are available at other campus locations.

Owner:Information Services Specialist .Group:Campus and Visitor Relations
Created:2009-06-28 19:00 CDTUpdated:2020-02-21 15:44 CDT
Sites:Campus and Visitor Relations
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