Where is the Rare Books Collection located?
Rare Books is part of the Special Collections and Archives Department at Z. Smith Reynolds Library. The Special Collections reference desk and reading room is located in the Reynolds (old) wing, on the west side of the 6th floor.
Who is allowed to use the Rare Books Collection?
The collection is open to all Wake Forest students, faculty, and visiting researchers. Rare Books is a non-circulating collection-- materials cannot be checked out and must stay in the Special Collections reading room. But students are encouraged to make use of the collections and to request materials for research. We can keep materials on hold in the collection if you need to return for more than one research session.
How do I find materials in the Rare Books Collection?
Special Collections monographs are listed in the ZSR library catalog. Rare Books is a closed-stack collection, which means that when you come in to use our materials, you'll fill out a request form listing titles and call numbers. Library staff will then retrieve your requested materials and deliver them to you in the reading room.
When is the Rare Books Collection open?
Regular hours for all of Special Collections and Archives are 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. So it's important to plan ahead if you want to use Rare materials in your research. If you have scheduling issues that make it genuinely impossible to complete your research during our regular hours, we can occasionally schedule special evening or weekend appointments. These appointments ususally require at least a week's advance notice -- so again, plan ahead!
Do I need to make an appointment to use Rare Books?
WFU students are not required to make an appointment to use our collections during regular hours, but we do encourage you to send us a list of requested books ahead of time if you know what you're going to need. You can used our online request form for this or any other queries you might have.
What sort of books do you have in the Rare Books Collection?
The Rare Books Collection at ZSR Library contains over 50,000 volumes dating from the 14th through the 21st centuries. Although the collection contains books in all subject areas in the liberal arts, the collection emphasis is American, Irish, and British authors of the eighteenth through twenty-first centuries (including African-American literature); and cultural and social history, with particular emphasis on North Carolina history and regional Americana. The collection also supports study in the area of the book arts and the history of printing. Each month a different book from the collection is highlighted in our Rare Book of the Month blog feature.