Onsite Use of Special Collection Materials

Plan ahead. Most of our archival materials are offsite and require notice of at least 7 business days. If you plan to request 10 boxes or more, please contact us directly at special.collections@umich.edu at least 2 weeks in advance of your visit.

While using materials in the reading room, you can capture images using your camera or phone. There may be some exceptions, especially with fragile materials.

Get started

To get started, make sure you’re registered as a researcher to access our materials

See our introduction to finding special collections and archival materials if it’s new to you.

How to place requests

We use a few different tools to describe our varied collections. How you place a request depends on where you found the item. 

Library Search or Subject Vertical File

From U-M Library Catalog Search or the Labadie Collection Subject Vertical File listing:

  1. Select Request this, which will take you to our reading room request form. Log in if needed.
  2. Complete the form, including your visit date, and select Submit.

Online finding aid

From the online finding aid you’re interested in:

  1. Select Request Material From This Collection for Use in the Special Collections Research Center. Log in if needed
  2. The finding aid will appear in your request account with a list of checkboxes. Select Expand All to see a detailed content list for each box and select the respective checkbox to request it. If a single box number is repeated in the selection list, it only needs to be checked once.
  3. Complete the form, including your visit date, and select Submit.
Questions? Contact us at special.collections@umich.edu.

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