Booth Family Center for Special Collections Use Policy
Before using Special Collections materials, you will be asked to read and sign the following policy.
- Please submit a photo I.D. to the reading room desk attendant; the I.D. will be held at the front desk while you are working in the reading room.
- Please help guarantee the security of our material by placing all personal property (including bags, computer cases and coats) in the lockers outside the reading room designated for the use of our researchers. Only pencils, paper, laptop or tablet computers, cameras and/or smartphones may be brought into the reading room.
- Georgetown University Library is not responsible for damage or theft of items stored in the lockers.
- No food (including chewing gum) or beverages are permitted in the reading room.
- Staff reserve the right to inspect all personal items (books, notebooks, notes, computer cases, etc.) on the arrival and/or departure of any researcher when use of Special Collections material is requested.
- No material will be pulled after 4:30 p.m.
- Please be aware that researchers will be under camera surveillance while using materials in the reading room.
- Please turn all devices to silent mode; phone calls are not permitted in the reading room.
Using Special Collections Materials
- Requests for access to material for any purpose involving pending litigation must be made through the office of University Counsel. Failure to disclose this intent may constitute a serious breach of legal ethics.
- Use NO INK when examining research material. Pencils are supplied upon request.
- Please wash and completely dry your hands before handling materials.
- Please do not hesitate to ask for assistance with handling or finding materials; we are eager to help!
- THREE boxes or FIVE volumes may be requested at a time. Depending on the amount of materials per folder and the value of the materials, staff may at their discretion serve only one box, one folder, or one volume/item at a time.
- Requests for materials located in the Vault must be approved by the relevant curator or the Department Head.
- Please use foam book supports for bound volumes unless otherwise instructed.
- When using materials housed in folders, please preserve the existing order of the material in each folder, and do not remove materials from the folder. Report any disarrangement discovered to staff.
- Please do not mark materials in any way either directly or by writing notes on top of them, or by resting books or other objects on the surface of the material. Staff will assist you with proper handling.
- When returning material, please replace all folders in proper numerical or alphabetical sequence in the box and replace box covers securely. Please ask for assistance when returning rare books and periodicals.
- Notify staff when leaving the reading room.
- Please return all material before leaving for the day.
- Staff must be alerted to boxes containing requests for reproductions. Individual folders containing reproductions requests must be replaced in the appropriate boxes.
- Photocopying and scanning cause permanent and cumulative damage. Reproduction requests will be granted only on a case-by-case basis depending on the condition of the material and possible copyright restrictions.
- Please refer to the Reproduction and Permissions Policy for the procedures for requesting reproductions, including taking one’s own photos, which requires permission. Staff must be alerted to boxes containing requests for reproductions. Individual folders containing reproduction requests must be replaced in the appropriate boxes.
- It is the researcher's responsibility to determine the owner of intellectual property rights, including copyright, and obtain permission from the owner before Special Collections materials are published or used commercially.
- While Library staff make every effort to remove confidential and other restricted information (including but not limited to personally identifiable information such as social security numbers, and information protected by FERPA or HIPAA), before serving manuscripts and Archives collections, researchers agree to alert staff if they encounter such material. Researchers also agree not to record, reproduce, or disclose restricted information that may be included in requested materials. Violation of this agreement may result in the loss of research or access privileges in the Georgetown University Library.
- Responsibility for Special Collections material is assumed by the researcher until all items have been returned to and accounted for by staff.
Researchers must agree to abide by the policies and regulations of the Georgetown University Library.