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Request Access to Special Collections at UMD

A guide to help researchers request material from our Archival Collections database, WorldCatUM, and our Classic Catalog.

Onsite Access

Request Onsite Access to Special Collections

To view materials from Special Collections in-person in the reading room:

Submit all requests for materials you want to view in-person at least 3 business days in advance of your appointment to allow us time to place materials on hold for your visit. 

Materials located offsite and unprocessed collections that require screening will take additional time to make available in the reading room. Allow extra time for these requests.

If you cannot visit the reading room in-person, you can request copies of Special Collections materials to be delivered electronically in your Special Collections Account.

How to Submit a Request Onsite Access to Special Collections Materials

How to Request Material from the Archival Collections Database

  • Locate items in the Archival Collections Database
     
  • Click "Request Box”, located at the top of the record.
    • If the "Request Box" option is not available, the collection may be unprocessed.
    • Material from unprocessed collections will require staff assistance request.
    • Contact us to request material from an unprocessed collection.
       
  • Click “Request Box” on the following page, which will display the entire contents of the box to confirm your selection.
    • Most archival collections are requested at the box level.
    • Make note of specific folders you want to view from each box.
       
  • You will be prompted to sign in to your Special Collections Account.
     
  • A list of your requests will appear. Selecting the request(s) you would like to view in the reading room.
     
  • Choose a date for your visit.
    • Selecting a date for a request does not schedule a reading room appointment.
  • Click “Submit Information”.
    • You can also choose to keep your request as an "Unsubmitted Request" in your account and save it to submit at a later date.
    • This is helpful if you have already reached your limit of 12 active requests or if you do not have a firm date for your visit.

If you are unable to visit in-person and would like to request copies remotely, select "Request Copy" and complete the order information.

How to Request Material from UMD Discover

  • Locate items in UMD Discover 
     
  • Material located in Special Collections and University Archives will have one of the following locations:
    • UMCP HBK Maryland Room
    • UMCP Severn Library Special Collections
    • UMCP Severn Library University Archives
       
  • Select "Request from Special Collections."
  • The request information will appear on screen.
    • Include any additional helpful information for special collections staff in the "Special Requests/Questions" field of the form.
       
  • Choose a date for your visit.
    • Selecting a date for a request does not schedule a reading room appointment.
  • Click “Submit Request”.

If you are unable to visit in-person and would like to request copies remotely, select "Request Duplication" at the top of the request form and complete the order information.

How to Submit a Manual Request

  • Manual requests are only for unprocessed collections. If you are unsure whether to submit a manual request, contact us.
     
  • Log into your Special Collections Account.
     
  • Select “New Manual Reading Room Request” under "New Requests" in the menu.
    • If you are unable to visit the reading room in-person and want to request copies, select "New Manual Duplication Order."
       
  • Complete the following fields:
    • Title
       
    • Is This An Unprocessed Collection?
      • Unprocessed collections do not have a full finding aid published online, and you may have been reviewing preliminary inventories for list of boxes in the collection.
      • Unprocessed collections may take additional time to make available in the reading room. 
         
    • Library
      • Choose “Maryland Room” for materials from Special Collections and University Archives in Hornbake Library.
      • Choose "Special Collections in the Performing Arts" for materials from the Special Collections in the Michelle Smith Performing Arts Library.
         
    • Call Number/Accession Number
      • If you are requesting archival material, put “n/a”, unless otherwise instructed by special collections staff.
         
    • Volume/Box
      • If you are requesting archival material, please list the series and box number.
        • Most archival collections are pulled at the box level for most collections.
        • If you request a folder, the entire box will be retrieved.
      • If you are requesting a publication, indicate the volume number.
      • Request one box/volume per request.
         
    • Location
      • Add "cposs" for collections located offsite at Severn Library.
         
    • Special Requests/Questions?
      • Include additional information about this order for special collections staff.
         
    • Schedule your visit by selecting a date for your visit.
    • Click “Submit Request.
       
  • Start a new "New Manual Reading Room Request" to request onsite use of additional boxes/items.