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Personal Items

Coats, briefcases, book bags, computer cases, and other belongings must be stored in lockers provided by the Special Collections and Archives. Pencils, paper and personal computers may be brought into the reading room. ONLY PENCILS ARE PERMITTED IN THE READING ROOM. Electrical outlets in the reading room are available for personal computers at the patron’s own risk, the Special Collections and Archives assumes no responsibility for damaged equipment. The staff reserves the right to search personal materials as the individual leaves the research area.

Food and Beverages

To best protect out materials, food and beverages, including water, are prohibited. 

Cell Phones

In the interest of maintaining an atmosphere conducive to research, patrons will be asked to set communication devices to silent or vibrate while in the reading room. Patrons may make calls in the hallway. Patrons may not remove archival or manuscript materials from the reading room if they leave to take a call. Staff reserve the right to search any papers that the patron attempts to remove from the reading room. Patrons must gain permission from the Curator before using cameras of any sort, including cell phone cameras. All requests to duplicate archival or manuscript materials with personal equipment will be considered on an individual basis.

Retrieval of Materials

Materials may be requested by filling out a request form and submitting it to a staff member. The materials will be brought to the patrons in the reading room. In the event that a patron plans to consult the same materials the next day, staff will hold it off the shelves a maximum of 24 hours before returning it to the stacks.

Handling Materials

Only pencils may be used in the reading room and will be provided if needed. Materials from the ESU Special Collections and Archives may be used only in the reading room at the tables provided. Archival and manuscript materials must be handled with care at all times. We ask that you do not lean on, write on, fold, or handle materials in a way that may damage them. Cotton gloves will be required when viewing photographs and handling delicate items.

Photocopy Services

Forms for requesting photocopies or microfilm copies are available from the Reading Room Attendant or Reading Room Supervisor. Photocopies from unbound print sources will be made while patrons wait at a charge of 10 cents per page. Patrons may either make copies of microfilm articles as they view them, or staff will do it for them at a charge of 10 cents per page.

Patrons must pay for photocopies in cash; however, ESU staff and faculty may charge them to a division of ESU by providing staff with a division account number. Photocopies will be made in accordance with Copyright Law; single copies will be provided for the patron’s personal reference use. The photocopy may not be further reproduced. Supplying a photocopy is not authorization to publish. Written permission of the copyright owner(s) is required for any transmission or reproduction of protected items beyond that allowed by fair use. If possible, ESU Special Collections and Archives may provide information about copyright owners and other restrictions. ESU Special Collections and Archives may not own rights to material in its collections. It is the patron’s obligation to determine and satisfy copyright or other use restrictions when publishing or otherwise distributing materials found in the Special Collections and Archives.

Bound materials and fragile items, as well as any materials with legal or contractual restrictions, may not be copied. The staff will take reasonable care in making copies, but assumes no responsibility for quality of reproduction.

Restricted Materials

The use of certain documents may be restricted by statute or by the office of origin/donor. For the protection of our holdings, the archives staff also reserves the right to restrict the use of materials that are not arranged or are in the process of being arranged, materials of exceptional value, and fragile items. Holds Materials may be held at the desk a maximum of 24 hours; after this period of time they will be returned to the stacks.


In citing materials from the ESU Special Collections and Archives, the form should be as follows:

Collection number, collection title, box number, folder number, Emporia State University Special Collections and Archives, Emporia State University.

Please credit the ESU Special Collections and Archives for information that you obtain from our collections. Thank you.