Frequently Asked Questions

How do I reserve the glass display cases on the 4th floor for my exhibit?
What is Special Collections’ policy on food, drink, and cell phones?

No food, drink, or tobacco products are allowed in Special Collections in order to preserve the life of the collections. Cell phone usage is prohibited to provide a quiet study area.

How can I schedule the Rhinehart Rare Books and Special Collections Room for my class or event?

To schedule the Rhinehart Room, please contact Melody Campbell at 828-262-2188 or

Are there group study rooms in Special Collections?

There are no group study rooms in Special Collections or on the 4th Floor, but rooms are available on other floors of the Library. For more information on how to available group study rooms, see Group Study Rooms / Library Multimedia Rooms.

I have a question, but do not know who in Special Collections to contact.

Researchers may contact Special Collections by telephone, email, fax, or U.S. Mail.  Please see Ask a Question.

What are the hours of Special Collections?

Please see the hours calendar.

Can I check out books, CDs, and movies from Special Collections?

Many Open Stacks books, videos, and sound recordings may be checked out by patrons with valid cards. Materials marked "For Library Use Only" do not circulate. Serials, microforms, newspaper clippings, and items in the Closed Collection do not circulate. Circulating books are available for Interlibrary Loan. For information about who may borrow materials, please check Borrowing Materials and Loan Periods. To learn how to obtain a Community Borrowers card, see Community Borrowers card

Can I make photocopies in Special Collections?

 A public photocopier is available in the Cratis Williams Reading Room for making duplications from Open Stacks’ material, including newspaper clippings files, books, and serial publications. A microfilm reader-printer is also available in the Open Stacks for making copies from microfilm.

All duplication of Closed Collection material will be performed by Special Collections staff only when it can be done without injury to the material and when it does not violate donor agreements or copyright laws. Duplication requests for Closed Collection material can be submitted by completing an Application for Duplication of Closed Collection Materials form. The researcher is solely responsible for the use made of any material secured from the University and liable for any infringement of copyright.

Do you give tours of Special Collections?

Yes. A tour of Special Collections may include the Cratis Williams Reading Room, the Dougherty Reading Room, and Rhinehart Rare Book Room. Please contact Dean Williams at 828-262-4041 or or Greta Browning at for more information.

How do I schedule a class or orientation?

Sessions are available for undergraduate and graduate courses and can be tailored to meet the needs of the instructor. Please give at least 3 weeks advance notice to avoid scheduling conflicts and to allow us time to prepare. For more information, please contact Dean Williams at 828-262-4041 or or Greta Browning at 828-262-7974 or

Can I get help finding sources for my paper or project?

You may schedule a 30-minute appointment with a librarian or archivist to discuss research strategies pertaining to a specific project. This service is open to all researchers, with priority attention given to ASU students and faculty. Four days advanced notice is required. Please contact Dean Williams at 828-262-4041or or Greta Browning at for more information.

How do I make a donation?

The Special Collections is delighted to receive new items which complement our collection holdings. The Stock Car Racing Collection collects memoribilia and personal papers related to all forms of car racing. The University Archives and Records is actively seeking materials, such as scrapbooks and student organization documents, which illustrate student life at Appalachian State University. The W.L. Eury Appalachian Collection emphasizes the Appalachian Region with strengths in the social sciences, regional history, folklore, music, religion, genealogy, fiction, and African and Native Appalachia. Monetary donations are also welcome and are used for purchasing new items. Donors may be able to claim a charitable donation tax deduction for gifts to the collection. For more information, please see Donations. If you would like to discuss a donation, please see our Staff Directory.

Can I use a digital camera or scanner in the Closed Collection?

Researchers may use hand-held cameras to photograph materials as long as they a) do not use flash, b) do not disturb other researchers, c) agree to handle materials as outlined in the Researcher Registration agreement, and d) understand that these images are allowed for private research only. The researcher is solely responsible for the use made of any material secured from the University and liable for any infringement of copyright. Scanners are not allowed. For  more information, please see the Application for Duplication of Closed Collection Materials

What's in the Closed Collection?

The Closed Collection includes manuscripts (unpublished documents), university records, rare or unique books, printed materials, maps, oral histories, newspapers, scrapbooks, and photographs from the units of Special Collections: W.L. Eury Appalachian Collection, Rare Books and Manuscripts Collection, Stock Car Racing Collection, and University Archives and Records. See Using Archives, Manuscripts, and Rare Books for more information.

What’s in the Open Stacks?

 The Open Stacks includes publications, newspapers, clippings files, genealogical resources, videos, CDs, and maps for the Appalachian Collection and Stock Car Racing Collection. Many books, videos, DVDs, audiotapes, and CDs in the Open Stacks circulate and may be checked out by patrons with valid Library cards. Materials marked "For Library Use Only" do not circulate. 

Are any of the collections available online?

Some portions of collections are available online. For more information, see Digital Collections.

What is the difference between the University Records Center and University Archives?

University Archives is a permanent repository for University records identified as having lasting historical or administrative significance. The University Records Center, located in D.D. Dougherty Hall, is for the temporary storage of records designated for either the Archives or destruction. The office provides the necessary services and oversight to monitor a State-mandated, university-wide records-management program. Records held in the Records Center are still owned by the campus offices who created them, and can be retrieved by the creating office at any time. Records in University Archives are the property and responsibility of the Archives and are rarely removed.

For information about University Records Center transfers and holdings, please contact Mark Brittain at 828-262-4040.