TUSC Welcomes Your Visit

Tulane University Special Collections transitioned to our new, online appointment system in late 2021, and just over a year later our feedback has been overwhelmingly positive. We are currently open to the public Monday through Friday from 10am to 12pm and 1pm to 4pm. We know that all of the rules can be a little confusing, especially to first-time visitors, so the following steps will explore the process of making appointments and preparing for your visit to TUSC. 

Before making an appointment, it is important to do a little background research about TUSC so you will be prepared before your visit. Start by checking our website to find out what materials we have, our hours of operation, and our rules that visitors must follow. You should also search for any finding aids or inventories that are available online, as these can help you determine what materials you want to view.  

Once you have done your research, it is time to contact us and make an appointment. TUSC requires visitors to make appointments up to 24 hours in advance, so it is important to plan ahead. Appointments can be made directly through our website, but feel free to contact us via phone or email if you need help. Be sure to provide as much information as possible about the materials you want to view, including the collection identifier, collection name and box numbers for archival material, or the author, title and call number for rare books. Once you have clicked “submit” on your appointment request, TUSC staff will review your request, and you will receive an email confirmation of your appointment. If you don’t receive a confirmation, please reach out to us directly by email. We rarely deny an appointment, but if for any reason we cannot accommodate your request on your chosen day, we will let you know and work with you to reschedule. 

Before your appointment, you should review our rules and procedures. TUSC, like most special collections, has strict rules about what visitors can bring into the reading room, such as bags, pens, and food and drink. Lockers are provided for use in our reading room so your belongings will be safe and in view while you are here. On the day of your appointment, be sure to arrive on time. At TUSC we have limited hours and staff and may not be able to accommodate late (or early) arrivals. When you arrive, check in with the librarian at the reference desk. We will then provide you with any necessary materials, such as pencils, paper and book cradles. Then we will show you to your table, where your materials are ready and waiting for you.  

Once you are in the reading room, it is important to follow our rules and procedures. This may include wearing gloves when handling photographs, using only pencils for note-taking, and refraining from taking flash photographs. If you have any questions or concerns, be sure to ask us for assistance. We’re happy to help! 

Finally, it is important to remember that the materials at TUSC and in all special collections are often rare and unique. They may be fragile or irreplaceable, and it is your responsibility to handle them with care. Avoid bending, folding, leaning on or otherwise damaging the materials, and be sure to alert a member of our staff if you notice any problems or issues. 

Visiting TUSC can be a fascinating and rewarding experience, and we look forward to welcoming Tulane students, faculty and staff, and visiting researchers from all over the world to our space. However, it is important to plan ahead, make an appointment, and follow the rules and procedures of TUSC. By doing so, you can make the most of your visit and ensure that the materials are preserved for future generations to enjoy. 

Published: 4/7/2023

reading room