Welcome to Special Collections & Archives

Due to Covid-19, we are open to the Wesleyan community by appointment only until further notice. Please contact sca@wesleyan.edu for more information or to schedule an appointment.


Special Collections & Archives is the home of the University’s archives, local history, manuscript and rare book collections, and is open to the Wesleyan community and the public. Our department holds and provides access to 10,000 linear feet of archival materials and over 45,000 rare books.

But there’s more to Special Collections & Archives than just our collections! 

  • We answer hundreds of reference questions every year
  • We offer class instruction and Personal Research Sessions for Wesleyan faculty and students
  • We host events, open houses, and exhibitions during Homecoming/Family Weekend, Reunion/Commencement, and throughout the year

Today's Hours

Library/SCA Blog

Open Doors: A Reflection on SC&A and National Poetry Month 2021

It was two years ago, April of 2019, that I first came to the Special Collections and Archives. I was a pre-frosh at WesFest, awkwardly wandering across campus with a wrinkled assortment of info sheets and campus maps. The disorienting stream of events and people left me with a nagging sense of worry: maybe Wesleyan wasn’t the place for me, maybe it was all too much.

Ephemera in Special Collections & Archives: Burnt Church

Ashes refer us to the fire, indexing words we cannot read.  They document what has been lost forever.  As light as air, ashes flutter with a breath, they degrade, they will not last. Ashes tell us what has survived, what can be rebuilt, and what is irrevocably altered.  Ashes bear witness.
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