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What are Special Collections and Archives?

 

Special Collections include rare books, manuscripts, papers, clothing and other items that are of unique value and importance to the study of material culture, history, literature and other subjects. Often items in the Special Collections are fragile, rare, and valuable. Because of this, they do not circulate like the main library collection and must be used only in the Simms Reading Room. Particular strengths of the Furman's Special Collections include the history of the printed book, American history from the 18th century to the present, Greenville and Upcountry South Carolina history, and women's and gender issues.

Archives are the collections of historical records that are established to document the lives of individuals and organizations. Archives are comprised of primary source documents which have been accumulated over a lifetime. The University Archives was established to preserve the history of Furman University. Some of the materials found in the University Archives include the records of campus offices, departments, and individuals, interviews, photographs, recordings, copies of University publications (Bonhomie, The Paladin, The Echo, etc.), scrapbooks, the records of Greenville Woman's College, materials related to student organizations and academic pursuits, and much more.