The University of Alabama Libraries Special Collections collects materials of enduring historical value in the following areas to advance the research, teaching, and instruction missions of The University of Alabama:

  1. Alabama history and culture, 18th century – present
  2. Exploration and settlement of territory in the Gulf of Mexico, 16th century – early 19th century
  3. Southern history and culture, 17th century – present
  4. Civil War and Reconstruction
  5. Slavery, abolition, and emancipation
  6. African American history with special emphasis on the Civil Rights Movement
  7. Latin America, with special emphasis on Brazil and Mexico
  8. University of Alabama history, 1831 – present

The following protocols and procedures apply to all items offered for and acquired by donation to The University of Alabama Libraries Special Collections:

  • Prospective donors to Special Collections should consult University Libraries’ (UL) general policies on collections and gifts to familiarize themselves with UL guidelines. Items offered for donation to Special Collections may be a better fit for the main collection. The final decision as to where items best belong rests with library administration.
  • Special Collections staff will evaluate items offered for donation based on their content and condition.
  • Prospective donors will submit an inventory or description of the items prior to their examination by Special Collections staff.
  • Prospective donors will identify copyright holders of the materials or show they have made a good faith search to identify them.
  • Special Collections does not accept collections which are comprised mainly of news clippings, magazine articles, or similar copyrighted materials, as well as photocopies.
  • Special Collections does not accept items which duplicate items we already have through subscription in the general collection.
  • At the time of donation, donors who are not the copyright holders of collections which contain mostly copyrighted materials will provide a license from the copyright holder(s) granting permission to digitize donated materials to provide access online and to researchers.
  • At the time of donation, donors who are the copyright holders will convey the copyright or grant permission to Special Collections to digitize materials to provide access online and to researchers.
  • Releases are required from the performers of musical, dramatic, or other artistic productions and from interviewers and subjects of oral histories granting permission to provide access online and to researchers.
  • Donors of manuscripts, personal papers, rare books, maps, photographs or other graphic materials, and materials related to The University of Alabama should contact:

Michael A. Arthur
Senior Associate Dean and Professor
The University of Alabama
Box 870266
Tuscaloosa, Alabama 35487

Revised: 1/29/2024. JR.