Reading Room Rules

Because of the nature of the primary resources located in this department, the following user guidelines are provided. If you have questions, please ask for assistance.

Reading Room Reopening

In accordance with the library’s staged reopening plans, Special Collections & Archives will be reopening its Reading Room for those wanting to consult our collections.

In STAGE 2, beginning July 20, we will be welcoming members of the campus community including students, staff, and faculty.

Access to the Reading Room will require visitors to adhere the following policies until further notice:

  • Reading Room visits will be by appointment only.
  • Patrons are required to consult with us virtually or by phone prior to their visit, during which time we may determine if the request can be fulfilled digitally.
  • Face masks are required in the Reading Room at all times.
  • Only two visitors are allowed in the Reading Room at a time.
  • Visitors are expected to observe established seating arrangements within the Reading Room.

Appointment hours are between 9am and 4pm Monday through Friday.

Please contact or 208-885-0845 to make an appointment. We ask for at least two business days of notice so we may do any preparatory searching and retrieving in advance.

Note: Library staff reserve the right to close the Reading Room or make alternative accommodations for health and safety reasons even if an appointment has been made.

General Guidelines

  • The Reading Room is reserved for the use of Special Collections and Archives materials.
  • Please be courteous and set cell phones and other sound devices to quiet mode.
  • All food and beverages are prohibited.
  • All personal items (backpacks, coats, purses, books, and other personal articles) are not to be kept at the research tables. Storage space is available in the cubbies along the side of the room.
  • Please respect fellow researchers and be mindful of noise and space.
  • Please check with staff before scanning or photographing any materials.

Research Procedures

  • Laptops, notebooks, and pencils are allowed at research tables. Pens are not allowed.
  • We provide two computers, two flatbed scanners, and digital camera stand for use by researchers.
  • Cell phones with cameras, digital cameras, and scanners are permitted with staff approval.
  • Materials must be handled with extreme care to ensure their preservation. Turn pages carefully, make no marks on the materials, rest no books or other objects on the face or surface of items used. Restrictions may be set to protect fragile or damaged materials.
  • Please use outcards to preserve the existing order and arrangement of all unbound materials. Please use one box and one folder out at a time. Notify a staff member if material is found out of order.
  • We reserve the right to deny a reproduction request because of copyright regulations, privacy rights, donor-imposed regulations or other rights related issues.
  • Permission to examine Special Collections holdings is granted for reference purposes only. This does not include permission to publish, exhibit, broadcast or electronically disseminate the materials consulted by the researcher. Permission for these uses must be obtained by separate agreement and possible payment of fees with the department of Special Collections and Archives. In giving permission to copy, quote from, or publish, Special Collection does not surrender its own right to publish such material or grant permission to others to do so.
  • Before leaving, straighten all papers and folders inside boxes. Return all materials to staff. As a security measure, the department reserves the right to inspect all research materials and personal articles.

The copyright law of the United States (Title 17, USC) governs the making of photocopies or other reproductions of copyrighted materials. Under certain conditions specified in the law, archives and libraries are authorized to furnish a photocopy or reproduction. One of these specified conditions is that the photocopy or reproduction is not to be “used for any purpose other than private study, scholarship or research.” If a user later uses a photocopy or reproduction for purposes in excess of “fair use,” they may be liable for copyright infringement. This institution reserves the right to refuse a copying order if, in its judgment, fulfillment of the order would involve violation of copyright law.