6. Libraries and Other Academic Resources
Center for American History. The Center for American History is a special collections library, archive, and museum that facilitates research and sponsors programs on the historical development of the United States. The center supports research and education by acquiring, preserving, and making accessible research collections and by sponsoring exhibitions, conferences, fellowships, and grant-funded initiatives.
The Center for American History houses more than 70,000 linear feet of archives and manuscripts, 170,000 volumes, 36,000 maps, 5,500 historic newspaper titles, three million photographs, and extensive collections of broadsides, recorded music, oral history, and ephemera documenting the history of the United States. Research collection strengths are the history of the State of Texas, the South, the Southwest, and the Rocky Mountain West, congressional history, media history, and other specific national topics.
The center's divisions are the Research and Collections Division in Sid Richardson Hall Unit 2 on the University campus in Austin; the Sam Rayburn Library and Museum, in Bonham; Winedale, a complex of historic structures and modern facilities located near Round Top; the John Nance Garner Museum in Uvalde, Texas.
Specific holdings include an 1849 daguerreotype of the Alamo, the earliest datable photograph taken in Texas; more than thirty-five hundred individual collections of personal papers and official records of individuals, families, groups, and businesses significant to the history of Texas, such as the papers of Stephen F. Austin, Lorenzo de Zavala, and Sam Houston; the Natchez Trace Collection, more than four hundred feet of printed and manuscript records documenting life and culture in the lower Mississippi River Valley from 1790 to 1900; the papers of more than forty-five former and present members of the Texas congressional delegation; the Walter Cronkite Papers; the James Farmer Papers; and the photographic archives of photojournalists David Hume Kennerly, Dirck Halstead, Diana Walker, Wally McNamee, and P. F. Bentley.
The center's James Stephen Hogg Reading Room, located in Sid Richardson Hall Unit 2, is open from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm Monday through Saturday. A reference staff is available to guide access to collections, and bibliographic descriptions of all center books and newspapers, as well as many archival collections, are included in UTNetCAT. Holdings are stored in closed stacks and are room-use only. Many center collections are stored off-site and require forty-eight hours notice for retrieval for use at the center. In addition, the sound and film collections are available for use by appointment only. For more information, call (512) 495-4515 or visit the Center for American History Web site.
Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center. The Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center is one of the world's foremost institutions for literary and cultural research. It offers resources in a number of disciplines and periods, but its principal strength is in its collections of twentieth-century British, American, and French literature. These collections contain not only rare editions but also prepublication materials, including authors' original notes, revised manuscripts, corrected galley proofs and page proofs, as well as letters and other personal and professional documents. Important collections exist also in photography, performing arts, and film. The center houses approximately one million books, thirty million manuscripts, five million photographs, and over one hundred thousand works of art.
Book collections include the libraries of James Joyce and Evelyn Waugh; the Wolff Collection of Nineteenth-Century Fiction, the VanderPoel Collection of Charles Dickens, three Shakespeare First Folios, and the Pforzheimer Collection of English Literature, 1475-1700. The Ransom Center's most valuable book is the Gutenberg Bible. Writers particularly well represented in the center's manuscript collections include Graham Greene, Lillian Hellman, D. H. Lawrence, Carson McCullers, Anne Sexton, George Bernard Shaw, Isaac Bashevis Singer, Tom Stoppard, and Tennessee Williams.
The Gernsheim History of Photography Collection includes the works of more than twelve hundred photographers and the first photograph ever taken. Large collections of theatrical designs, film manuscripts, and other materials are found in the Norman Bel Geddes collection, the David O. Selznick collection, and the Gloria Swanson archive.
Art collections include drawings, prints, and paintings of and by English, American, and French writers, including E. E. Cummings, D. H. Lawrence, and Jean Cocteau, as well as works of art by Frida Kahlo, Eric Gill, Georges Rouault, and others.
Music collections include opera librettos from 1600 to 1920; manuscript scores of French composers Ravel, Roussel, Dukas, and Debussy; the archives of American composer Paul Bowles; and the collection of jazz historian Ross Russell.
The Ransom Center invites use by scholars engaged in research in the humanities. University faculty members, staff members, and students are eligible to use the collections, as are other researchers. The Ransom Center is a noncirculating library. Researchers wishing to consult the collections must present a photo ID, complete an application form, and agree to abide by the Ransom Center's rules and regulations.
Ransom Center books and many archival materials are represented in the on-line catalog of the General Libraries. Access to manuscript collections is provided through the card catalog or finding aids, some of which are on-line. Photography, film, performing arts, and art materials are partially represented in on-line finding aids, but users should also consult the appropriate curator to locate materials in these areas.
Patrons may access Ransom Center materials in the second-floor Reading and Viewing Rooms. The world's first photograph, taken in 1826, and the Gutenberg Bible, the first book printed with movable type, are on display in the center's lobby, and the first-floor galleries feature rotating exhibitions of items from the literary, photographic, and art collections.
Hours of operation are available through the center's Web site, or by calling (512) 471-8944.
Law library. The Joseph D. Jamail Center for Legal Research: Tarlton Law Library supports the research and curricular needs of the faculty and students of the School of Law, as well as the research needs of the University community, members of the bar, and the public.
With more than one million volumes, the Tarlton library is one of the largest academic law libraries in the country. In addition to a comprehensive collection of primary and secondary legal materials, the library has a broad interdisciplinary collection from the social sciences and humanities. Special collections include extensive foreign and international law resources, more than one million pieces of microform materials in a media collection, the papers of former United States Supreme Court Justice Tom Clark, feature films and fiction related to law and popular culture, and, in the library's Gavel Room, a special collection of recent winners of the American Bar Association's prestigious Silver Gavel Award. The library is a depository for United States, European Union, and Canadian government documents.
In addition to printed matter, the library offers law students access to LEXIS and WESTLAW, the major on-line computer-assisted legal research services. The library also provides access to a variety of legal and nonlegal electronic databases and information services. The library's Computer Learning Center provides law students a networked environment of eighty IBM-compatible personal computers with word processing, legal research applications, and laser printers. Students also have access to a wireless network for personal laptop computers. A Web site maintained by the center staff offers a number of unique resources, including a searchable database of the tables of contents from recent issues of law reviews.
As a member of the Research Libraries Group (RLG) and the Online Computer Library Center (OCLC), the library contributes data to the Research Libraries Information Network and to WorldCat. Through these networks, the library has immediate access to the collections of other major research libraries throughout the country. The library's own on-line public access catalog, TALLONS, provides immediate access to all of the collection. TALLONS offers users a variety of search strategies and provides information on the location of material, material being ordered for the collection, latest receipt information for serials, and circulation status of all material. Off-site access to TALLONS is available through telnet and Web interfaces. TALLONS may also be used in conjunction with UTNetCAT, the General Libraries on-line catalog of the holdings of the various libraries on campus.
More than six hundred paintings, other objets d'art, prints, documents, antique quilts, rugs, and pieces of furniture from the Elton M. Hyder Jr. and Martha Rowan Hyder Collection enhance the ambiance of the library and create a culturally enriching environment for library patrons and staff.
Because legal research can be technically demanding, members of the library's public services staff provide individual and classroom instruction in the use of the library's materials.
The Lyndon Baines Johnson Library and Museum, located on the eastern edge of the campus, is operated by the National Archives and Records Administration. Not part of the University library system, this library is a rich resource for scholars studying the twentieth century. Faculty members and students also have access to other public and private libraries in the Austin area, including several that focus on special areas of interest.
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17 August 2004. Office of the Registrar
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