Archives at the University of Delaware:
Frequently Asked Questions
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Frequently asked questions
UARM = University Archives and Records Management
What are archives?
Archives are collections of records of the personal or business activities of people, businesses, organizations, and governments. These records take many forms, including correspondence, diaries, financial and legal documents, minute books, ephemera, photographs, and moving image and sound recordings. Such records are maintained for their continuing value to users as the documentary evidence of past events, necessary for the understanding history.
Are archives like libraries?
While archives and libraries have a lot in common and are frequently found together, they have somewhat different missions and functions. Libraries usually allow for material to circulate, and they collect mainly published works. Archives generally do not allow materials to leave the premises, and most of the materials collected are unique, irreplaceable, and unpublished.
What is a finding aid?
Finding aids are tools that facilitate discovery of information within a collection of records. They describe both the contents and context of an archival collection, giving the repository physical and intellectual control over the materials and assisting users in gaining access to the materials. Finding aids are the primary method of accessing information about any given collection and can include data such as indexes, inventories, guides, shelf and container lists, etc.
What is contained in the UARM collections?
UARM serves as the central repository for the administrative and business records of the University of Delaware. The collections document the history of the University, its predecessor institutions – including the Academy of Newark, Newark College, Delaware College, and the Women’s College of Delaware – its Board of Trustees, its constituent colleges, departments, and programs, and its administrative offices and units.
What record formats does UARM collect?
The collections include a wide variety of physical formats including business records, correspondence, photographs, slides, drawings, manuscript materials, printed materials (e.g., newspapers, magazines, brochures), scrapbooks, ephemera, memorabilia, posters, and blueprints. Also included are a variety of audio and video formats (e.g., cassettes, VHS tapes, DVDs) as well as a growing collection of digitized and born digital materials (e.g., Word documents, PDFs, JPEG and TIF files, etc.).
Does UARM have collections available for viewing online?
Currently, UARM does not offer access to its collections online. However, portions of the collections are digitized and will be made available. Please be aware that, given size and copyright considerations, it is impractical for us to digitize everything.
What are UARM’s hours of operation?
The reading room is open Monday through Friday, from 8:30 AM to 5:00 PM, excluding University holidays.
Where is UARM located?
UARM is an administrative unit located in 002 Pearson Hall at the University of Delaware. The street address for Pearson Hall is 125 Academy Street, Newark, DE 19716. More detailed directions to locate the office can be found here
. Please note that UARM is not part of University Library, Museum, and Press located in Morris Library on the Newark campus.
Who can use the UARM collections?
Students, faculty, staff, alumni, and the public are welcome to use the UARM collections. All researchers must abide by the reading room rules.
What are the reading room rules?
Rules for using the UARM collections include the following:
- Completion of a researcher registration for each visit to UARM.
- No use of pens while working with materials; use a pencil only.
- No food or drink permitted in the reading room.
- Handle materials with appropriate care.
More information and a complete listing of rules can be found here.
Is an appointment needed to visit UARM?
Please make an appointment to visit UARM for research by using our appointment form or by contacting UARM staff at firstname.lastname@example.org. All effort will be made to accommodate walk-in patrons, but due to limited space and staff, only a limited number of patrons may be accommodated at any given time. Since the finding aids of the Archives Program are being revised and are not available online at this time, it is important to make an appointment and discuss your research prior to visiting. Furthermore, many collections are stored off-campus and require next-business day notice to be retrieved.
Are all collections housed on-site at UARM?
No. The size of our collections is such that many materials are stored off-campus. These can be retrieved for patron use but require a turnaround time of 24 hours to be retrieved. UARM staff can have materials available for research on the next-business day after a request in made. This makes it particularly important to arrange an appointment to visit UARM for research.
What if a researcher is unable to visit UARM in person?
Reference requests received by email, telephone, or mail from those patrons unable to visit UARM are welcomed. However, due to limited staff time such requests must be of a reasonable length in nature. UARM staff cannot conduct extensive research for patrons who choose not to or are unable to visit in person.
Reproductions and permissions
Can patrons request photocopies or scans of materials?
Patrons can request photocopies or scans of materials. UARM reserves the right to limit the number of copies or scans made or to refuse to reproduce an item if doing so will infringe upon copyright or damage the material. More information on copies and scans can be found here
Can full collections be copied or scanned?
No, the contents of collections, files, boxes, books, etc. will not be photocopied or scanned in their entirety for any patrons. Only select resources within those items may be reproduced. In some instances, creating a full copy of a collection would be a violation of the Copyright Law of the United States.
Can patrons use a smartphone or digital camera to make copies of materials?
Smartphones and personal digital cameras may be used by patrons to make copies of archival material for research use only. All cameras must be used without the flash. Use of this equipment must be approved by UARM staff.
Can materials from UARM be reproduced for publication?
If you wish to obtain reproductions of materials for future publication, please inquire about obtaining permission. Permission to obtain a photocopy, scan or other reproduction of materials contained within the collections administered through the Archives Program does not constitute permission to reproduce, distribute, publicly display, publish, or make other protected uses of that copy as it is protected under the Copyright Law of the United States. Permission to engage in such activity is not authorized unless expressly granted to the patron by UARM. Please contact a UARM staff member for more information.
University Archives and Records Management