Email or text us at email@example.com and we’ll answer ASAP.
Archives & Special Collections can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Chat With Us
Ask us a question using the chat window to the right. Online hours:
SUN - THURS 11am-5pm & 7pm-2am
Frequently Asked of Us
Check our FAQ for answers to popular questions.
Visit or Call Us
Stop by the Ask Me desk at Shadek or the Circulation desk at Martin, or call at:
Shadek-Fackenthal (717) 291-4217
Meet With Us
Students can meet with a librarian for one-on-one, expert research assistance.
Grad Schools & Jobs
Students can consult with a librarian to research prospective employers and explore graduate school opportunities.
AMS 171: Franklin's College and Beyond
Reference Resources - Encyclopedias, dictionaries, handbooks and bibliographies
Reference or secondary sources are informational resources written by individuals who were not the actual participants in the topic at hand. They may be of value to your research since they often provide greater objectivity and different perspectives as a result of the passage of time. Common secondary sources include encyclopedias, dictionaries, handbooks, and bibliographies.
Please Note: The general call number range for the United States is E151-E909
How to find and locate books and films
How to find and locate journal articles
Start by consulting the following electronic resources:
For additional article resources, look under the Electronic Resources - A to Z List on the Library homepage.
Don't Forget: Always consult the bibliography at the end of a journal article for additional resources!
World Wide Web
The World Wide Web can be a helpful environment in which to access scholarly information. To search for more authoritative sites and information, use mediated search directories such as Google Scholar.
What are Archives?Archives are the non-current records of an organization or institution preserved for their continuing historical value.
In a broader sense the term archives is often applied to any records, documents, or unpublished, one-of-a-kind written materials that
are deemed to have informational, cultural, historical, or artifactual value and are deliberately preserved for future generations.
Archival materials of a personal nature such as letters, diaries, or wills are often called
manuscripts or papers rather than archives since they do not document the official business of an organization,
but that of an individual or family.
The Archives and Special Collections Department at Franklin and Marshall College serves three major functions. First, it is the repository for the
official archives or institutional records of the College as well as a broad collection of other materials relating to the history of Franklin and Marshall.
Secondly, the department preserves the personal manuscripts and official papers of prominent area individuals, families and local organizations.
Lastly, as a unit of the library, the department maintains special collections of rare materials such as autographs, books, maps, posters, newspapers, prints and photographs.
The Archives and Special Collections Department at Franklin and Marshall College serves three major functions. First, it is the repository for the official archives or institutional records of the College as well as a broad collection of other materials relating to the history of Franklin and Marshall. Secondly, the department preserves the personal manuscripts and official papers of prominent area individuals, families and local organizations. Lastly, as a unit of the library, the department maintains special collections of rare materials such as autographs, books, maps, posters, newspapers, prints and photographs.
Why are archives important?Archives are a valuable tool in historical research as they represent a tangible link to the past. They chronicle, first-hand, what actually occurred during a particular event or time period. This proximity results in a unique "participant's perspective" that is invaluable to historians in understanding and interpreting the past.
Archives are held by a wide variety of institutions including religious organizations, corporations, government agencies, medical institutions, historical societies, and universities.
What are the differences between Libraries and Archives?In order to use libraries and archives effectively, it is important to understand the major differences between the two:
General Guidelines for Reading Historic DocumentsWhen first learning to read and transcribe historic documents, begin with 19th century documents, and work backward to the colonial period. This way, you will become familiar with early handwriting, spelling, abbreviations, and common salutations.
Other guidelines include:
General Rules for Transcribing Historic DocumentsWhen transcribing documents, include all original abbreviations, cancellations, capitalization, punctuation, and spelling.
Technical rules include:
Contact Christopher Raab for further assistance or fill out a research appointment request form to meet with a librarian.
Last updated: 8/12/11 cmr