User Policies

General Room Regulations

  • All researchers must fill out and sign the User Agreement form to use the Archives. 
  • No eating or drinking is permitted in the reading room for the preservation of historic materials.
  • Aside from the archival research materials you are currently using, the only materials allowed in the reading room are: personal notebooks, pencils (mechanical or wooden), headphones or earbuds, digital cameras, cell phones, tablets, laptop computers, or any adaptive/assistive equipment. All other belongings can be stored by the Archives Reference Desk or in lockers by the entrance on the first floor.  
  • Coats and jackets are not allowed in the Archives Reference Room.  
  • The Archives staff has the right to inspect any materials taken in or removed from the Archives Reading Room for security purposes.

Regulations for Use of Materials

  • Use pencil only in taking handwritten notes, no pens or markers are permitted.  Laptop computers may also be used to take notes.
  • You are permitted to take pictures of material with your camera or cell phone for your personal research use, in lieu of photocopies or scans. Flash must be turned off to help preserve the materials from light damage. Tripods are allowed with approval from staff.
  • Only one box/book can be viewed in the Archives Reference Room at a time.  When done with one box/book, notify the Archives staff and they will retrieve the next box/book, or you may switch them out on the cart outside the reading room. If you need help lifting heavy boxes please ask the staff for assistance.
  • Handle all materials with care and retain the order of papers within a file or box.
  • When viewing photographs, gloves must be worn to protect the photographs.  The Archives staff will instruct you on the proper handling procedures.
  • When viewing fragile books, certain precautions may need to be taken including the use of gloves and book cradles.  The Archives staff will instruct you on the proper handling procedures.
  • Generally, archival material may be scanned or photocopied; however, if such material is too fragile, requests for photocopies may be denied. Please mark documents for photocopying by placing a strip of acid-free paper (provided by the Archives staff) in front of the document to be copied.  DO NOT remove the documents from the individual files.  The Archives staff will make all photocopies and scans for a fee.  The fee schedule will be provided upon request, and is available on our website. For fragile materials that cannot be scanned or photocopied we recommend the use of a digital camera to take a photograph of the material.
  • If you find damaged material or believe there are missing items within a file, please alert the archives staff.

Microfilm Scanner Use

  • First priority use is reserved for staff, for reference and digitization projects. However, second priority use will be accomodated whenever possible. 
  • Second priority use is for patrons accessing microfilm records from the Archives' collection, or using microfilm on secure loan from another institution.
  • Third priority use is for library patrons, when the microfilm scanners on the 2nd floor are inoperable. 

Loan Policy

  • Ruth Lilly Special Collections and Archives (hereinafter referred to as "Special Collections") will loan materials (books, manuscripts, etc.) to cultural heritage institutions and other libraries. Such loans are governed by the ACRL/RBMS Guidelines for Interlibrary and Exhibition Loan of Special Collections Materials.
  • Special Collections will loan materials (books, manuscripts, etc.) to collection donors, subject to the conditions outlined below. Special Collections will not loan materials directly to individuals who are not the collection's donor.
  • Special Collections will strongly encourage both collection donors and cultural heritage institutions to accept digital reproductions whenever possible or practicable.
  • Special Collections has the right to refuse loans to protect collections; in the case of collection donors, Special Collections will work to find an acceptable alternative when originals should not be loaned or when storage or display at the borrowing institution places the item(s) at risk.
  • All loans must be returned by a mutually agreed upon date, subject to extension by mutual agreement. Special Collections will refuse further loans to any donor or institution that does not return collections in a timely manner.