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Manuscripts and Archival Collections

Rare Books & Special Collections houses personal papers of members of the University staff, graduates, benefactors and other individuals and organisations associated with the University of Adelaide.  It also holds papers relating to the Library's general collection interests, notably the theatre, music composition, the central Pacific, and Australian aboriginal culture, linguistics and physical anthropology. There are also collections of authors' manuscripts, individual letters and documents of interest for their provenance, content or form.

A list of the manuscript collections is available and is supplemented by further contents listings for each collection. Entries for each collection and for other individual manuscripts can also be found in the University of Adelaide library catalogue.

The official records of the University and the archives of associated bodies are held by the The University of Adelaide Archives.

Records relating to the history of the Library itself are listed here.

Other South Australian archival material is held by The State Library of SA (family, business and society records) and by State Records (official government records).

Extensive records of Australian scientists are listed on Bright Sparcs.

Access to Manuscript Collections

A formal request for access to the manuscript collections held in Rare Books & Special Collections, Barr Smith Library, must be made prior to the use of any material. The request application signifies acceptance of the access conditions as set out on the form. The completed application form can be submitted via email to Special Collections or presented upon arrival. Official identification is required.

Rare Books & Special Collections is open from 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday.

Citation of unpublished material held in Rare Books & Special Collections should be made in our preferred style.

For additional information, please contact Rare Books & Special Collections at:

Barr Smith Library, University of Adelaide, South Australia 5005
Telephone: +61 8313 5224
Fax: +61 8313 4369

Rare Books & Special Collections

The University of Adelaide
Rare Books & Special Collections
Level 1, Barr Smith Library
South Australia 5005


Phone: +61 8 8313 5224