This page contains enriched content visible when JavaScript is enabled or by clicking here. Skip to Main Content

Special Collections

Archival Use Policy

Policies Regarding Research and Use of Archival Collections 


ACCESS The archival collections in the Lapp Learning Commons at the Chicago Theological Seminary are normally open to qualified researchers under the supervision of the Library Director. The Library Director will keep the original copy of this approval on file at the Archives. Some collections are restricted, and written permission is required from the appropriate authority prior to use. Access to such collections is denied without the required written permission.

USE All archival materials shall be used within the designated reading area in the Lapp Learning Commons under the supervision of the Learning Commons staff. The Lapp Learning Commons is normally open on weekdays 9:00 A.M. - 5:00 P.M. Due to staffing limitations, access to materials is via appointment only. The archival collection areas are closed to all researchers. A Learning Commons staff member will locate materials for researchers and deliver them to the reading room. Materials are to be returned directly to the Learning Commons staff by theresearcher after use.

PHOTOCOPYING OR SCANNING Photocopying and scanning services are available but may be limited due to donor restrictions, copyright law, condition of the item, or other reasons. Do not photocopy or scan materials without first asking the Library Director. The Learning Commons cannot honor requests to photocopy or scan complete collections or large parts of a collection. The Library Director may deny any request to photocopy or scan material. It is understood that all photocopies or digital copies are to be used in accordance with U.S. Copyright Law.

Archives Reading Room Rules

  1. Before starting, the researcher shall complete a Request for Archives Use Form and provide proof of identity with a photo ID. This form will be kept on file in the Learning Commons.
  2. Researchers are required to register each time they wish to consult archival collections at CTS.
  3. All archival materials are housed in closed stack areas. Readers must request materials via a Request Form, and the materials will be delivered to the researcher by Learning Commons staff one container, folder, or item at a time at the Archivist’s discretion.
  4. Only pencils or a researcher’s own laptop computer may be used for taking notes. Ink pens are not allowed in the reading room. Scanners or digital cameras may be used after consultation with the Archivist.
  5. All archival materials will be used in the designated reading room only.
  6. Researchers are responsible for safeguarding all materials made available to them. Materials used by the researcher are to be kept in the original order in which they were received and not rearranged. Archival materials may not be leaned on, written on, folded, or handled in any way that might cause damage.
  7. Eating and drinking are prohibited in the designated reading room where archival materials are handled. 
  8. Do not lay bound volumes face-down or employ harmful bookmarks such as pencils, rulers, or other books. Broken spines and torn pages can result.
  9. When writing notes, do not lay your paper or cards on top of the archival materials. An impression can be left on the page.
  10. All personal items such as briefcases, backpacks, purses, coats, etc... must be placed in a storage locker before handling archival materials in the designated reading room.
  11. The Lapp Learning Commons retains full rights to all reproductions under its ownership. No materials from the collection may be reproduced in any form for public or commercial use without prior written permission from the Library Director. Permission to photocopy or capture a digital image is not an authorization to publish.
  12. Failure to comply with any of these rules may result in the denial of access to library and archival collections at the Lapp Learning Commons at the Chicago Theological Seminary.
  13. In citing materials from archival and manuscript collections located in this repository, the form should be as follows:

Collection Title Name, Box #, Folder #, Archives, Lapp Learning Commons, Chicago Theological Seminary, Chicago, IL.