The Van Gorden-Williams Library & Archives strives to provide both intellectual and physical access to its collections. Readers are encouraged to contact us with their research questions or visit our Reading Room.
Online Catalogs and Finding Aids
We encourage potential researchers to search our catalogs, read more about our collections, or contact Library & Archives staff to see whether we have material relevant to their research.
Online catalog – represents most of the library’s holdings and a growing number of records for archival collections
Mobius – the Museum’s object database also contains a growing number of records for archival items and collections
Using the Library & Archives
The Library & Archives is free of charge and open to the public. No appointment is necessary. Researchers fill out a registration form upon arrival and must provide a photo id.
Because many of our collections are rare, fragile, or irreplaceable, we have established policies and procedures to ensure that they will be both accessible to current researchers and available for research for future generations.
Researchers must fill out a request form for all library or archival materials that they wish to consult in the reading room. Library & Archives staff will retrieve all material and deliver it to users in the reading room. Researchers are not permitted in the Library & Archives stack areas.
Laptops and WiFi
Researchers are encouraged to bring laptops to the reading room. Wireless internet access is available in the Reading Room for researchers who have computers with wireless capabilities. Ask at the Reference Desk for assistance with logging on.
Reading Room Policies
Coats, backpacks, bags, etc. must be left in the coat room or with the librarian or archivist. We reserve the right to inspect bags and belongings before researchers leave the reading room.
No pens may be used in the reading room. Use of pencils, paper, notes, and laptops are allowed.
Access to some archival material is restricted and requires the permission of the Supreme Council before use. All archival material must be requested through the Archivist.
Camera Use and Photocopies
Researchers may take photographs of collection materials for study purposes only, and as allowed by the library, based on the physical condition of the materials, copyright law, donor restrictions, and reading room rules. Read the complete Reading Room Camera Use Policy here. [link to PDF]
Photocopies are available for 25 cents per copy. All copies are made by Library & Archives staff. Copying may be limited or denied based on the physical condition of the materials, copyright law, or donor restrictions.
Permission to publish
Researchers must obtain permission from the Scottish Rite Masonic Museum & Library to publish or quote from any archival materials, and must use the citation provided by the archivist. Researchers wishing to publish or quote from archival collections will be asked to fill out a Request for Permission to Publish Archival Material form. Researchers are also responsible for acquiring any permission from the copyright holder prior to publication.