SC/UA Migration Project: Seeking Higher Ground

In September 2021, Hurricane Ida severely impacted the University Libraries Special Collections and University Archives (SC/UA), home to the Sinclair New Jersey Collection, Manuscript Collection, Rare Book and Book Arts Collection, and Rutgers University Archives.  Many of our collections have been moved offsite for safekeeping, which impacts availability and retrieval time.  The Reading Room has been relocated to the first floor of Alexander Library, by advance appointment only. Walk in patrons will not be admitted.   Please consult with an SC/UA faculty or staff member about scheduling an appointment.

Virtual reference is available  via our contact form.

Portions of SC/UA’s materials are accessible online through the SC/UA Digital Resources Guide, at SC/UA Primary Source Highlights, and at the Rutgers University Libraries Digital Collections site. 

See the updates section below for the most current information on our services and resources. You can also follow us on Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook, or subscribe to our blog .

 If you have questions, please contact us.

Updates

5/31/2022

Our new reading room has opened! The expanded space on the first floor of Alexander Library holds 8-10 researchers. Our June hours will be Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday 10-12:30 and 1:30-4. In July and August, we will be open Tuesdays and Wednesdays only.  Advance appointments are required. Walk in patrons will not be admitted. Requests for material will take longer than usual and some material will not be available due to our material largely being stored offsite. Rare books, with the exception of 100 books, are inaccessible.  Please consult with SC/UA staff to scheduling an appointment.

Hope to see you at Alex!

4/15/2022

Good news from Special Collections and University Archives: Improved access to our resources and expanded researcher hours and capacity. The main phase of moving our collections has been completed so most of our manuscript collections are accessible to patrons. We retained frequently used collection​s in Alexander Library and ​can provide access to the majority of material​ stored offsite.  Retrieval does take longer than usual so advanced notice is required for appointments.

We have expanded ​our reading room hours and are now open Tuesday, Wednesday​, and Thursday 10 am -12:30 pm and 1:30 pm – 4 pm,  by appointment only. Likewise, we look forward to increasing our reading room capacity by June, when we move to a larger space on the first floor of Alexander.

If you have questions about availability of specific material or would like to make an appointment, please contact us.

4/7/2022

We are very happy to announce that the move of our collections is now complete! Access to collections in commercial storage remains limited at this time, but will steadily increase as the vendor continues to add our collections to their database. Please continue to refer to our 2/7/22 update for research appointment details. Contact us via our web contact form for assistance and remote reference services. 

3/3/2022

The move of our collections to safer locations is almost complete. A small reading room continues to be open by appointment only for current Rutgers faculty, students, and staff. Remote reference is available  to all patrons via our web contact form. Due to a high volume of requests and ongoing work on the collections move, our response time is longer than usual. (See 2/7/22 update below for details).

2/7/2022

Good news: On Tuesday, February 15th, Special Collections and University Archives will open a small Reading Room in Alexander Library. Initially the Reading Room will be open Tuesdays and Wednesdays, 10-12:30 , and 1:30-4. Advance appointments are required. Walk in patrons will not be admitted. Requests for material will take longer than usual and some material will not be available due to our ongoing collections move. Rare books, with the exception of 100 books, are inaccessible.

Up to two patrons--current Rutgers faculty, staff, and students only--can be accommodated at a time. These limits are based on the Return to Rutgers policies for visitor access and spacing and will be updated as Rutgers guidelines evolve.  Please consult with an SC/UA faculty or staff member about scheduling an appointment.

1/19/2022
Progress continues on the migration, although slowed by Omicron, snow, and, today, a broken truck. While getting back up to full speed, we are developing our reopening plans. We also continue to publish more collections online. Today the New Jersey Newspaper Project Team completed the addition of several new newspaper titles to the New Jersey Digital Newspaper Project:

1/10/2022
We are making progress on the move! Remote reference service for digital material only is now available. Contact us for assistance. Librarians and staff continue to work offsite due to new Rutgers COVID Omicron precautions. At this time, we expect to return to working onsite and to resume fuller remote reference services in February. The move will still be underway at that time, so access to collections will be limited and our response time will be longer than usual. We continue to anticipate that we will be able to welcome Rutgers researchers back onsite in March 2022.

12/22/2021

The phased reopening of SC/UA will begin January 10, 2022, with remote reference service for digital material only. Librarians will be working offsite due to new Rutgers COVID Omicron precautions through January 31, 2022. When restrictions are lifted and librarians return to working onsite (now planned for February), fuller remote reference services will resume. With the move still underway, access to collections will be limited and our response time will be longer than usual. The next phase will be to allow onsite Rutgers researchers, which by the mover's estimation will be in March 2022, using the Clifford Case room in Alexander Library as a temporary reading room.

12/17/2021
The commercial mover has now moved 973 linear shelf feet of SC/UA manuscripts and rare books from the Alexander subbasement to off-site storage. They have also moved 70 filing cabinets that include printed material, photographs, and maps into the New Jersey Reading Room that will be available onsite when SC/UA reopens. Packing and moving will continue through December 22 and begin again in January.

12/9/2021
The ​phased reopening of SC/UA will begin January 10, 2022, with remote reference service being provided through ​the Libraries' Ask a Librarian Service. ​Please be aware that the availability of research material will be limited and ​our response time will be longer than usual ​due to many collections being located off-site.  When the SC/UA move is complete, ​which by the mover's estimation will be in March ​2022, research visits for Rutgers patrons will resume by appointment-only.  The Clifford Case room in Alexander Library will be used as a temporary reading room for patron visits. 

11/16/2021
On Monday, November 22, a commercial vendor will begin packing our rare books and manuscript collections. Frequently used material will be moved to dry stable Rutgers locations for ready access. Less frequently requested material will be sent to commercial offsite storage facilities.  Many of the offsite collections will be available to patrons when we reopen in January, with advanced notice.

11/10/2021
A commercial vendor has been hired to move collections out of the recently flooded areas in Alexander library to safer storage spaces. The high-use collections, New Jersey Reading Room material, and a selection of rare books will remain on campus. Other collections will be moved to commercial space.  Moving is estimated to begin November 22 and be completed by December 24.