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Location: First floor of Swem Library (Map)
Phone: (757) 221-3090
Email: spcoll@wm.edu

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About Us

The Special Collections Research Center (SCRC) at Swem Library connects students, faculty, and researchers with rare and unique materials, including: 

  • original manuscripts 
  • photographs 
  • rare books 
  • maps 
  • audiovisual media 
  • and more 

Services during COVID-19

The reading room is open and we are also available for online consultations. Please make an appointment for both the reading room and online Zoom consultations by emailing spcoll@wm.edu two business days in advance. The reading room is open to current William & Mary faculty, students and staff by appointment. Our reproduction services are also available, but priority is given to materials needed for instruction at W&M. There may be delays for personal requests.

Spotlight

Manuscripts

Ivy Li '23 Photograph, Documenting Life During COVID-19

This collection of personal reflections and experiences during the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic includes this photo taken on March 21st at Los Angeles International Airport. "Although it was midnight, the airport was full of people waiting to board on planes. Most of them were going to return to their home countries."

Manuscripts

Jefferson H. Clark Collection

The Jefferson H. Clark collection contains a variety of materials from Clark’s service in World War I, including photographs, documents, Clark’s helmet, and this surgical kit. 

Oral Histories

Satoshi Ito Oral History Interview

Professor Ito shares his experience in a Relocation Center in Arkansas during World War II, the evolution of W&M's Department of Sociology, and his volunteer efforts with the Anti-Racism Commission, Diocese of Southern Virginia, the New Kent County Democratic Committee, and the Human Rights Committee of Eastern State Hospital. 

Spotlight

Passengers in face masks and protective clothing wait for flights at the Los Angeles Airport.

Ivy Li '23 Photograph, Documenting Life During COVID-19

This collection of personal reflections and experiences during the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic includes this photo taken on March 21st at Los Angeles International Airport. "Although it was midnight, the airport was full of people waiting to board on planes. Most of them were going to return to their home countries."

Open black leather surgical kit with various steel tools.

Jefferson H. Clark Collection

The Jefferson H. Clark collection contains a variety of materials from Clark’s service in World War I, including photographs, documents, Clark’s helmet, and this surgical kit. 

Several hand painted covers of zines.

Latinx Zines

Special Collections has an ever-growing collection of self-published books, or zines, including numerous zines made by Latinx authors and creators. 

First page of Nanny Waller's diary dated 1848.

Nanny C. Waller Diary

The diary, 1849-1851, of Nanny C. Waller, Williamsburg, Virginia which includes religious writings, discussion of a cholera epidemic, and of her family.

Profile photo of Satoshi Ito.

Satoshi Ito Oral History Interview

Professor Ito shares his experience in a Relocation Center in Arkansas during World War II, the evolution of W&M's Department of Sociology, and his volunteer efforts with the Anti-Racism Commission, Diocese of Southern Virginia, the New Kent County Democratic Committee, and the Human Rights Committee of Eastern State Hospital. 

An Acquired Taste

  • Admission sign at Stockade Theatre
    Posted April 28, 2021
    Over the winter and spring of early 1941, a towering landmark rose on the rural landscape less than two miles from downtown Williamsburg. The structure housed the screen for the Stockade Theatre Auto-Torium at Casey’s Corner, where Richmond and Ironbound Roads intersect.
  • Recipes and household tips taken from newspapers and pasted into the back of The Virginia House-wife.
    Posted March 29, 2021
    My favorite kinds of materials in archives are the ones we might describe colloquially as “well-loved,” where you can tell that someone—or perhaps more than one someone—spent hours writing, reading, and thinking about a topic.

Current Exhibit

  • Red beads strung into letters to form the text "We Define Our Selves" on a person's bare back

    In Their Own Words

    Zine Making for Self-Exploration and Expression

    Swem Library Lobby
    April 23, 2021 to May 31, 2021

    Before social media gave users the freedom to share their lives and perspectives, zines radically challenged the publishing industry’s standards, providing a way to spark dialogues about unaddressed subjects and share works by largely underrepresented authors.