Visitor Information

Administrative Office

Located in the Columbia Research Center
8:00 a.m. to 4:45 p.m., Tuesday through Friday, closed Mondays
1020 Lowry Street, Columbia, Missouri, 65201-7298
(800) 747-6366 or (573) 882-7083, FAX (573) 884-4950
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Prior to Arrival

The Society's research centers are located in Cape Girardeau, Columbia, Kansas City, Rolla, Springfield and St. Louis. Before arriving, visitors should contact research center staff to verify that the manuscript collection they would like to view is available, as materials may be restricted, in storage, or located at another research center. Collections stored at one research center can be viewed at any of the others; transfers between campus research centers usually takes 48 hours. Microfilmed collections can be borrowed through interlibrary loan.

Research Center Locations

Upon Arrival

Holdings are non-circulating and must be used on the premises. Visitors must provide a government-issued photo ID, and read and sign a rules and consent form before using manuscript material or rare books from the reference collection. Researchers will then be issued a research center card.

Examples of accepted government-issued photo IDs:

General Facility Protocol

For security purposes, patrons using the Research Center-Columbia are asked to leave coats, jackets, briefcases, backpacks, and similar articles in lockers. Only items such as paper, pencils, notes, and laptop computers are allowed in the center. These items, plus sweaters worn when the room is cool, will be subject to search by Society personnel upon departure.

Patrons may use cameras with the permission of the staff. For security reasons, camera bags and equipment cases are not allowed in the Research Center. The Society staff reserves the right to prohibit the photographing of a particular item based on fragile condition or if photography is a known violation of copyright law. Patrons are responsible for observing copyright law. No scanners are allowed in the Research Center.

The Society requires every researcher to use a pencil while in the research center. Using pencils to take notes is routine practice in most archival and manuscript repositories. Staff members are happy to provide pencils to patrons who do not bring one with them.

Once the staff has provided a manuscript collection to a researcher, the researcher is only allowed to take one folder out of one box at a time. Because it is very important to preserve the existing order of the papers in each folder, researchers should read through the material like a book, and refrain from removing papers out of the folder. Staff members can assist patrons who need to flag manuscript material for copying if they are uncomfortable doing so. Researchers should report any disarrangement to the reference staff. Failure to comply with the rules and staff direction will lead to the suspension or revocation of research privileges.

All photocopying except microfilm copies is handled by the staff. Collections cannot be reproduced in their entirety. Orders of over 200 pages will be photocopied at the staff's discretion based on previously scheduled work. Copies will be stamped with a copyright notice. Audio and video materials held by the Society are for research use only, but may be reproduced on a case-by-case basis. Patrons making microfilm copies are able to print hard copies as well as save scans to a flash drive.