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Introduction to Archival Research

Get started understanding how to find and use archival collections in your school work, professional research, or family research.

CU Library Catalog

Some books and periodicals from within our archival collections can be searched in the CU Boulder Library catalog. We recommend using the Library's older platform, the classic catalog.

To search for archives' material specifically, click on "library catalog advanced keyword search" under the search bar:

Screenshot of CU Libraries' catalog search bar. "Advanced Search" link available under search bar

Type in your search terms. In the "Location" field and choose "Archives." This will allow you to search only material within archival collections. 

Screenshot of library catalog "Advanced Search" page. In location field, "Archives" is chosen

If you know the name of the collection you would like to search within, you can include the collection name as a search term when you make your search.

Note the following within the search results: 

Screenshot of search result in library catalog, with fields as described below

  • The Location will say "Archives" and may indicate which collection this publication comes from. 
  • The Status of the item will say "Lib[ary] Use Only." Because this item is part of an archival collection, it can only be accessed within the Libraries' Reading Room. 
  • You can click on the name of the collection number Collection Title to see more publications from that collection.

To request to see this item, send an email to Include as much information as possible about the item: 

  • Title and author
  • Location/collection
  • Call number

Or include the permanent link to the record, from the bottom of the record page. 



Rare and Distinctive Collections


Classroom: Norlin N345

Reading Room: Norlin M350B