Prepare for your visit

Planning Your Research Visit

reading room.

The Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library's building at 121 Wall Street has reopened. The reading room is open as follows:

Monday 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m
Tuesday to Thursday 9:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.
Friday 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

A note to readers: all materials must be returned to the access services desk at least fifteen minutes before the reading room closes (i.e., 6:45 pm Monday - Thursday, 4:45 pm Friday). 

Please request collection material online at least two business days in advance of your visit, using the request links in ORBIS and the Yale Finding Aid DatabaseWe ask that you fill out one form per box of archival material. 

Consult the Closed Collections Schedule while planning your visit.  Email if you have questions about the availibiltiy of specific items.The Beinecke is an active research library, and in addition to materials on this list, individual items may be already in use and therefore unavailable at the time they are requested for research. These uses may include classes, loans, exhibits, conservation, and use by other researchers in the reading room. The Beinecke is also a large library, with staff working with collections in multiple locations. Therefore, additional time may be required to provide access to some items.

The Beinecke Library is open to all Yale University students and faculty, and visiting researchers whose work requires use of its special collections. You will need to bring appropriate photo ID the first time you register. 

Please consult the Reading Room Policies prior to visiting the library.  All library materials must be handled with great care to ensure their safety and preservation.  

Research areas and public exhibition spaces are accessible to the handicapped via elevator.  Researchers requiring special accommodations are encouraged to email prior to their visit.  Metered parking for the handicapped is available on High St. between Wall St. and Grove St.

Researchers are encouraged to bring their own laptop computers.The Yale Guest network is available for those who are not affiliated with Yale. Individuals affiliated with participating US and international institutions may use the Eduroam network.  Two public computer workstations are available for reference use.

Please be prepared to secure most of your belongings in a Beinecke locker, as limited amounts of material are permitted in the reading room. Please note that only yellow pencils are permitted in the reading room.  Researcher may bring their own or one will be provided to them at the time of their visit. 

Researchers are encouraged to acquaint themselves with the library's holdings and to gather preliminary information needed to identify and locate materials relevant to their work by reading an overview of the curatorial areas of the collection and available library catalogs and databases. Yale University Library's online catalog, Orbis, and databases devoted to new acquisitions and manuscripts and archival materials provide descriptions of the library's books and archives. Curators and public services librarians are available for reference consultations by request.

Many Beinecke Library collection materials may be digitally photographed by readers in the reading room for study purposes with a small handheld camera, cell phone or iPad.  Large cameras and tripods are not allowed.  Researchers will need to complete and sign the "Policy on Digital Photography be Readers in the Reading Room" as a part of the registration process.   It is also possible to order reproductions.

Born-digital materials in manuscript collections also must be requested at least two days in advance. Permission to view these digital files will be granted to researchers upon application. Please review our access policies for specific information about born-digital collection materials.

All Yale University students and faculty are welcome to study at the Beinecke. If you have not visited the Beinecke before, please take a moment to pre-register using your Net ID via our online request system. When you arrive, be sure to bring your Yale ID to compete the registration process.

Researchers whose work requires use of our collections are welcome to study at the Beinecke. If you have not visited the Beinecke before, please take a moment to pre-register online via our online request system. When you arrive, please bring either

A government-issued passport bearing your name, your photograph, and an expiration date indicating current validity.


A non-passport government-issued ID bearing your name, your photograph, and an expiration date indicating current validity. Examples: driver's license, U.S. state-issued identity card; military ID

  AND ONE verification document containing your name and issued by a school, agency, or corporate body.
  A verification document does not need to contain a photograph or an expiration date, but the latter must be currently valid if present. Examples: a second non-passport government-issued ID; a school, college, alumni, or employment ID; a utility or other bill less than 2 months old; a voter registration card; a credit card; a Yale Library unaffiliated researcher ID; a signed letter of introduction from a teacher or supervisor on institutional letterhead and dated within the previous year.




Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library
121 Wall Street | New Haven, CT 06511
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Tel: (203) 432-2977    Fax: (203) 432-4047

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Monday 10 am - 7 pm
Tuesday-Thursday 9 am - 7 pm
Friday 9 am - 5 pm
Saturday (Exhibitions only) 12 pm - 5 pm
Sunday (Exhibitions only) 12 pm - 4 pm

Holiday Schedule and Closed Collections Schedule