The Iowa Room, located on the lower level of Burling Library, is home to the Department of Special Collections and Archives, whose mission is to collect, preserve, and make available for research rare and unique materials. We have a good teaching collection of books that document the history of print culture from the birth of movable type to the present day. We also have a strong focus on materials that document the history of Grinnell College, the surrounding community, and its cultural and natural environment in Iowa, including the prairie setting of which it is a part. From a Kelmscott edition of Chaucer to a first edition of the Book of Mormon to James Norman Hall’s papers, Special Collections offers an outstanding array of rare and unique materials for researchers and scholars. Books, manuscripts, maps, audio-visual materials, photographs, and ephemera are housed in our vault, a secure, climate-controlled environment which preserves the collections for future generations.
The Iowa Room invites all students, faculty, researchers, and the general public to discover the treasures within its broad collections. The library is open 1:30 to 4:30 Monday through Friday afternoons, and mornings by appointment. The Iowa Room is a non-circulating, closed stacks library, and patrons are encouraged to consult with staff for help finding and using materials.
Archon indexes the contents of our finding aids and pamphlet files. For books, please consult the library catalog (http://cat.lib.grinnell.edu/). Archon is a work in progress and not all materials are yet included. Please contact us if you have a question about our collections.