ECASC welcomes students, faculty, staff, and members of the public who wish to access our materials.  Below we have listed the information necessary for patrons to plan a successful and easy visit to the archives, and we encourage everyone to review these guidelines before making an appointment.

Appointments & Hours

ECASC is fortunate to have acquired a large number of institutional and special collections since its founding in 1984.  However, the volume of this material has required us to store materials offsite and it can sometimes take a day or two to retrieve items.  We therefore ask all patrons to make an appointment at least 24 hours in advance. 

Our open hours are:

Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.***

***  Please note that during the summer we close at 2:00 p.m. on Fridays.

When making your appointment please give us as much information as possible about the research you are looking to do.  By providing us with details about your research topic we can help you to find useful resources, and specifics about the boxes/resources you have already identified will allow us to retrieve those materials before your arrival.

To make an appointment, please email archives [at] emerson.edu or call us at 617-824-8301.

Guidelines for Using ECASC Materials

Many of the collections held by ECASC are irreplaceable and/or fragile.  We have developed a set of guidelines for individuals to follow while using these materials to help ensure that nothing is damaged during the research process.  Some of the most important of these rules are listed below.  Please see our Policies & Procedures for more information.

What You Can Bring to the Archives

Patrons may bring computers, cell phones, and cameras into the research room but must ask ECASC staff for permission before taking photographs of historical materials.  No food, beverages, or gum may be out when patrons are using our collections.  Researchers should bring pencils to the archives, as the use of pens is not permitted.  Services animals are allowed in the archives, but no other animals are permitted.

How to Handle Materials

Patrons’ hands should be clean and lotion should not be applied immediately before handling collections.  Fragile items should be handled with extreme care, and materials should always be laid flat on the research table rather than propped up or placed in the patron’s lap.  Do not write on, fold, fasten, or place post-it notes on any archival materials.  Do not trace materials or place paper/cards on top of materials when writing notes.  Archives materials should not be removed from the archives research room.  Materials should be kept in the order presented, and patrons should use “out” cards to mark the appropriate location of materials removed for viewing.  Patrons may be required to use gloves for some types of fragile materials.

Restricted Items

Materials may be restricted for reasons related to legal and privacy concerns, item fragility, terms specified by the donor, or for other reasons.  Staff will furnish information regarding the restriction of materials as requested.

Class Instruction

ECASC staff is happy to work with Emerson College faculty to develop instruction sessions and assignments involving archival and special collections.  We offer one-time sessions introducing archives and special collections, as well as provide in-depth classroom instruction and support for assignments. 

In order to ensure that we are able to properly plan and prepare for one-time instruction sessions we ask that faculty members contact us at least two weeks in advance.  Since student assignments often involve more staff involvement, we ask that faculty members contact us before the semester begins to ensure that staff members will be available to assist students.

We are also happy to help faculty develop assignments, and can help professors find archival and special collections that will be pertinent to their courses.  Please contact us at archives [at] emerson.edu or 617-824-8301 to learn more.

Permissions & Reproductions

ECASC may offer publication permissions and/or digital reproductions of ECASC materials as long as there are no legal, donor-specified, or item fragility restrictions.  Patrons must submit a completed Request for Reproductions/Application for Permission to Publish form indicating how materials will be used and by whom, as well as agreeing to abide by ECASC’s terms and conditions.  We will respond with any questions still needing to be answered, information about associated fees, and next steps. 

Patrons may take photographs of ECASC materials after receiving permission from a staff member.  Portable scanners may not be used.  Patrons may also request photocopies of materials for a small fee.  Permission to access, photograph, and/or photocopy ECASC materials does not constitute permission to publish.