Loans for Exhibits

Institutions interested in borrowing materials from Archives & Special Collections for exhibitions should contact the department at least six months in advance of the opening of the exhibit for domestic exhibitions and one year in advance for exhibitions in countries other than the United States. Preliminary information should include full description of item(s) requested, opening and closing dates of the exhibit, and an indication of how material would be displayed. Exact display information and a formal exhibition facilities report for the institution will be required before a decision can be made.  Please send the information to

Please see the Columbia University Libraries Guidelines for Lending Materials for Exhibition for a detailed description of how to place your loan request.

Depending on the extent and/or complexity of the loan request, Archives & Special Collections may charge up to $100 per loaned item to cover the time spent on processing the loan, making the condition report, and preparing the item for exhibition.

For further information on exhibition loan best practices, please see the Rare Book & Manuscript Section, Association of College and Research Libraries, American Library Association, ACRL Guidelines for Borrowing and Lending Special Collections Materials for Exhibition (January 2012).