Expanding Access: Loan of Original Materials in Special Collections

H. THOMAS HICKERSON, ANNE R. KENNEY

Abstract

The interinstitutional loan of special collections for research purposes has the potential to expand significantly access to the unique documentary resources of the nation’s libraries. However, most special collection librarians would argue that because of the uniqueness of their material, one should not take unnecessary risks with it. Although they would see temporary loans as risky, precedents do exist, including the long-term success of several statewide archival networks which freely exchange unique materials between members. Additionally the development and implementation of the RLIN AMC format was initiated in order to broaden bibliographic accessibility nationally. It seems that these two concepts . . .

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