Because many of the materials in the Archives are fragile and unique, they are irreplaceable and thus require special handling. Your observance of the guidelines listed below makes you a partner with the staff of the Pratt Institute Libraries in their efforts to preserve these important historical records for future use, and we are grateful for your cooperation.
All researchers are asked to observe the following procedures when using these materials:
- Hands should be clean and free of oils. If you have just eaten or put on lotion, please wash your hand with soap and water before viewing materials.
- Materials may be viewed only at the dedicated tables in the Reference Room and may not be removed from that room.
- Briefcases and purses should not be opened or placed on the table when materials are in use.
- Only pencils may be used for taking notes. Laptops are permitted.
- No food or drink of any kind, including bottled water, may be consumed while using the materials.
- When viewing a collection housed in multiple document boxes, only one box at a time may be opened, to avoid returning folders or items to the wrong box.
- When using a document box with multiple folders, only one folder at a time may be opened, to avoid returning individual documents to the wrong folder.
- Never remove items from folders.
- Materials should be placed flat on the table, never in your lap.
- Never use adhesive post-it notes or paper clips to mark places; instead, ask for scraps of paper from the reference desk or use the paper markers provided by the Archivist.
- Observe any special instructions pertaining to the specific collection you are using; these will be included on the appointment form or will be explained to you by the Archivist.
- Cotton gloves will be provided and must be worn for handling photographs not in protective enclosures. Photographs should never be removed from their enclosures.
- Foam book cradles may be supplied for supporting heavy or fragile books.
- Bound books in document boxes are stored with spines down and should be returned to their boxes in the same position.
- Photocopying and scanning are generally not permitted; however, digital photography is allowed, and you may bring your own camera or mobile device.