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Harvard University Library

Page history last edited by PBworks 16 years, 11 months ago

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John Harvard, a clergyman from Massachusetts, founded the Harvard University Library (HUL) in 1638 with a donation of 260 books to the new university. From this small beginning, HUL has grown to become the largest academic library in the world consisting of more than 90 libraries throughout the world. Its collection includes more than 15.39 million volumes to which founder John Harvard contributed a total of 400 books.


The bulk of HUL consists of the eleven major libraries of the Harvard College Library including the Harry Elkins Widener Memorial Library, the flagship library of Harvard University, and Lamont Library, the first library in the United States specifically designed for use by undergraduates. Widener Library, which is located in Harvard Yard, houses the core of the university’s collection, including 5.7 million volumes and pamphlets.


The mission of Harvard College Library as noted in The Harvard Guide “is to provide a quiet environment in which faculty, students, and scholars can carry out their work”. Access to Harvard libraries is restricted to individuals with Harvard IDs and visiting scholars and researchers, who have applied and paid for library privileges.




"About HUL." Harvard University Library. 26 July 2005. 28 April 2006. <http://hul.harvard.edu/about.html>.


Krasner-Khait, Barbara. "Survivor: The History of the Library." History Magazine. October 2001. 28 April 2006. <http://www.history-magazine.com/libraries.html>.


"Largest Academic Library in the World." The Harvard Guide. 2005. 28 April 2006. <http://www.news.harvard.edu/guide/to_do/to_do6.html>.


"History." Harvard College Library. 12 September 2005. 28 April 2006. <http://hcl.harvard.edu/libraries/lamont/history.html>.


Compiled by: Kristin J.


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