The Samuel P. Hayes Research Library and Archives staff enjoy sharing our resources and unique collections.
All visits are by appointment only.
We're an unusual collection in many ways. The Research Library is located in the middle of a high school building, and we have a much smaller staff than many academic libraries or historical societies.
All visitors to our building must be escorted at all times (so a staff member must be available throughout your visit) and we have additional policies to protect our students and our materials. This page shares important information so you make the most of your visit.
Please arrange your visit at least five working days in advance. Please complete the Research Application form described in the next section as soon as you know you would like to visit. This gives us time to arrange the schedule for your visit and have materials ready when you arrive.
Hours: Researcher visits are scheduled between 9am and 3:45pm, Monday to Friday. We are closed on weekends and Perkins holidays, and may not be available at other times due to staff commitments.
In the Boston area unexpectedly? We can sometimes accommodate visits with less notice, but may have limited times you can visit or some resources may not be available.
The Research Application form
Our research application asks for information about you, your background, and your current research. We help researchers from a wide range of backgrounds, and we're often aware of related material that may not be obvious from the catalog or finding aids.
List of materials: You do not need to identify all the specific materials you would like to work with while you’re here in the initial form, but we do ask for an overview of what kinds of materials you’d like to consult. We ask about this on the form so we can suggest any other relevant items.
We encourage you to search the library catalog, review Archives finding aids (which include links to digital collections) and consult with the Research Librarian to identify materials in our collection before you submit the form. The historical resources subject guide on the Research Library catalog links to resources on common topics.
Access options: The Archives Collection Access policy has complete details about access to our collection. Some kinds of material may not be available for visitors, or only after additional discussion and application. In some cases, the materials you are interested in may already be digitized or we can make scans or digital copies easily. In this case, we’ll direct you to those resources and arrange for scans.
Museum: If you would like to view items in the Museum, please arrange for a free tour. Tours can focus on your area of interest, and the museum has many items you can touch and handle.
When you are ready, complete the research application form.
Scheduling: Once we receive your completed application, we will schedule your visit and confirm the time and date. We will also send you additional information about visiting our campus (parking, location, available food near campus, etc.)
A few days before your visit, we will confirm your arrival time, and you can let us know if there are any additional items you’d like.
Once you arrive on campus, check in with the reception desk in the Howe Building. A staff member will come to meet you. We'll ask you to sign a sheet agreeing with our policies, review the day's schedule and details, and share other information for your visit.
If anything changes in your plans, please let us know as soon as possible. We’ve set aside time and arranged our day for your visit, so knowing if you are running late or need to reschedule lets us tend to other questions and tasks.
Photographs can be taken (of non-restricted items) for personal research use. For any other use, consult our image licensing information.