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Knowledge by Archiving the Past

Photo: Andrew Brodhead

Stanford Libraries connects with every corner of the university, creating spaces and services for exploration, investigation and knowledge creation. Faculty, students and scholars worldwide rely on Stanford’s network of 20 libraries, data services and diverse collections to fuel discovery.

The Department of Special Collections within Cecil H. Green Library provides access to archives of famous literary figures like Steinbeck and Ginsberg, as well as the Ampex Museum and Apple Computer. The history of Silicon Valley collection includes oscilloscopes from Hewlett Packard, 21st-century games and the personal papers of notable Stanford professors. There are rarities such as Egyptian papyri, Shakespeare’s Second Folio, the Nuremberg Chronicles (1493) and extensive photographic collections of the American West and modern times.

As a pioneer in digital library practices, Stanford Libraries has embarked on ventures that are shaping the future of libraries. These projects enhance academic collaboration with peer libraries and organizations worldwide.

Photo: John Sutton

Hohbach Hall

Built in 1980 and re-opened in 2022 after a major renovation, Hohbach Hall houses the Silicon Valley Archives, a classroom for teaching with rare books and manuscripts, a presentation hall for lectures and workshops, adjacent circulation and reference desks, wall-mounted display cases, and a well-furnished, airy space for students to study and collaborate.

Photo: Linda A. Cicero

Special Archivists

Stanford conservators meticulously work on precious items from the university’s Special Collections — rare treasures spanning from medieval to modern times — and prepare them for safe storage, display and study. Technicians at the Conservation Lab retain as much of the original material as possible, make any necessary repairs and build custom archival cases. Preservation work extends to optical media such as video games, laser discs, CDs and DVDs.

Photo: Andrew Brodhead

Cartographic Treasures

The David Rumsey Map Center, established in Green Library in 2016, exemplifies the university’s trailblazing spirit. The first-of-its-kind map center is fully integrated with technology and Geographical Information Services software, offering state-of-the-art research facilities and methods. This collection of more than 200,000 rare maps, atlases, globes, pocket maps, maritime charts, and surveying and navigation instruments, dates back to the 16th century.

Explore Stanford University Libraries & Academic Information Resources

  • Cecil H. Green Library 
  • Bowes Art & Architecture Library
  • Branner Earth Sciences Library & Map Collections
  • Classics Library
  • Cubberley Education Library
  • East Asia Library
  • Graduate School of Business Library
  • Hoover Institution Library & Archives
  • Lane Medical Library
  • Harold A. Miller Library at Hopkins Marine Station
  • Music Library and Archive of Recorded Sound
  • Robert Crown Law Library
  • Robin Li and Melissa Ma Science Library
  • Tanner Philosophy Library
  • Terman Engineering Library