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Dalton Reading Room


Our service point

Special Collections and University Archives offers research assistance and access to rare books and archival materials in the Mary and Harry L. Dalton Rare Book and Manuscript Reading Room on the 10th floor of Atkins Library. (Directions).

Everyone is welcome

The Dalton Reading Room is free and open to the public, and we welcome researchers from across campus, the region, and the world.  Although those using rare books and archival materials have priority, the room is available for anyone seeking a quiet place to study.

Policies and procedures

Due to the unique and irreplaceable nature of the materials in our care, we ask that you abide by policies and procedures that will help ensure that these materials will be available to researchers for generations to come. 

  • In compliance with UNC Charlotte policy, face coverings must be worn at all times in the library, including in the Dalton room. This requirement is for all individuals regardless of vaccination status.
  • When you arrive on the 10th floor, please use the restroom to wash your hands. Hand sanitizer residue can damage the materials.

  • Do not bring food or drink into the Dalton Reading Room.
  • Leave personal belongings such as backpacks, bags, and coats at the front of the room.
  • You may have your phone, laptop, pencil, and paper with you at the research table.
  • View only one folder at a time.

  • Present photographic identification (university ID, driver's license, etc.) and fill out a registration form. Registration is required only once a year unless the research topic changes upon a subsequent visit.
  • Use materials only in the Reading Room. If you cannot access the Reading Room and require accommodations, please contact us at 704-687-1674 or
  • Take notes using only pencil and paper (or laptop computer).The use of ink pens is not allowed. Pencils will be provided upon request.
  • Use only one folder at a time, and use the cards provided to mark the place in the box from which a folder has been removed.
  • Handle items with care. Do not trace, write on, or fold materials. Do not write on paper that is placed on top of materials. Use all materials flat on the table or on a book cradle.
  • Do not change the order of folders in boxes or the order of documents in folders; if the order appears to have been disturbed, please notify staff. Before replacing folders in boxes, please straighten contents.
  • Do not remove photographs (including negatives and slides) from their protective sleeves. Cotton gloves will be provided for handling photographs if they are not sleeved.
  • Do not open books and lay them face down and do not use objects such as pencils as bookmarks. Books with sealed pages are to be separated only by staff.
  • Reproduction via self- scanning or taking images by tablet and phone cameras is allowed. There is no charge for use of department scanners. However, Special Collections staff may forbid the use of cameras or scanners if you mishandle material, or if your methods of reproduction pose any risk to our materials or cause disruption in the Reading Room.
  • We reserve the right to prevent duplication of materials if it will damage materials or if we understand there is intent to violate copyright.
  • Requests for materials will be accepted up to 30 minutes before closing; materials charged to researchers must be returned to the public service desk no later than 5 minutes before closing.