Special Collections supports teaching and research across a wide range of disciplines.  Our work supports the University's instruction, research, service and economic development programs, from the life sciences to the humanities.

The collections have research potential in specific types of illustrated books, in printing and the book arts, seventeenth and eighteenth century British religious thought, Plato and the Neoplationists, English book hands of the tenth to the twelfth century and University of Missouri-Columbia history.  More about our collections.

Our History

Special Collections evolved from a small collection of rare books housed in the library director’s office to a closed shelf collection administered by the Language/Literature Library and ultimately to a separately administered division of the University Libraries. In 2005, the Special Collections Division and the University Archives merged to become a single administrative unit called the Division of Special Collections, Archives, and Rare Books (SCARaB). The departments maintain their original locations in Ellis Library and Lewis Hall.  More about our history.