General Information

The Burke Library Archives consist of over 300 separate collections of personal papers and institutional records covering a broad range of themes of interest to the researcher. The Archives reflect the Seminary's leadership in social issues, religious morals and theological thought. Important new collections, such as those in the Archives of Women in Theological Scholarship, continue to be added.

The collections are organized into six main record groups:

  • Union Theological Seminary Archives
    The archives contain institutional and administrative records of the Seminary, combined with the papers of many organizations, scholars, pastors, laypersons and others connected with the school.
  • Auburn Theological Seminary Archives
    The archives include early institutional records and papers of Auburn faculty and alumni.
  • Missionary Research Library Archives
    The collection constitutes a unique record of Protestant missionary activity throughout the world and provides a fascinating array of materials related to the geographic, sociopolitical, religious, and cultural settings in which this activity occurred.
  • William Adams Brown Ecumenical Library Archives
    The archives were founded in 1945 and contain individual papers and organizational records, relating to the modern ecumenical movement.
  • Archives of Women in Theological Scholarship
    The archives document the history of the women who have made significant contributions to movements for progressive religious and social change since 1900. The Archives collects the personal papers, scholarly work, oral histories, and audiovisual records of feminist, womanist, and mujerista scholars, clergy, and laywomen, beginning with former and present Union faculty members, alumnae, and their colleagues.
  • General Collections
    The collections consist of a growing number of varied and interesting archival collections unrelated to the previous collection themes.

Archives Service & Assistance

To arrange access to these archival materials, please make your request by filling out our Special Collections Request Form as far in advance as possible.

If you have any questions about these collections, please contact:

Access to Archives Information

Finding aids of collections are becoming increasingly available online in PDF format.  When available, you will find the PDFs linked from the Archives collections pages listed above.  Many other collections have older finding aids and inventories in paper form. All are shelved in the Main Reading Room, Level 3, but many are now available in a scanned form which can be e-mailed to any enquirer.  To request assistance with a finding aid, please contact:

Archives are available for consultation by appointment to registered readers in the Rare Books Reading Area of the Main Reading Room during the hours listed below.

For further information about paper or digital reproduction, contact

Hours of Access to Archives

Normal hours: Monday to Friday 10:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. and 2:00 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.

In order to ensure speedy and efficient access to the Burke Library Archive Collections, please contact us as far in advance as possible.