Rare Book & Manuscript Library


In order to use the collections, all visitors to the Rare Book & Manuscript Library are required to create a Special Collections Research Account. Registering as a special collections user also allows you to request materials online before your visit.


Search Tools


The Columbia University Libraries online catalogue is a primary tool for locating RBML materials.

Archival Collections Portal

This portal provides access to records of archival collections at Columbia University Libraries, including finding aids, collection descriptions and available digital content, such as online exhibits and images.

Oral History Portal

Use this portal to explore the collections of the Columbia Center for Oral History (CCOH) Archives at RBML.


Quick Links

Current Exhibitions

Pride of Lions

Pride of Lions
Fifty Years of LGBT Activism at Columbia

Created by Barnard and Columbia students
Now through July 31, 2017
Chang Octagon Exhibition Room, Rare Book & Manuscript Library

"Pride of Lions," curated by Sarah Witte, Women, Gender & Sexuality Studies Librarian, is an exhibition devoted to exploring the history of LGBTQ activism at Columbia University.

Harper & Brothers to HarperCollins Publishers

Harper & Brothers to HarperCollins Publishers:
A Bicentennial Exhibition
January 24 to July 21, 2017
Kempner Gallery, Rare Book & Manuscript Library

The company that is now HarperCollins began as a small family business in 1817, publishing first as J. & J. Harper and as Harper & Brothers beginning in 1833. The company survived several fires and financial crises to become one of the biggest and most successful publishing companies in the United States by the middle of the nineteenth century. Today HarperCollins Publishers is considered one of the five most influential English-language publishers in the world.