Avery Library

General Information

Avery Architectural & Fine Arts Library has transferred collections to ReCAP since 2002.  With the exception of Ware, all collections are non-circulating.  Avery Library has accessioned mainly print collections; some archival collections are in both ReCAP general shelving and cold storage.  General collections can be requested by patrons (with active UNI) via CLIO.  Special collections require staff mediation to retrieve (via Restricted Access Request).  Appointment times must be made with Avery staff to view special collections.

Contact information for access to Avery off-site collections:

Avery CLIO Locations and Customer Codes

Avery Library has seven CLIO locations assigned for Offsite collections:

  • off,ave : general Avery architecture collection (noncirc, AR)
  • off,avda : archival collection of Avery Drawings & Archives (noncirc, AC and AD)
  • off,avr :  theses and dissertations (noncirc, AV)
  • off,far : theses and disseratations (noncirc, AV)
  • off,fax : general Fine Arts collection (noncirc, AR)
  • off,vmc : archival collection of images from the Visual Media Center (noncirc, AD)
  • off,war : general, circulating collection (circ, CU)

Avery Library collections correspond to 6 different customer codes:

  • AC : used only for archival collections in cold storage deliverable only to Avery Drawings & Archives (off,avda)
  • AD : archival collections deliverable only to Avery Drawings & Archives (off,avda)
  • AR : general, non-circulating print collections deliverable only to Avery Library Circulation (off,ave and off,fax)
  • AV : special print collections deliverable only to Avery Drawings & Archives (off,avr and off,far)
  • CU : allow delivery to all CUL and ReCAP partner libraries (off,war)

Avery Library has progressed through several phases of transfer from on-campus shelving to ReCAP.  The initial phase included transfers of 10-prefix barcoded collections from Clancy-Cullen's temporary shelving facility in the Bronx.

The first on-campus phase of barcoding for ReCAP involved books shelved in the Business Library basement.  All items shelved in Business basement had call numbers starting "A" (not "AA").  Processing was conducted by an outside firm using dumb AR barcodes.  [Kitty will follow up with details]

Phases of smart barcoding include:  2002/2003 (AR5),  2006-2008 (AR6) and 2010 (AR6).  Collections have been transferred from several physical locations: Business basement, Avery Library Levels 100, 200 and 300, [TK]

Beginning in 2010 barcoding focused on Folio, FF, and triple folio size volumes to create growth space for LC classified collections.

Circulation Desk Reference

General Reference

  • Patrons place unmediated requests for ReCAP collections via CLIO.  In the CLIO item view the Location displays "Offsite" and there is a gray, clickable "Request from Offsite" button.
  • The terms "ReCAP" and "Offsite" are used interchangeably.  "Offsite" is the preferred term for public display.
  • Any active UNI is valid to place requests via CLIO.  To place an EDD request the patron must have active borrowing privileges in good standing.
  • Quick link to ReCAP Request Forms.  Use this to place Mediated Requests on behalf of library patrons who do not have an active UNI.
  • Mediated Request for Patrons : Guide to placing mediated requests for patrons.
  • A notification email is sent at the moment a request is submitted.
  • After daily delivery to Circulation, staff send e-mail notification using rus.  Remember to type "rus" at the $ prompt in Cunix.
  • Contact recap@library.columbia.edu at any time with questions or problems.

Current Practice

  • CUL Shipping & Receiving (107 Butler) delivers totes to Avery Library circulation desk every morning, usually before 12:00pm, sometimes as late as 2:00pm
  • Deliveries
    Day-time staff person has primary responsibility for unpacking & processing.  Delivery processing includes checking and filing the shipping manifest, charging to Avery Library hold shelf (Y777401417), e-mail notification via rus and creating a hold slip.
  • Back-up staffing is the Circ supervisor or swing-shift staff person
  • Circulation
    Circulation staff charge circulating collections using the Butler Circulation Desk happening location.  Non-circulating items may be charged to a carrel or given to patron without charging in Voyager.  All items may be returned to the hold shelf for further consultation.
  • Returns
    Circulation staff discharge all items using the Avery or Butler Circulation Desk happening location.  Ignore all routing slips.
  • Packing
    Day-time staff person.  Return processing includes packing ReCAP returns safely in gray totes, sealing lid with a plastic tie and reversing the delivery label to read "RECAP."  The day-time staff person processes outgoing returns according to standard guidelines.
  • EDD issues
    Avery Library alias avery@library.columbia.edu (Kitty Chibnik).

Other Notes

CLIO Location Displays

  • off,avda
    Corresponds to customer code AD.  Requires staff place Restricted Access Request.  Deliverable only to Avery Drawings & Archives; non-circulating.
  • off,ave
    Display "Offsite" includes note that it is part of an Avery-owned collection, requestable for delivery via CLIO.  The only delivery option is the Avery Library Circulation Desk.
  • off,avr
    Corresponds to customer code AV.  Requires staff place Restricted Access Request.  Deliverable only to Avery Classics; non-circulating.
  • off,far
    Corresponds to customer code AV.  Requires staff place Restricted Access Request.  Deliverable only to Avery Classics; non-circulating.
  • off,fax
    Display "Offsite" includes note that is is part of an Avery-owned collection, requestable for delivery via CLIO.  The only delivery option is the Avery Library Circulation Desk.
  • off,vmc
    All corresponding bibliographic records are suppressed in CLIO and do not display.
  • off,war
    Display "Offsite" matches other, circulating collections that have CU barcodes.  Deliverable to all campus locations; circulating.

Visual Media Center

Donated in 2007 by the Visual Media Center.  Visual Media Center collection of images was transfered to ReCAP in bulk FY08.  All objects are linked on 30 suppressed BIBLs, organized by geographical location or subject.

e.g. BIBL# 10179080, 245 $a Visual Media Center historical photograph collection. Fogg Museum.

Orphan Barcodes

Initial project to investigate orphan barcodes at Avery began in Spring 2009 with ReCAP intern project.  Project focused on orphan, smart barcodes with prefix AR5 and AR6.  Results:

  • Flowchart for processing orphaned barcodes
  • 118 barcodes resolved with help from Avery Staff

In Summer 2010 project continued with analysis of orphan, dumb barcodes.  Related projects continued with a large-scale orphan barcode project.  Follow-up work has been completed by Kitty Chibnik and Zack Lane as time permits.

  • Call numbers include subject "A" (not "AA"), which were shelved in the Business basement and moved en masse early in the history of ReCAP.  Items with this call number can not be shelved onsite.  Some may have mis-keyed call numbers
  • Leave aside all duplicate copies for Avery bibliographer decision
  • Multi-volume sets and serials require Avery bibliographer attention


Chart illustrates the accession of orphan, dumb barcodes at ReCAP.  Data extracted from CUL accession data, July 2010.  As orphans are processed, this data disappears.

Correlation can be seen between large-scale smart barcoding projects and the accession of orphans at ReCAP.

Other Notes

  • Bibliographers may opt to add 900 $a Reviewed: retain on-site (Ctrl + Shft + R) note to HLDG record.  This note is used to exclude titles from automatic selection during a smart barcoding project.
  • Avery off-site holdings that duplicate off-site circulating collections are subject to request failure.   All duplicate copy-failures are resolved by ReCAP Coordinator.
  • To allow staff to place requests via Restricted Access Request mechanism, contact the ReCAP Coordinator: zl2114@columbia.edu or (212) 851-5621.

Avery Drawings & Archives

Appointments to view collections may be made via the Avery D&A alias, avery-drawings@libraries.cul.columbia.edu.  Deliveries are made to a secure drop-off point.  Avery D&A staff contacts the ReCAP courier by telephone when material has been staged for return.

At the inception of ReCAP in 2002, staff was asked to project an estimate annual quota for Avery Drawings & Archives.  A rough figure of 500-600 boxes was suggested.  The first accession from D&A came in October 2006 when the Emery Roth & Sons collection was sent directly, unprocessed from where it was stored.  It was initially suggested that ReCAP would store the Libraries' most valuable collections.  Staff has opted to maintain most high-value collections on campus.

A major renovation in 2003 made the campus conditions more suitable for collection storage.  Currently on-campus storage space is near capacity.  It is important to maintain in-house swing space for incoming donations.

Since 2006, the bulk of transferred collections have been both processed and previously shelved on-campus.  The key criteria for selection are condition and usage.  Condition implies both that the material will benefit from the superb environmental conditions at ReCAP and that the collections can withstand the rigors of transit to and from the facility.  D&A collections sent to ReCAP are expected to include low-use material.  Only fully processed collections will be candidates for transfer.

Collection growth is expected to consist of mainly post-WWII materials.  It is expected that these collections will contained proportionally more architectural drawings than pre-WWII collections.  D&A core staff are able to process approximately 50 boxes per month.  Annual new accessions may be expected to be 500-600 boxes.

Collections sent to ReCAP are housed primarily in five types of enclosure.  A guide to barcode placement is linked on the main ReCAP website.

  • Banker's box (record carton or Paige box) : standard acid free box
  • Manuscript box (document box) : standard acid-free box for upright or flat material
  • Print box : used for photographs and other material intended to lie flat
  • Coroplast tubes : architectural drawings, come with standard dimensions [TK]
  • CMI box : made to size of individual item

Off-site Collection List : Master list of all Avery D&A collections at ReCAP.  Includes name of collection, total item count and itemized container types.

Return Procedures : Instructions for packing collections for return to ReCAP.  All Avery D&A collections are returned via a secure drop-off point.


  • Can the various collection counts of off-site D&A collections be reconciled?
  • How should delivery arrive if only one or few items are requested? i.e. the metal cart is unnecessary
  • Can staff calculate "book-equivalents" according to box size? (help better estimate ReCAP space use/demand)
  • Which is ReCAP's biggest delivery day, Monday or Tuesday? (D&A staff can schedule patron visits around peak delivery)  Answer: Tuesday.
  • How are arch drawing boxes currently shelved at ReCAP? How many fit per shelf?



  • Avery Circulation Data (.pptx) : Updated through FY13.  Summary of circulation activity of Avery collections and the Avery happening location, including system-wide data.  Primarily concerned with on campus collections.  Special focus on patron group ACO, Avery Carrels.
  • Avery Circulation Data (.pptx) : Updated through FY12.  Summary of circulation activity of Avery collections and the Avery happening location, including system-wide data.  Primarily concerned with on campus collections.  Special focus on patron group ACO, Avery Carrels.

ReCAP Data


  • Accessions
    Avery-owned collections that have been transfered to the ReCAP facility.
  • Requests
    Total items requested from Avery-owned collections at ReCAP.
  • Deliveries
    Items physically delivered to the Avery locations.  Includes items from all ReCAP collections, not only Avery-owned.
  • EDD
    Total number of EDD (electronic document delivery) requests for Avery collections.  A subset of total "Requests."

Primary Statistics

  Accessions Requests Deliveries EDD
FY02 38,230 256 293 13
FY03 52,749 1,989 2,379 16
FY04 276 2,735 3,358 51
FY05 1,369 2,960 4,019 61
FY06 12,270 3,358 4,872 100
FY07 47,034 4,858 6,369 201
FY08 18,079 6,320 8,223 229
FY09 20,960 8,083 9,746 304
FY10 21,067 8,330 10,066 313
FY11 15,125 9,041 10,610 344
FY12 21,788 9,870 11,079 220
FY13 22,029 10,616 11,572 211
FY14 45,548 12,214 13,070 300
TOTAL 271,030 80,630 95,655 2,063
Request Rate = 4.21%



Avery Library Barcode Clean-up Project (January to May 2010)

  • Primary goals
    Resolve all remaining leftover smart barcodes from previous phases of ReCAP transfer. Resolve all items that were charged to MATOB status patron at the time of local (onsite) smart barocding [approx. 1991]. Items charged to the status patron (AVEMSBC001) are called MATOBs (MATOB = Missing At Time Of Barcoding); MATOB records also have AR smart barcodes in item record.
  • Secondary goals
    Collect accurate statistics; improve bibliographic control of Avery Library collections; provide Avery bibliographers with opportunity to replace missing titles; address uniform encoding of Avery Library primary collections; transfer several hundred monographs to ReCAP; collaborate with Avery Library staff to solve bibliographic problems.
  • Other goals
    Resolve AR-prefix orphan barcodes; eliminate CLIO location ave,anx2 and fax,anx2; identify other unassigned offsite barcodes using inventory reports; ensure that materials selected by bibliographers to remain onsite do not become candidates for off-site transfer in future phases; assure that all Avery collections located "Offsite" have request buttons.
  • History
    • The earliest phase of off-site barcoding in [2002/2003] involved 10-prefix barcodes. In [2003/2004] and [2006/2007] AR-prefix smart barcodes were assigned to single volume monographs in the Avery Library primary collection. Staff was assigned to match bibliographic information on the barcode to physical volumes. Titles not found on the shelf were marked with a “O” or “Ø” and left on the sheet. Items accessioned at ReCAP have CLIO locations off,ave or off,fax.
    • In 2009 AV-prefix smart barcodes were assigned to theses and dissertations in Avery Classics collections. Items accessioned at ReCAP have CLIO locations off,avr or off,far.
    • Avery Library staff took subsequent actions to resolve leftover barcodes. Student workers were assigned to organize and search for leftover smart barcodes. There has been some systematic work on the leftover smart barcodes and MATOBs at CUL. Initial project work will be based on Avery staff experience.
  • Staffing
    Two library school interns (14 hrs/week total); professional and support staff input (7 hrs/week)
  • Documentation

Obsolete CLIO Locations/Status Patrons

CLIO Loc/Status Patron Items
Date Resolved
ave,anx2 1,347  
fax,anx2 430  
war,anx2 337  
AVEMSBC001 248  


ReCAP User Inquiry Alias: recap@library.columbia.edu

Supervisor, ReCAP Access Services: Jennifer Loubriel

Phone: (212) 854-3542

E-mail: jll2223@columbia.edu