Hours and Location

Archives & Special Collections
Room 581, MacOdrum Library
Carleton University
1125 Colonel By Drive
Ottawa, ON
K1S 5B6

Monday 9am - 12pm; 1pm - 4pm
Tuesday 9am - 12pm; 1pm - 4pm
Wednesday 9am - 12pm; 1pm - 4pm
Thursday 9am - 12pm; 1pm - 4pm
Friday  9am - 12pm; 1pm - 4pm
Saturday Closed
Sunday  Closed


After 4pm, (when the door is locked) clients may ask for entry at the Services Desk for access to the Ottawa Resource Collection. There is no overnight access after 11:30pm, when the Library is open 24 hours.

For more help with the Ottawa Resource Collection, feel free to contact the Coordinator of the Ottawa Resource Collection: monica.ferguson@carleton.ca


For general inquiries, use the Contact Us form, or send us an email at asc@library.carleton.ca

Staff Listing

Chris Trainor, Department Head
613-520-2600 ext. 6030

Lloyd Keane, Archives and Rare Book Coordinator
613-520-2600 ext. 2739

Monica Ferguson, Archives Project and Ottawa Resource Room Coordinator
613-520-2600 ext. 8125

Alexander MacLennan, Archives and Special Collections Assistant
613-520-2600 ext. 8170

Heather LeRoux, Archives and Special Collections Assistant
613-520-2600 ext. 5028



Archives and Special Collections Mandate

Statement of Purpose

Archives and Research Collections (ARC) was established in 2008. Its purpose is to serve research, teaching, and learning at Carleton University. Working within the framework of the Library’s general collections and gifts policies, ARC:

  • Acquires, preserves, and makes available for long-term use its archival and rare books collections holdings.
  • Promotes and encourages the use of its collections.
  • Supports those engaged in research and instruction.
  • Collaborates with other institutions, associations, organizations, and individuals to promote and further the archive profession and develop strong specialized research holdings.
  • Digitizes materials as appropriate.
  • Accepts archival material in all formats (e.g., textual, born digital)

Academic Archival Collections

ARC actively pursues, acquires, and makes available (regardless of format) archival collections from individuals, associations, and organizations. ARC also provides ongoing practicum education opportunities for students. In order to build and maintain a collection that will be of continuing research value, the collection policy is based on the following:

  • The goals and objectives of the University Library and ARC
  • The strengths of the existing collections and the supporting collections of secondary works (e.g., the Douglas Cardinal, Heritage Canada Foundation, and Douglas Anglin collections)
  • The clientele served by the collection (e.g., faculty, graduates, undergraduates, members of the local community, visiting researchers, other archives and museums)
  • The collection policies of other archives in order that competition be avoided and research and scholarship served through co-operation and the sharing of information

Subject areas of particular interest are:

  • Art History
  • Architecture
  • Heritage Conservation
  • Music
  • Diaspora Studies
  • African Studies
  • Local and Public History
  • Business
  • Journalism
  • Sexuality Studies

Rare Book Collection

The rare book collection in ARC acquires material by actively purchasing items to support academic research and teaching at the University, and via gifts to the Library. In order to build the rare book collection, ARC:

  • Consults with Reference Services staff, faculty, and external experts when possible on future acquisitions.
  • Keeps current on relevant areas and trends in scholarly study within the University and supports this study through the acquisition of rare books.
  • Supports the archives and research collections through the acquisition of rare books.

The acquisition criteria also help to ensure that the rare book collection remains a viable tool for research. In general, acquisitions should meet at least one of the follow criteria:

  • Date to 1800 or earlier
  • Have a significant dollar value
  • Be of a limited print run of 200 copies or fewer

Subject areas of particular interest in ARC are:

  • Modern Canadian Poetry
  • Women/Gender Studies
  • Women’s History
  • History /Canadiana
  • Art History
  • Architecture
  • Industrial Design
  • Life Sciences (herbals/alchemy/botany
  • Games
  • Magic and Conjuring
  • Religion
  • Journalism
  • Fine Arts
  • Broadsides

Existing subject interests will be enhanced through active collecting. New collection areas will be explored as required to reflect the academic interests at Carleton. ARC will passively acquire rare books through its donations and gifts when these offerings can enhance the current collection.

Items will not be housed in the rare book collection based solely on condition, unique size, or subject matter. ARC staff will provide preservation and conservation advice where necessary to assist with the housing of fragile materials elsewhere in the library.

University Heritage

ARC operates as a resource facility for the heritage and historical collections of Carleton University (1942 to present day), including special collections such as St. Patrick’s College, the Ottawa Ladies’ College, and the Canadian Officers Training Corps. ARC does not have responsibility for the Corporate Archives of the University. ARC does encourage the deposit of:

  • All publications issued by the University
  • Publications about Carleton University produced externally
  • Audio-visual materials produced by and/or about the University to document its development,  such as photographs and negatives, films, oral history interviews, audio and video tapes
  • Artifacts deemed to complement and enhance the archival collection, such as medals, ceremonial items, plaques, and other ephemera

In an effort to ensure the most comprehensive historical record of the University, ARC identifies and acquires those University records and related archival materials from sources other than the University that are of enduring historical value. This material is gathered through the acquisition of private fonds from individuals and organizations associated with the University.

Gifts: Processing and Receipts

Materials are accepted with the understanding that ownership transfers to the Library. When a gift is accepted by the Library, it is without conditions, restrictions, or commitment on the part of the Library about how, when, or whether it will be processed for the collection. We reserve the right to decide on the retention, location, archival description, use, and disposition of gifts. The Library does generally not provide transportation for gifts and does not return gifts or portions of gifts which are not accepted.

All donations to ARC must adhere to the University’s gift acceptance and gifts in kind policies. Tax receipts are discussed on a case-by-case basis.

approved by Library Management Group
April 26, 2013