Access to Collections

Finding materials

Collections which have been processed (prepared for researcher use by being arranged and described) are cataloged, and many of them also have more detailed descriptions. These collection guides, also called "finding aids," are available on the MASC website and in the Northwest Digital Archives.

Collection guides include background and summary information, and generally also a “container list“ reflecting the physical arrangement of the collection (contents of boxes and folders).

Small manuscript collections, usually consisting of a very small number of items, do not have collection guides on our website. Please contact MASC for assistance.

Unprocessed collections have not yet been arranged and described. They are listed in our Accession Register for Manuscripts and in our Accession Register for University Archives. In general, these collections are available for use, but in some cases there may be access restrictions due to donor requirements, or the condition or nature of the materials.

Search the library catalog for MASC materials:

 

Search the MASC website (including collection guides) by keyword:


Browse Guides

Manuscript Collection

University Archives Collection

Guides by title

Historical Photograph Collection

Guides by title or subject


Assistance

Please contact us for assistance in identifying, locating, and using MASC materials.

Collection use

In most cases, items from MASC collections have not been digitized and are not available online. Please visit MASC to use collections on-site, or contact us to request copies.

These materials are available for use by the Washington State University community and the general public. Access is provided in the Donald W. Bushaw reading room in MASC, located in the Terrell Library, down one floor from the entrance. Researchers are required to register, use great care in handling materials, maintain the order and arrangement of collections, and follow staff instructions.

Understanding our collection numbers

Processed manuscript collections are identified by collection numbers, or "call numbers" beginning with the term "Cage" (for example, Cage 442). Processed WSU Archives collections begin with the term "Archives." Small manuscript collections usually have a 4-digit Cage number (for example, Cage 3089).

Many manuscript or archives collections in MASC have not yet been processed. These are identified with accession numbers beginning with "MS" or "UA" and the year of accession (for example, MS 2008-12). They are listed in the Accession Registers, but generally do not have catalog records or collection guides.

Numbers beginning with “CT” are assigned to collections consisting entirely of audio cassette tapes.

Numbers beginning with “PC” are assigned to collections consisting primarily of photographs.

Numbers beginning with “WSU” are from the WSU Publications collection.