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Archives and Special Collections at Penn State Harrisburg

This guide provides an overview of the resources available from Archives and Special Collections in the Madlyn L. Hanes Library, part of the Penn State University Libraries, at Penn State Harrisburg.

About the Repository

Archives and Special Collections reading roomArchives and Special Collections in the Madlyn L. Hanes Library at Penn State Harrisburg is located on the 3rd floor of the library (Room 303).  Designed as part of the library, which opened in January 2000, the repository is comprised of over 4,100 square feet, including a 1,600-square foot Reading Room that can accommodate individual readers/researchers as well as students and faculty in programs at Penn State Harrisburg.  Please Note:  During the Spring 2024 semester, the archives is open by appointment only Monday-Wednesday.    

Featuring its premier and largest archival resource, the Alice K. Marshall Women's History Collection, as well as the Pennsylvania Center for Folklore Collection, the archives is also proud to preserve the history of Penn State Harrisburg in the College History Archives.  The Penn State Harrisburg College History Archives (CHA) documents the college's academic community and campus life since 1966.  The archives also maintains several other small archival collections, including the Herb Field Papers and Patriot-News Editorials, Lena A. Girolami Collection, Fred M. Greguras Camp Meade Collection, Holocaust and Jewish Studies Collection, J. Randall Plummer Photography Collection, Three Mile Island Collection, and a small collection of special interest materials.


Collection Strengths

In addition to collecting and preserving Penn State Harrisburg's history, collections and primary source materials in the repository are strong in the following areas, which are listed alphabetically below:  


Mission Statement

Archival and historical collections of primary sources are integral to learning throughout life.  They document the ideas, creativity, and lives of people and organizations and provide a glimpse into history. 

In accordance with the Penn State University Libraries’ Policy UL-SP03, the mission of Archives and Special Collections is to appraise, acquire, make accessible, preserve, and promote specialized research collections that support the College’s academic curriculum and document the history of Penn State Harrisburg.  Toward this end, Archives and Special Collections supports research and lifelong learning for students, faculty, staff, alumni, and the general public through various educational and outreach initiatives such as archival workshops, student internships, and in-library and online exhibition programs. 

Archives and Special Collections is committed to serving an instrumental role in fulfilling the mission of the Madlyn L. Hanes Library as well as the overall missions of the Penn State University Libraries and Penn State Harrisburg.


Vision Statement

By 2024-2025, Archives and Special Collections will have the infrastructure and expertise to provide effective archival management, develop educational programming, and support archival literacy using primary resources, including a nationally-recognized women’s history collection, American and Pennsylvania history materials, and the records of the college and community at Penn State Harrisburg.  In addition to establishing and preserving the documentary memory of Penn State Harrisburg, Archives and Special Collections aspires to become a regionally-valued archival repository by collecting the papers, records, and other materials of individuals, groups, and organizations significant to the history of south central Pennsylvania.  In support of the University Libraries’ strategic plan, Archives and Special Collections will also seek new opportunities to partner with other cultural and educational organizations within the region, such as the Middletown Area Historical Society, the Middletown Public Library, the Historical Society of Dauphin County, and the Pennsylvania State Archives, to connect students and scholars with primary sources.