libraries

Research Librarian at Schlesinger Library

Schlesinger Library collections include U.S. history since the mid-19th century, specializing in women’s history, and librarians are available to work with faculty to find creative and experimental ways for students to engage with archival material.  

Using Harvard Library Collections

Archives and special collections at Harvard support research by Harvard faculty and students, as well as an international community of scholars. An overview of guidelines and policies governing the use of material is provided on this page. 

Primary sources: Teaching humanity in history

Brekus

Catherine Brekus, Charles Warren Professor of the History of Religion in America, worked with Schlesinger Research Librarian Amanda Strauss this semester to design a session for her freshman seminar on Christianity and slavery: “When I arrived for our meeting, there was a table full of materials for me to look at—Amanda did so much work.”

The benefits: Handling primary source material connects students to humanity: “these were real people, with real lives, concerns, joys, and sorrows.” She and Strauss created four stations of 19th century sources illustrating perspectives on slavery, including Harriett Beecher Stowe’s personal copy of Uncle Tom’s Cabin and a diary with no mention of the Civil War or slavery—Strauss’s idea, to round out the variety of human experiences of the era. Read more about Primary sources: Teaching humanity in history