Blogs

Reuther Library Access Update, Fall 2020

The Reuther Library, Archives of Labor and Urban Affairs continues to serve your needs as researchers with a focus on safety considerations to keep our staff, researchers, and communities healthy. We are pleased to share our plan for research operations this fall. Though we are not offering walk-in visits at this time, we have developed a plan for safely expanded access.  read more »

Detroit Revolutionary Movements Records now available online

Handbill, DRUM, 1968 (cropped)

The Walter P. Reuther Library, Archives of Labor and Urban Affairs is proud to announce that the Detroit Revolutionary Movements (DRM) Records are now freely available online.

These materials offer firsthand information about the demands, political viewpoints and allies of Black workers during the late 1960s and early 1970s. The records are especially relevant today as evidence of community-based activism that is formative to today’s social and political movements.  read more »

Appointment Details Fall 2020

Appointments for WSU affiliates will be available in 2-hour sessions (10-2 or 2-4), Monday through Thursday.

• Appointments must be made at least 4 business days in advance to allow us to retrieve your materials and quarantine them before your arrival.

• Appointments are available from 10-12 or 2-4. No researchers will be able to remain in the Reading Room during the midday break.

• We will schedule Reading Room appointments to enable us to complete our material quarantine and cleaning process.

• Visitors must complete the Campus Daily Screener. Please arrive on time as staffing is scheduled around your appointment.

• Researchers may request up to 6 boxes (please consult with archivist). No additional boxes can be pulled during your visit.

• Our research space only allows safe distance for a finite number of researchers, so if we are at capacity, we will help you select an alternate day/time for your appointment.

During your visit

• Researchers must wear a mask to enter the building and at all times during their visit. An archivist will greet you when you arrive and scan your QR code confirmation of Campus Daily Screener. Please make sure to keep a 6-foot distance from all others in the building. You will have a designated seat in the Reading Room to ensure a safe distance.

• Restrooms are located on either side of the Reading Room. Before touching materials, wash hands thoroughly. Alcohol-based sanitizers can damage documents.

• Additional Reading Room guidelines apply.

Please do not travel to the library if you have not received an appointment confirmation email from us. If you are not feeling well, we are happy to reschedule your appointment for everyone’s safety.

If you require more than one appointment, please discuss this with an archivist before you schedule your visit.

We recommend downloading a pdf scanning app for your phone or tablet in order to quickly make digital surrogates of material. As always, material cannot be photocopied and our current staffing model does not allow for same-day scanning requests.

Fall 2020 Reuther Access FAQ

1. What is the best way to learn more about the Reuther’s collections remotely?

Please begin your research by visiting the library’s collection management system http://archives.wayne.edu or by using the advanced search function at the top right of this page.

2. I’m having a hard time navigating your finding aids online. Can I talk to an archivist about my topic before I have boxes selected?

Yes! We’re happy to offer consultation on search terms or how to find the collections you might need. Email reutherreference@wayne.edu. We are also able to speak with you via Teams (or Zoom if you prefer).

3. Is the Reuther currently supporting classes or offering class visits?

Though we’re not offering in-person class visits right now, we are still working with faculty to support classes remotely and students are welcome to visit the reading room for research on their own. Please contact meghan.courtney@wayne.edu if you would like to discuss adding archives content to your course.

4. Why do I have to schedule an appointment at least four days in advance?

The most recent research available from the REopening Archives, Libraries and Museums (REALM) project, a collaboration of the OCLC, Institute of Museum and Library Services, and Battelle, has found that a four-day quarantine is necessary to neutralize the SARS-CoV-2 virus on common archival materials. By scheduling an appointment four days in advance, we can ensure that the archival materials you wish to see have not been handled in at least four days. For more information see: https://www.webjunction.org/news/webjunction/test2-results.html

5. What are archivists doing if they’re not available in the reading room?

Most of the functions of the Reuther are continuing as normal. In addition to serving patron research requests remotely, staff continue to apply metadata, work on arrangement and description, develop classroom tools, work with donor organizations, conduct oral histories, produce podcasts, write blog posts, practice digital preservation, and reach out to potential material donors. If you would like to collaborate beyond a simple research request, please reach out.

6. What if I have material I’d like to donate to the Reuther?

Our field archivist Louis Jones would love to discuss your donation. Please contact him at louis.jones@wayne.edu

7. When will the reading room open to researchers outside of WSU?

At this time, we can’t be certain. As soon as we can safely host you in the reading room again, we will post notices here and on our social media accounts, listed at the top left of this page.

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