The Reading Room is open Monday through Friday, except University Holidays. During the summer (May-August), the Reading Room is open Monday through Thursday. Due to ongoing Washington, DC and University regulations, access to the Reading Room must be scheduled in advance. Access is limited to one patron at a time, for a single two-hour block of time per day. These blocks of time are: 10:00am - 12:00pm, and 2:00pm - 4:00pm. To safely accommodate as many patrons as possible, patrons are limited to one time block per day, and two blocks per week.
All patrons must wear facial coverings while onsite and maintain social distance (at least 6 feet from staff and other patrons). Please visit the Catholic University’s COVID-19 page for the latest information: https://communications.catholic.edu/coronavirus/index.html
Please be aware of the DC Mayor's Orders on Travel. Those traveling from the states on this list are required to self-quarantine for 14 days upon arrival in DC. Due to these requirements, we cannot guarantee appointments to those traveling from listed states, and we may have to cancel appointments should your state be added to the list. Each Monday, the DC Mayor's office adds/removes restrictions on travel to/from certain states. You may see the list and its requirements here: https://coronavirus.dc.gov/
If unable to visit our site, please refer to our virtual reference policies to see how we may assist your research remotely.
Virtual Reference Policy
We welcome all reference requests and inquiries about Catholic University and our collections. Either due to distance or ongoing travel restrictions, we are extending our long-distance and virtual services to better provide remote reference, reproduction, and access. You may send an inquiry by e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org) or phone: 202-319-5065.
Virtual Reference Service
The Reading Room is open Monday through Friday, except University Holidays. During the summer (May-August), the Reading Room is open, Monday through Thursday. Due to ongoing DC and University regulations, access to the Reading Room must be scheduled in advance. Access is limited to 1-2 patrons at a time, for two (2) hour blocks of time: 10:00am - 12:00pm, and 2:00pm - 4:00pm.
For patrons unable to visit the Reading Room, the reference staff can provide virtual reference services via email, phone, or Zoom/Google Meet. Virtual appointments may be arranged with staff to discuss our collections, via Zoom or Google Meet. Staff will provide the link invite for these appointments and may offer up to 20 minutes per meeting. Staff cannot perform general research on behalf of patrons during these interviews, but may address questions, discuss a patron's research topic and our collections, and show pre-selected documents during these appointments.
Virtual Class Visits and Tours
The staff of the Catholic University Special Collections value the educational function of our archives, museum, and rare books collections. When classes or patrons are unable to visit, we make a variety of virtual services available to educators:
Staff are available to present to classes and educators on a range of topics related to our collections and online educational resources.
We are available to present both general and specifically themed archival tours for educators, university staff, and researchers.
Staff are available to offer both general and specifically themed archival tours for educators, university staff, and researchers.
These sessions can be held live via Zoom or Google Meet, or pre-recorded. Live sessions will not be recorded or shared without the permission of the educator.
Please contact Maria Mazzenga at 202-319-5065 or Mazzenga@cua.edu to discuss presentation possibilities or to schedule a tour.
We do provide photoduplication services for remote researchers, but do have a limit of 5 folder requests per month per researcher. These requests will be completed in the order received, and may take up to two weeks to complete.
Materials may be photocopied in accordance with the limits of the Copyright Act and archives policies. The archives may set restrictions to protect fragile, damaged, or oversize materials. The archives staff will make all copies. Charges for photocopies are as follows: 10 cents per copy for the first 100 letter size (8x11) copies; 20 cents per copy for letter size copies 101 and thereafter; 25 cents per copy for all legal size (11x14) copies; and 50 cents per copy for all oversize (11x17) copies. There is a postage and handling charge for any/all photocopies that are mailed. Prepayment is required prior to the mailing of any/all photocopies.
In addition, while the Archives retains at least three (3) and sometimes more copies of original documents, especially printed and published materials, these are NOT for distribution to researchers and other interested parties.