Special Collections

The Special Collections department collects materials of enduring historical and cultural value -- housing, preserving, and making accessible materials that are original, rare, unique, fragile, and archival. Our collections and staff support UMBC's research and educational mission and its dedication to cultural and ethnic diversity, social responsibility and lifelong learning.

Our diverse collections include a wide variety of formats such as rare books, photographs, manuscripts, archives, audio and visual recordings, digital items and artifacts. They are available for research use on site by faculty, students, staff, visiting scholars, and the general public.

Questions? Contact us at: 410-455-2353
Email: speccoll@umbc.edu
Fax: 410-455-1567 

Special Collections Search

Advanced Search


Use this search to find:

  • Photography collections (portfolios, digital images, historic equipment, and related archival collections)
  • Archives finding aids (University Archives, Maryland history collections, Literary manuscripts, and the Center for Biological Sciences Archives)
  • Popular culture materials (comics, science fiction fanzines & pulps, adventure & detective pulps)
  • Radical literature
  • Maryland & regional maps
  • Artwork & posters
  • University publications

Search Tips

  • Use quotes for phrases, e.g. "Spring Grove"
  • Or, use AND for phrases, e.g. Spring AND Grove
  • For name searches, use last name, first name in quotes, e.g. "Adams, Ansel"

Library Catalog (catalogusmai)



Use this search for:

  • Photography books & serials (Bafford)
  • Science fiction books & serials (Rosenfeld)
  • Maryland history & serials (Arnold/Howard)
  • Artists' books
  • Rare books
  • Alternative Press Center Collection
  • Theses and dissertations
UMBC Digital Collections

Search for


Lewis Hine photograph of child laborer

Use this search to find digital images, digitized books, archives, organizational and personal papers, reports, playbills and more from:

Special Collections Services


Special Collections Hours

  • Monday - Friday 1pm - 4pm
  • Thursday 1pm - 8pm
  • By appointment during Summer Term, Winter Term, and Intersession

Gallery Hours

  • Monday - Friday 10am - 5pm
  • Thursday 10am - 8pm
  • Saturday - Sunday 12noon - 5pm