About the Special Collections

at the African-American Research Library and Cultural Center (AARLCC)

The African-American Research Library and Cultural Center Special Collections

The mission of the Special Collections is to collect, preserve and provide access to research materials focusing on the history and culture of people of African, African-American and Caribbean descent.

The Special Collections houses over one million items, including rare books, artifacts, artwork, manuscripts, and reference materials. The majority of the holdings are secured in a humidity and temperature-controlled storage area. The librarian on duty in the reading room provides reference services and retrieves materials for customers. To learn more about the collections click here.

The Reading Room

The Special Collections Reading Room provides researchers with comfortable study tables, state-of-the-art computers with Internet access, microfilm and microfiche reader with printing and emailing capabilities, a media room which houses a DVD/VHS player, a 32-inch television and a professional-quality analog DJ turntable.

Using the Special Collections

Materials in the collections are accessible in the Special Collections’ Reading Room and are reference materials, which are non-circulating. To access the materials, researchers must complete a Patron Registration Form and show a Broward County Library Card or government issued I.D.

No large items such as briefcases, purses, backpacks, coats or other bulky items are allowed in the Reading Room; there are lockers available to secure these items.

No ink pens, markers or crayons are allowed in the reading room; notes should be taken in pencil. Personal laptops are allowed provided laptop cases are stored in the lockers available.


Photocopying Policy and Rates

Special Collections staff will consider requests for photo duplication of materials when such duplication can be done without injury to the materials and does not violate copyright restrictions or restrictions imposed by the donors. Single copies will be provided for the researcher’s personal use and should not be reproduced further. Supplying a photocopy is not an authorization to publish.

Photocopies are limited to 50 pages per item and cost 15 cents per page.

Open to the Public

Call 954-357-6018 for information or to make appointments.

Donations to the Special Collections

For more information about donating material to the Special Collections please contact Elaina Norlina, Executive Director/Regional Library Manager at 954-357-6282.

For more information from the Society of American Archivists on donating your family papers or artifacts to a repository please click here.