Law Library, Historical & Special Collections

In response to the challenges posed by COVID-19, Harvard University is transitioning to virtual instruction for graduate and undergraduate classes. The Harvard Law School Library's Historical & Special Collections is ready to help you plan remote sessions, activities, and access to digitized materials. Please email us at specialc@law.harvard.edu for full details. 

With nearly 11,000 linear feet of manuscripts, over 250,000 rare books, and more than 70,000 visual images—photographs, prints, paintings, and objects—Historical & Special Collections houses one of the world's most comprehensive collections of research materials for the study of law, legal history, and the history of the Harvard Law School. Open to all researchers, HSC's mission is to acquire, catalog, preserve, and share its collections, which span many formats and many jurisdictions worldwide. HSC has a robust digitization program and actively adds to its digital collections

Recent classes at the Law Library, Historical & Special Collections include Tangible Things, Global Law, Global History: A Comparative Perspective and History of Evidence.

Staff Services

  • Assistance with presentation of materials in class
  • Assistance with selection of materials
  • Bibliography of materials used in class
  • Pre-class planning appointment
  • Tour
  • Pre-class appointment for instructor (required for first time requester, recommended for everyone)
  • Ongoing reference assistance for students interested in using collections for course assignments
  • Creation of library research guide for class
  • Introduction to Archives and Special Collections Research
  • Synchronous discussions and/or breakout room activities
  • Asynchronous activity design and monitoring

Technology Available

  • Computer and data projector
  • Wifi
  • Canvas course librarian

Administrative Information

  Class limit: 48

The Law Library, Historical & Special Collections does not have a publicly available calendar. When making a request, please submit with your preferred times and a staff member will get back to you.