The CWRU Archives maintains the corporate memory of Case Western Reserve University by preserving and using University records and publications of continuing value. Materials in the Archives document the significant aspects of the University's development and serve as a convenient source of reliable information about University programs, people, policies, and property.
Anyone can use the CWRU Archives. Some material may be restricted in accordance with the Access Policy. The University depends on records to develop programs and services, make critical strategic decisions, protect property rights, manage projects, serve students, and generate revenue. The CWRU Archives helps busy staff manage University records by providing guidance on organizing, storing and disposing of records.
Due to the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) there are some changes in patron visits.
- Reading Room is now open to visitors with a CWRU ID. The Reading Room is closed through December 2020 to others. Please see section below entitled Archivist Research as an alternative to a visit.
- 2 visitors are allowed in the Reading Room at one time. Because of physical distancing rules, we can only accommodate 2 people at a time.
- Visitors must make an appointment.
- Visitors must wear a face mask.
If you have not done research in the CWRU Archives, here is what to expect and some suggestions for making the most out of your visit. Contact us before you visit. We will help you identify relevant sources and what, if any, access restrictions apply. Identifying relevant sources is not always as simple as it seems, so make this initial contact well in advance of a planned visit.
Make an appointment
We must have at least one business day’s notice to retrieve identified materials from storage. Identified materials means you know the record series or item exists in the Archives and that it is unrestricted.
Service Hours: Monday-Friday, 1-4:30 p.m. (except University holidays)
In Person: Room 20, BioEnterprise Building, 11000 Cedar Avenue, Cleveland OH
U.S. Mail: Reference Desk, University Archives, Case Western Reserve University, 20 BioEnterprise Building, 10900 Euclid Avenue, Cleveland, OH 44106-7229
What to expect in the reading room
The materials in the Archives are often fragile, always rare or unique, and usually irreplaceable. To make sure the records remain usable, careful handling is required.
On your first visit you will fill out a visitor registration form, providing your name, contact information, and a description of your project.
Materials will be brought to you in the reading room and they may be used only in the reading room. Eating, drinking, and smoking are prohibited in the reading room.
Computers, cell phones, and cameras
You are welcome to use computers during your visit. You are encouraged to make your own copies using your own cameras, phones, or tablets, but not scanners. We can make copies for you, but not usually during your visit.
Archivists can do limited research for those unable to visit the Archives. Requests are normally answered in the order in which they are received. Simple requests can usually be answered within a week. If you have a deadline, be sure to tell us. We will attempt to accommodate you, but cannot always meet short deadlines. The earlier you contact us, the more likely we can meet your deadline.
Tips for requesting research
Because we must limit the amount of time we spend on each request, we want to focus our efforts so that we are more likely to get you the information you need
We will need to know what aspects of the subject are of interest to you. For example
- Establishment - when was the Wittke Award established and who was involved?
- Award process – who is eligible, what criteria are used, who decides?
- Recipients – names, dates and departments?
Do you need comprehensive information or only representative examples?
Tell us what you already know
The background information you already have can give us useful clues to identify relevant sources so we can focus on what you need to know. It also tells us what not to look for.
When do you need the information?
Most people who need information intend to use it for some purpose. For example, someone writing an obituary about a Wittke Award winner probably needs a short phrase which summarizes the honor conferred by the award. Someone writing a dissertation on the relationship among honors, teaching load, and salary probably needs more complex information.
Ask us anyway
If you don't quite know where to start or if you're not sure what you need, if you need information about CWRU or its predecessors, do not hesitate to ask us.