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Welcome to the Walter M. Bortz III Library: Collections


The library holds over 250,000 volumes in the General, Reference, and Periodical Collections. The general circulating collection is shelved by Library of Congress call number on the third floor stack areas. Developed to support the College's curriculum, the strengths of the collection include American history and English literature.

Reference Collection

The Reference Collection -- encyclopedias, dictionaries, bibliographies, handbooks, atlases, and similar materials used within the library -- is located on the second floor. Print and online indexes to periodicals, newspapers, and government documents are available. Please ask for assistance.

Periodicals and Newspapers

The library subscribes to approximately 200 current print periodical titles in many disciplines. In addition, several thousand online periodical titles are included in the library's online catalog. An electronic journal finder is available for searching these full-text e-journals. The most recent issues of magazines, journals, and newspapers are placed on shelves on the lower level of the second floor. Bound periodicals are shelved alphabetically by title on the first floor. Back files of selected newspapers and journals are available on microfilm in the Microformats Room on the second floor.

Academic Search Complete, Project Muse, JSTOR, and other online resources provide access to full text periodicals.

The titles of all of the Library's periodical and newspaper holdings are included in the online catalog.

Children's Collection

The Children's Collection is maintained primarily for community use. It is located on the lower level of the second floor at the end of the current periodicals area. Most, but not all, of the collection is entered into the online catalog.

Special Collections

  • Hampden-Sydney Collection: Beginning in 2012 it will be limited to works of HSC faculty, alumni, staff, and others closely associated with the college. Items are housed in the Hampden-Sydney Room on the 4th floor except for exceptionally valuable books that are shelved in the vault. Access is by request at the circulation desk.
  • Archives: Created in 2012, the Archives will be a working collection of items related to Hampden-Sydney College history or the papers of writers closely associated with the college. The College Archive Room is on the 4th floor, and will house materials not determined to be irreplaceable. Rare and unique archive materials, such as the original Board of Trustees Minutes, will be stored in the vault. Access is by request at the circulation desk.
  • UPLS: The UPLS Collection consists of the books owned by the debate societies and donated to Hampden-Sydney College in the 19th century. UPLS books are housed in open stacks on the 4th floor, but they do not circulate. Rare and valuable books from this collection are shelved in the vault, and can be accessed by request at the circulation desk.
  • Rare Books: This non-circulating collection is made up of rare and valuable books other than those in the Archives, Hampden-Sydney Collection or UPLS Collection. It is primarily shelved in the vault, with some items also housed in the Cabell Room. Access is by request at the circulation desk.

Government Documents Collection

Documents published by the United States government and by the state of Virginia are located on the fourth floor. Included in this collection are a wide variety of books and pamphlets about government, environment, history, foreign relations, business, population, and many other topics. To find titles in U.S. documents, consult the online Catalog of U.S. Government Publications, or ask for assistance. Useful websites include FDsys, the Government Printing Office Portal, and, the U.S. Government's Official Web Portal.

Microforms Collection

Most microform (microfilm and microfiche) materials are located in storage on the first floor. Assorted periodicals and newspapers, as well as a small collection of government documents, are available in microform. Some film, including The Farmville Herald and Hampden-Sydney Tiger, and a microfilm reader/printer is available on the main floor. Please ask for assistance at the Circulation Desk.

Video, Audio, Slide, and Software Collections

An extensive collection of sound recordings (audio compact discs) and DVDs are located on the second floor. Additional resources including VHS tapes, slides, and software, should be requested in the FTC. Resources may be checked out for five days. All media resources are included in the library's online catalog. Limit your search to the location "Fuqua" to eliminate print resources.

Online Resources

Click here to view a list of the library's Online Resource subscriptions. Access to the library's Online Resources is restricted to Hampden-Sydney College Users only.

Special Collections at the Bortz Library

Special Collections include the Rare Books Collection and the Hampden-Sydney Collection. Rare Books are often items that are considered scarce because of age and condition or valuable signatures. The Hampden-Sydney Collection includes books and a small number of manuscripts that are associated with the College--faculty members, alumni, and history. Rare books are kept in a storage vault on the first floor. The H-SC Collection and the UPLS Collections are shelved on the fourth floor. Most of the items, other than manuscripts, are included in the online catalog. Ask a library staff member for assistance with finding materials and retrieving materials from these collections. Patrons using materials from the library's Special Collections will need to fill out the Rare Books & Special Collections Registration and Request Form.

Gift Policy

In addition to monetary gifts the library welcomes gifts-in-kind in a variety of formats, including books, archival materials, manuscripts, media items such as DVDs, and art objects. Gifts are subject to the same policies and procedures as purchased items, and the library retains the right to accept or decline any gift. In general, gifts are accepted when they support the educational and research needs of the students and faculty, enhance the library environment, or build upon existing Bortz Library collection strengths. The Director of the Library will co-ordinate with the Director and Curator of the Atkinson Museum in determining the appropriate disposition of gifts.

Whenever possible, gifts are previewed for suitability before being accepted. The Director of the Library will collaborate with the Office of Institutional Advancement on the solicitation and acceptance of gifts. At the time of donation, the donor will be asked to complete and sign a gift information form transferring ownership and acknowledging the library’s role and rights in the disposition of the gifts. Printed copies of the form are available at the circulation desk. Inquiries concerning gifts should be communicated to the Director prior to the actual transport of materials to the Bortz Library. It is also the responsibility of the donor to provide a list of the items donated. Once a gift has been accepted it becomes the property of the Library and may be added to the collection, sold or discarded as deemed appropriate by the Library Director. If the Director intends to sell or discard gifts, he or she will co-ordinate such disposition with the Office of Institutional Advancement and/or the Business Office.

Gifts may qualify as legitimate deductions for tax purposes. However, the College is considered to be an interested party, and we cannot provide or pay for appraisals. Donors are responsible for any appraisal expenses and must comply with all IRS regulations in force before delivery of gifts or donations. The acceptance of a gift which has been appraised by the donor or a third party in no way implies endorsement of the appraisal by the library.

Gifts are acknowledged by letter and also by inclusion of a bookplate or other label when appropriate. If the donation is to be used for tax purposes the donor should keep a record of the gift for documentation.

October 2011

Gift Books Donation Form