August Wilson sitting on steps.

Archives & Special Collections

Welcome to Archives & Special Collections (A&SC), one of the largest archives that documents Western Pennsylvania history. In our collections, you’ll find historic documents, photographs, maps, rare books, newspapers, audio and video recordings, and much more. Do you have questions or can’t find what you’re looking for? Please contact us so one of our expert staff members can help you.

  • Access to the reading room at Thomas Boulevard by Pitt or non-Pitt researchers requires an appointment to be made at least 48 hours in advance.  
  • Access to the reading room at Hillman Library is open to Pitt researchers. Non-Pitt researchers must make an appointment at least 48 hours in advance.  
  • Contact us to request an appointment, and one of our archivists will follow up with you to schedule your appointment.
  • Note that the number of researchers  will continue to be limited to maintain social distancing, and all must wear a self-provided mask.

Browse Our Digital Collections Browse Our Finding Aids

Explore our collections further!

John James Audubon's plate of 2 purple herons.

We’ve digitized thousands of records from our collections, and you can see them all here! Search our Audubon prints, get acquainted with the City Photographer Collection, or just peruse the collection guides for our materials.

Map of Fort Pitt and parts adjacent with both rivers from 1761.

Interested in more Pittsburgh history? We work in partnership with other organizations in the area, like the Heinz History Center, to bring you more content on our city. Search by institution, topic, or format to find exactly what you want.

Nearly 5,000 students assembled to form the Living Panther to show Pitt Spirit. April 1920

Want to know what the Cathedral of Learning looked like while under construction? Maybe find yourself in your college yearbook? Or learn what Pitt students were talking about in the 1920s? It’s all here for you, from digitized yearbooks to historic photographs to a full run of the Pitt News, and much more. Hail to Pitt!

Horror Studies - Expanding the Horror Canon

Horror Studies - Expanding the Horror Canon

Join us on Tuesday, October 5th – 7p.m. for a virtual conversation with acclaimed authors Hailey Piper and Eric LaRocca, whose works have emerged as among the most important and visible examples of LGBTQ+ horror texts of 2021. Our conversation will explore definitions of ‘queer horror’, the history of the subgenre, and the importance of including... more
Raising the Dead - Exploring George A. Romero’s Archive

Raising the Dead - Exploring George A. Romero’s Archive

Join us for a virtual talk with Dr. Adam Hart, Visiting Researcher with the University of Pittsburgh Library System (ULS), exploring the development of the iconic zombie classic using materials from the George A. Romero Archive.  Followed by a discussion with Romero scholar Dr. Tom Fallows of the University of Baltimore Global Campus.  Time for... more
First Editions of Twain, Hemingway Works Come to ULS!

First Editions of Twain, Hemingway Works Come to ULS!

Actor, bibliophile and philanthropist Richard E. Rauh (A&S ’62, ’64G) has donated his extraordinary collection of rare books and manuscripts valued at more than $1.4 million to the University of Pittsburgh Library System (ULS). The Rare Book Library of Richard E. Rauh will be housed in the Archives & Special Collections department of Hillman Library alongside nearly 100,000 other rare books, broadsides, pamphlets, sheet music and serials. For more... more
University of Pittsburgh Library System Acquires Additional Archives for its Horror Studies Collection

University of Pittsburgh Library System Acquires Additional Archives for its Horror Studies Collection

The University of Pittsburgh Library System (ULS) is pleased to announce several significant new acquisitions to its Horror Studies Collection.  First announced during an installment of the ULS Horror Studies Webinar Series, hosted in collaboration with Pitt’s Center for African American Poetry and Poetics (CAAPP), the ULS has acquired the papers of Linda D. Addison, the most decorated horror poet today with a total of six Bram Stoker literary awards. ... more
Bing Crosby with the Pittsburgh Pirates

ULS acquires Bing Crosby materials

The Bing Crosby Collection, which was amassed by Crosby fan Frontis Wiggins, was recently acquired by the University Library System’s Center for American Music, housed at the Stephen Foster Memorial. The Crosby collection, which is largely material held outside of the singer’s family, includes more than 3,000 albums and... more
Horror Studies - Women in Horror 3

Horror Studies - Women in Horror 3

Join us on Tuesday, April 13, 2021 at 7p.m. for a conversation with acclaimed horror authors Jewelle Gomez and Michelle Lane. The conversation will explore expanding traditional horror conventions to include marginalized communities, the intersections of inspiration and mentorship, and revisiting characters through sequels. Jewelle Gomez is an author, poet, playwright, and essayist whose work... more
Horror Studies - Women in Horror

Horror Studies - Women in Horror 2

Join us on Tuesday, March 16, 2021 at 7p.m. for a reading and conversation with acclaimed horror poet Linda D. Addison. The conversation will focus on her biography and path to success, her role as a mentor, her approach to horror and poetics and the intersection of content and style, and feature a reading and discussion of her poetry

Check out our Horror Studies Blog!

University of Pittsburgh Library System - Horror Studies

View our blog and sign up for our monthly newsletter featuring Horror Collection updates, Romero news, horror events, and more!

Take a virtual tour of our new space!

Archives & Special Collections Virtual Tours

Archives & Special Collections resides in a state-of-the-art home on Hillman Library’s renovated third floor. It contains significant physical and digital exhibition space, an expansive reading room, a large classroom, and, the Text & conText Lab, a partnership between the ULS and the Center for Creativity, that allows for the exploration of text in all its forms.

Visit in person during library open hours or take a virtual tour!

Contact Us

Send us an email
Archives & Special Collections (A&SC) - Who We Are

A&SC at Hillman Library
320 Hillman Library
University of Pittsburgh
3960 Forbes Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15260
412-648-8190

A&SC at the Archives Service Center
7500 Thomas Boulevard
Pittsburgh, PA 15208
412-648-3232

Archives & Special Collections Facebook Archives and Manuscripts Tumblr Archives Instagram Rare Books Tumblr Archives Twitter

Spotlight on…

Vernell Lillie and Rob Penney

We are pleased to announce the acquisition of the papers of Rob Penny, noted Pitt professor, activist, playwright, and poet!


The banner features an image from the August Wilson Archive.