Archives/Special Collections

University History & Rare Books

Books and other materials documenting the history of John Brown University and the life and ministry of the university's founder, John E. Brown, are held in the university archives in the Alumni Welcome Center, 1635 Holly Place

Some books that are of historical interest but not directly connected to the archives' mission are held on the Special Collection section of the library on the second floor, next to the smart board room. These materials must be used in the library; they cannot be checked out. 


ELECTRONIC AUDIOBOOKS: JBU Library has a small collection of electronic audiobooks that can be checked out and downloaded using an app on your iOS or Android mobile device. You can view the audiobook listings at EBSCOhost Audiobooks. A Quick Start Guide and User Guide are available. Electronic audiobooks may be checked out for up to seven days.

AUDIOCASSETTES AND CDS: JBU Library does not actively collect audiobooks on tape or CD, but it has a small collection of audio recordings available for check out. Most of these are on cassettes rather than CDs. Audio cassettes and CDs can be checked out for 3 days.

Oversize Books/Pamphlets

OVERSIZED BOOKS - Books that are too large to fit on the shelves with the main collection of books are identified in the catalog as Oversize, Reference Oversize, or Reference Atlas. These are shelved behind the research help desk on the first floor. Oversized books that are classified as reference books must be used in the library.

PAMPHLETS - Small pamphlets and books are identified in the catalog as Pamphlets. These are shelved next to the oversized books, behind the help desk on the first floor. Pamphlets can be checked out on the same terms as other books.

Film Library

The JBU Film Library includes feature films from The American Film Institute's Top 100 Films, Academy Award-winning Best Picture films, and Spiritually Significant Films. Inclusion in the Film Library does not imply JBU's endorsement of a film.

Films displayed behind the research help desk may be check out by students for 2 days and by faculty and staff for 7 days (no renewals). 

DVDs and Videos that are more instructional/academic in nature are kept behind the circulation desk. They are available for in-library use or can be checked out by faculty members.

To check current availability of a specific title, look in the JBU catalog.

Game Library

The table game collection at the JBU library is available for check out by JBU students, faculty, or staff. Games may be checked out for 2 days, limit 2 at a time. 

Liberty Fund Books

The Liberty Fund Collection comprises classic works about politics, law, philosophy, and economics. Books labeled in the catalog as Liberty Fund Books are shelved on the second floor, along the south wall (next to the smart board room). 

Romig Room

The Romig Room on the second floor of the library features K-12 curriculum and books for children and teenagers. It is named in honor of Dr. Linda Romig, JBU professor of education from 1985-2007, who donated the core of the collection to give education students access to classic and contemporary books for children and adolescents. Non-fiction books in the juvenile collection follow the Dewey Decimal Classification system instead of Library of Congress, in keeping with the practice of most school and public libraries. 

Oliver Room

The Gary and Carrie Oliver Healthy Relationship Resource Room is dedicated to the memory of Carrie Oliver (1959-2007) and contains books and other resources related to supporting healthy relationships. The Oliver Room is located on the second floor of the library. Its materials can be checked out like other main collection books. 

The Oliver Room can be reserved for individual or small group use. Talk to the circulation desk for details. Please be aware that because the Oliver Room houses circulating materials, library staff or users may need to briefly enter the room during your reservation time in order to retrieve materials. If you need uninterrupted use of a room, consider reserving one of our other individual or group study rooms. Library rooms are available on a first-come, first-served basis if not reserved. 


ELECTRONIC PERIODICALS: The great majority of periodical literature offered by the JBU Library is now available in electronic form.  Use Full-Text Journal Titles to browse journals by discipline or to find out whether JBU provides full-text access to a specific journal, magazine, or newspaper. You can search for articles from a variety of publications by searching in the JBU Library OneSearch or in a subject-specific database appropriate for your field of study.

CURRENT PERIODICALS: Periodicals currently received in print by JBU Library are held on the first floor of the library in the reading area behind the research help desk. The current volume is held in the current periodical browsing area. It usually includes issues published in the current calendar year, but for some magazines it goes back a little farther. Print periodicals must be used in the library. (Faculty members who need to borrow print periodicals should contact the periodicals coordinator.)

BACK ISSUE PERIODICALS: Back issues of print periodicals held by JBU are kept upstairs. Most of the back file periodicals kept by JBU have their articles indexed in one or more index that you can use to locate specific articles that are relevant to your research. The Full-Text Journal Titles list indicates which titles are kept in print and what date ranges are available. Print periodicals must be used in the library.

Back issues of newspapers are retained for one year. If you want to look at a physical copy from within the past year of a newspaper received by JBU Library, inquire at the circulation desk. If you need articles from more than a year ago, use Full-Text Journal Titles to see what electronic access is available or submit a request through interlibrary loan.

MICROFICHE: A small number of back issue periodical titles are held in microfiche format: small sheets of film with miniaturized images of the pages of the magazine or newspaper that can be read using a microfilm machine. If the Full-Text Journal Titles listing indicates that the periodical you seek is available as microfiche, ask a research librarian for assistance.

Reserves & References

RESERVES: If your instructor tells you that a book is on reserve at the library, or if you find the word Reserve under "Shelf Location" in the library catalog, those books can be found at the circulation desk. They can be used for three hours at a time, in the library only. You must check out reserve items to use them, even though you cannot remove them from the library. You can check out up to three at a time.

To request a book from the reserve shelf, ask for it by the name of the instructor and the title of the book.

Required textbooks for non-elective core curriculum courses are also available on reserve. Typically, other assigned textbooks will not be available in the library unless your instructor has provided us with a copy. 

REFERENCE: The Reference collection comprises encyclopedias, dictionaries, handbooks, and other books that give an overview of an area of study or let a user look up particular terms or ideas. Ask for help in locating a particular reference book. Reference books cannot be checked out.