Munday Library

Archives & Special Collections



The Archives and Special Collections at St. Edward’s University thrive on the materials which are donated by alumni, students, faculty, staff, and members of the public. These donations are welcomed and encouraged. The purpose of this policy is to clarify the complex reasons why donated materials may or may not be a good fit for the archives. However, no two donations are alike and no policy can cover all of the aspects that inform whether or not a donation can be accepted. This policy is meant to be the start of a series of conversations between potential donors and the Munday Library. Potential donors are strongly encouraged to speak with Library staff about their materials and ask any and all questions they may have.

To begin the donation process, email or call 512-428-1047.


The St. Edward’s University Munday Library Archives and Special Collections exist to collect, preserve, and provide access to the unique materials that document the history of the St. Edward’s University and its various associated institutions and activities. Additionally, it collects materials on Catholicism in Texas, relevant topics in Texas history, and other items that enhance the educational opportunities of the St. Edward’s community and serve the greater Austin area’s historical needs.

Scope of Materials:

The list below reflects the archives’ central mission, but is not meant to be exclusive. As the needs of St. Edward’s University evolve, new collecting areas in Archives and Special Collections may emerge. Each potential acquisition is reviewed on its own merits. Because supplies, staff, and space are limited, collecting is selective in all areas. The St. Edward’s University Munday Library Archives and Special Collections collects items in the following areas of interest:

  • Materials (in any format) that document the history of St. Edward’s University (and associated schools), its students, faculty, staff, and alumni.
  • The original research of St. Edward’s faculty and alumni to the extent that it has enduring academic value.
  • Unique materials that record the history of Catholicism in Texas.
  • Unique materials related to the history of Texas, with particular emphasis on city of Austin and the geographic areas adjacent to the University.


The Munday Library at St. Edward’s University welcomes the donation of materials that will enhance its collections. The acceptance of gifts is contingent upon the appropriateness of the gift to the Archives and Special Collections, donor restrictions, the availability of space, and the cost of preservation supplies. Because the cost of processing and conservation supplies is considerable, donors are encouraged to make a monetary contribution to cover this expense.

The Munday Library does not accept the gift of materials without the completion of a Donation Agreement form, and is only able to accept gifts with the approval of the Dean of Libraries. The mission of the Library is to share materials as widely as possible; for that reason, donors are asked to transfer any copyright they hold on the materials to St. Edward’s University, in addition to full physical control of the materials. Generally speaking, The Munday Library is unable to accept materials to which it cannot own full rights. The transfer of these rights is complete after the Donation Agreement is signed by both parties.

The Library does not accept materials on loan, nor does it accept materials that will never be made available to the public. The Library will consider restricting access to parts of a collection for reasonable periods of time only in the event that such restrictions are needed to protect the privacy of persons still alive. Other special conditions may be specified by the donor in the Donation Agreement, but the Munday Library may refuse any donation in which it deems the conditions of use to be overly restrictive.

The Munday Library reserves the right to accept or reject gifts, in whole or in part. The Library also reserves the right to dispose of unwanted portions of a gift when they do not meet the scope of materials collected. In these cases, the discarded items may be returned to the original donor, transferred to a more appropriate library/archive, or otherwise handled according to the deaccessioning policy of the Library. The disposal method of discarded materials will be agreed on by both parties in the Donation Agreement.

The Library also reserves the right to decline gifts for the following reasons:

  • Inability of the Library to provide suitable space, staffing, or supplies to preserve the materials or make the collection available to the public.
  • The collection contains materials that do not fit within the scope of the Archives or Special Collections.
  • The collection contains materials that can be found in other archives or libraries (ex. newspapers, books, court records, and other public documents). This include may include photocopies of materials in the possession of another archive or library.
  • The collection contains items irreparably damaged by insects or mold.
  • The collection contains materials in which the donor’s ownership is in question or is disputed.

Donors may examine the materials that they have donated, and, if so desired, can be given a copy of any inventories, finding aids, or other research materials produced by the Library about the donated materials.

Restrictions on Use of Materials:

Due to the often irreplaceable and delicate nature of the items, Archives and Special Collections materials may never leave the library. Patrons must make an appointment to visit the Munday Library and view these materials in the Tocker Reading Room. Additional rules for using Archives and Special Collections may apply. Though the Munday Library has a firm commitment to the freedom of information and strives to make all materials available for all patrons, some collections may include restrictions on their use. These restrictions are usually made at the request of the collection’s donor in order to protect the privacy of individuals or a business and typically last for a predetermined length of time.


Anyone with an interest in donating archival materials to the library should take the following steps:

  • Review this Acquisition Policy to see if the materials align with the stated interests of the Munday Library.
  • Gather all of the materials into one location. Remove any items that one wishes to keep.
  • Be sure of who has full legal right to donate the materials. When necessary, obtain paperwork to show show who has legal ownership of the items.
  • Contact the Archivist and Special Collections Librarian at the Munday Library to discuss the materials via or 512-428-1047.

If the Library feels that the materials have the potential to enhance the collection, arrangements will be made for library staff to view the items. In the event that the Library is interested in accepting the donation (a decision that depends on the size of the materials, their condition, and their alignment with the above policy), final approval must be given by the Dean of Libraries before the materials can be transferred. Once this approval is obtained, the Library and the donor will complete a Donation Agreement, and the materials will be transferred (legally and physically) to the Library. No gifts will be accepted without approval of the Dean of Libraries and a completed Donation Agreement.

Adopted September 2019

Revised October 2019