University Collection (Special Collections)
The University of Southampton has its origins in the Hartley Institution, founded in 1862 from the bequest of a local merchant, Henry Robinson Hartley. Originally accommodated in a building on Southampton's High Street, the Hartley University College (as it had become), moved to the current Highfield site in the years either side of the First World War. In 1952 the University received its Royal Charter and became an independent University, having at that time around 1,000 students. Over the last sixty years this number has increased to 17,000 undergraduate and 7,000 postgraduate students, and the University has expanded on to five campuses, which accommodate its eight Faculties.
University Collection includes publications by and about the University and its predecessors, the Hartley Institution, Hartley University College and the University College of Southampton. There are publications on the controversy surrounding the original Hartley Bequest, official publications such as calendars, annual reports, newsletters and exam papers, staff publications e.g. Viewpoint and some examples of early student publications e.g. Southampton University College Magazine 1914-1928. The photographic collection includes photos of people associated with the institution and of the buildings of the original Hartley Institution and the site at Highfield.
There is also a separate University Archives Collection, which is described on the Guide Database.
Approximately 2,000 thousand books, pamphlets, periodicals and ephemera. Approximately 600 photographs.
Access and arrangement of stock
The University Collection is part of the Special Collections Division on level 4 of the Hartley Library, which is on the Highfield Campus.
Items with the call number prefix Univ. Coll. are shelved in the Special Collections open access area and can be used whenever the Hartley Library is open. The books and periodicals have call numbers LF 780 - LF 789 and are shelved in one sequence.
Items with the call number prefix Rare Books Univ. Coll. and all the illustrations are fetched for use in the Archives and Rare Books Search Room, which is open Monday - Friday 09.30-17.00. Appointments are not normally needed, but you will need to show a form of ID on arrival at the Library and on entering the Search Room. Material cannot be produced without prior arrangement between 12.00 and 13.00.
You can request material:
- By phoning the Search Room on 023 8059 2721 or ext. 22721
- By emailing email@example.com
- By visiting the Search Room and completing a request slip
The books are listed in the Hartley Library card catalogue, which is on level 3 and post-1980 acquisitions are included in WebCat, the online catalogue. These are indicated by the call number prefix and location Univ. Coll. WebCat Help shows the most effective ways to search the catalogue. For basic searches use a subject term or an author's surname and a few words from a title as a keyword search. For a more detailed search or to limit a search by date use the Advanced Searches options. You can also restrict searches to University Collection by using the location option.
The illustrations are listed in the printed Local Illustrations Index, which is shelved next to the WebCats in Special collections open access area.
Most of the material is reference only. In the Special Collections open access area there are second copies of some titles and if you have a University ID/Library card these can usually be borrowed on Long loan. You can borrow books at the Loans Desk on level 2 or at the self-issue units on levels 2 and 3.
The nearest photocopiers are behind the main staircase on level 4 and the charges are 5p per A4 sheet and 10p for A3. If you are not a member of the University, you will need to go to the Photocopying area on level 2 to create a 'Guest Account' and then add credit to this account by using the Money Loaders, also on level 2. The loaders take 50p, £1 and £2 coins, notes and debit/credit cards. For more information see the iSolutions guide to the University Copying Service