Copied From: The Hitchhikers Guide to The University of Georgia’s Libraries
By: Laura W. Carter
The University of Georgia Libraries (http://libs.uga.edu) is a goldmine for researchers. As the oldest state chartered university in the United States (1785), with a long, rich history, the University of Georgia (UGA) has been working to educate its students for several centuries.
The University of Georgia Libraries must have a large, deep, and broad collection to support the 170 undergraduate majors and academic programs, plus more than 120 other specialist, interdisciplinary, dual degree, certificate, and other graduate programs. Without the excellent staff at the University of Georgia Libraries, there would not be a great collection and few people would be able to use it. Past attendees at the Institute for Genealogy and Historical Research (IGHR) should find UGA Libraries staff as accommodating and helpful as at the Samford University Library.
IGHR attendees and faculty will most likely center their research in three different buildings: the Main Library on North Campus, the three special collections libraries in the Richard B. Russell Special Collections Building, and the Alexander Campbell King Law Library (also on North Campus).
The catalogs of the UGA Libraries (GIL) and the Law Library (GAVEL) are available online and can be searched freely.
While most of the collections described in this article must be used on-site, some of these materials may be available through Inter-library Loan (ILL).
The Main Library on North Campus supports most of the liberal arts curriculum of the University, including a number of graduate programs, and houses art, humanities, social sciences, business, government documents, media, music (books, scores, and periodicals), and newspaper collections. In addition, the Main Library is the headquarters for the Georgia Newspaper Project (http://www.libs.uga.edu/gnp/), located in the basement, and has microfilm of most Georgia newspapers with digital microfilm scanners.
The Map and Government Information Library, known as MAGIL (http://libs.uga.edu/magil/), is in the sub-basement of the Main Library.
The University of Georgia Libraries has made collecting government documents and maps a major part of their mission for more than 100 years.
The UGA Libraries is the regional depository for federal documents and is the official depository for documents published by the State of Georgia.
The Libraries also collects select international and United Nations documents.
MAGIL is home to one of the largest academic map collections in the country. The collection includes maps and atlases from all over the world, with a particular emphasis on the U.S. and the State of Georgia. Other resources specific to the State of Georgia include post-1900 city directories, aerial photography from the 1930s to the 1990s, and Sanborn Fire Insurance Maps.
MAGIL’s website (http://www.libs.uga.edu/magil) includes finding aids for these resources. It is important to check the MAGIL website for its operating hours since MAGIL is not open the same hours as the Main Library.
Because the UGA Libraries collection is so large, it is housed in multiple locations. Repository materials must be brought in to the Main Library or Science Library from their storage location for use.
Use the MAGIL website (http://libs.uga.edu/magil/collections) or the UGA library catalog GIL (http://gilfind.uga.edu) to locate materials in advance of a library visit to allow time for items to be retrieved from a remote location.
Many of the Reference resources are now in online databases allowing UGA students and faculty access at any time and from almost anywhere.
There are numerous databases containing historical newspapers (U.S. and foreign), legal databases, dissertations and theses, biographical dictionaries and encyclopedias, full-text digital books and much more that genealogical and historical researchers depend on. To name a few examples, the Readex U.S. Congressional Serial Set and American State Papers, JSTOR, Biography and Genealogy Master Index, LexisNexis Academic (which includes legal/law resources), and Ancestry Library Edition are of interest to genealogists.
A more comprehensive list of databases can be found at http://www.libs.uga.edu/research/.
Look in the lower left corner of the window to browse a list of database names, then click on the More icon to get complete information about the database and its bibliographical holdings.
All the workstations in the Main Library for the general public are time-limited to 90 minute sessions. Each person is restricted to two logins per day or a total of three hours. The same policy applies to the public computers in the Science Library which is close to the Georgia Center.
Most of these databases can be used from the hotel rooms at the Georgia Center through campus Wi-Fi, since the Center is on campus, but they are not available from any off-campus hotel rooms.
To use the campus-wide Wi-Fi, call campus computing upon arrival. The phone number and complete directions will be in the IGHR information packet.
Copying and printing is handled with a card purchased from machines in the library. The card cost is currently $1.00. Complete information about printing can be found at: https://libs.uga.edu/print.
Scanning is free except for large format scanning in MAGIL.
Another webpage that will prove helpful with the schematic of the library is: https://www.libs.uga.edu/researchguide/working/navigating/floor.html.
The fourth floor is going to be where many attendees and faculty will want to spend time browsing the shelves.
Besides the Main Library building, the Richard B. Russell Special Collections building (http://www.libs.uga.edu/scl/) is well worth a visit by IGHR attendees and faculty. It houses three special collections libraries, each of which has a different focus. The Hargrett Rare Books and Manuscripts Library focuses on Georgia history and culture and houses many items of genealogical interest, including pre-1900 Georgia city directories (http://libs.uga.edu/hargrett/index.shtml). The Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies (http://libs.uga.edu/russell/) has much information about the economy, industry, agriculture, social conditions, and daily life in the 20th century.
The Walter J. Brown Media Archives and Peabody Awards Collection (http://libs.uga.edu/media/index.html) contains more than 250,000 items in recording formats of all kinds dating from the 1920s to the present. It is the only public archive in Georgia devoted solely to the preservation of audiovisual materials.
The collection contains news film, home movies, educational films produced by the University of Georgia, collections of films from companies, folk music recorded from all over Georgia, the Foxfire collection (which recorded old-timey crafts, music, and skills from the north Georgia mountains), as well as nearly every Peabody.
Visitors must register to use the research rooms for the three special collections libraries in the Russell Building.
Registration can be done onsite, but it is easier to do from home, by going to http://www5.galib.uga.edu/scl/research/registration.html, choosing the Research tab, then Research Registration from the drop-down menu, and completing the online form. Be sure to make a note of the email address and password used to register. Also be prepared to show a photo ID when visiting the special collections libraries in the Russell Building.
Before visiting any of the special collections libraries, review the information at http://www.libs.uga.edu/scl/research/using.html to learn how to request material. The catalogs for each of the collections can be searched at:
Remember that materials can only be used onsite. Hargrett charges for high resolution scanning; PDFs are 25 cents.
The Alexander Campbell King Law Library(http://www.law.uga.edu/about-alexander-campbell-king-law-library/) is the library for the University of Georgia School of Law and is managed by the UGA School of Law. This library is not administratively under the UGA Libraries.
The LexisNexis Academic (LNA) database is available through GALILEO and includes cases, statutes, and regulations for the federal system and all states. It also has law review articles. The Law Library staff has created a guide to LNA that can be found at: http://libguides.law.uga.edu/ighr.