A student looks through rows of books at the library.

The Ball State University Libraries’ Archives and Special Collections preserves and provides access to over 1.5 million rare and unique archival materials of enduring research value. Our collections are accessible to all researchers and the general public.

  • Beginning Monday, August 3, the Archives and Special Collections is open by appointment only to the general public (including Ball State University students, staff, faculty, and emeriti). Research visits should be scheduled 24 to 48 hours in advance. 
  • Reading room/public space capacity has been reduced in accordance with physical distancing best practices.
  • A mask must be worn during visits to the Libraries.

For more information about access to resources, provided services, and visits please contact Archives and Special Collections staff.

Ball State University Archives

Records that document the history of the University, including archival materials from students, faculty, administration, departments, research offices, and alumni.

Document your Story: COVID-19 Pandemic Project Archive

Community archive documenting the COVID-19 pandemic. A collaborative project between Ball State University Libraries Archives and Special Collections, the Everyday Life in Middletown Project, and the Muncie Public Library.

Stoeckel Archives of Local History

Documents the history of Muncie and Delaware County, Indiana and includes records of business and industry, churches, clubs and organizations, education, genealogy, government, personal and family papers, photographs, and oral histories.

Drawings and Documents Archive

Over 120,000 original architectural drawings, landscape plans, blueprints, photographs, models, and building remnants that tell the stories of Indiana’s sites and structures.

Middletown Studies Collection

Research materials on Muncie as Middletown. Records collected fall into two categories: Records of Middletown Research, which consist of documentation generated by various studies and projects on Middletown: and collections on Muncie in the Stoeckel Archives of Local History.

Special Collections

Special Collections includes special formats, first editions, fine printing and bindings, and other rare published works. This includes unique research topics includes the John Steinbeck Collection, the papers of Congressman Philip Sharp, and the Frank A. Bracken Civil War Collection.


Archives and Special Collections’ physical collections in Bracken Library may be used in the Archives reading room (BL 210), which provides space for quiet and collaborative study as well as desktop computers for online searching. The reading room also contains scanners for public use free of charge.

Archives and Special Collections’ physical collections in the Drawings and Documents Archive may be used in the Drawings and Documents Archive reading room (AB 120).

The Schwartz Digital Complex also serves as a space to host instructional sessions or programming events associated with Archives and Special Collections.