A multi-media presentation of images of the library and some of its treasures is available here: http://www.wisconsin-connections.com/NASHOTAH_HOUSE_LIBRARY.html .
The staff strives to make the Frances Donaldson Library not only efficient, but warm and friendly as well. After an initial orientation tour in which new seminarians meet the library staff and are introduced to the library's collections, staff members continue to work with each seminarian, providing library services tailored to individual needs.
The collections, approximately 117,000 printed volumes and 287 current periodical subscriptions, are primarily theological, with substantial holdings in church history, philosophy, and material supporting other areas of the seminary's curriculum. The print holdings of the library are supplemented by more than 40,000 carefully selected electronic books and electronic journals that are conveniently available through the library’s catalog and its journal databases.
Special collections have a number of interesting items, including the Underwood Prayer Book Collection and archival material relating to the history of Nashotah House and the Episcopal Church in Wisconsin. In support of the seminary's course offerings in the English choral tradition, a core collection of compact discs is available, emphasizing plainsong, polyphony, chant, madrigals, choral, and organ works. Video and DVD collections feature films relating to the Bible, church history, monasticism, Christian spirituality, and current issues in the church. The National Altar Guild Collection is a circulating collection integrated into the House's historically strong holdings in liturgy and cognate arts. The library also houses a children's room with a sizeable collection of children's books.
Within the building, access is provided to databases, electronic reference materials, and internet resources in a small computer lab and via wireless networking. The online catalog (HouseCat) and many other databases are accessible from the library’s “Resources” page. Currently enrolled seminarians, faculty, and staff may access all of the library's electronic resources remotely.
The building itself was constructed in 1910 and renovated and much enlarged in 1982. The older portion of the building is constructed in collegiate gothic style and includes a large upper-level reading room (pictured above), a main floor with staff workroom and offices, and the reference room. The lower level contains the current periodicals area, the computer lab, a snack room with kitchenette, and a seminar room. The newer portion of the building, known as the Brady addition, is gracefully joined to the old by a three-story atrium with skylights providing indirect, natural light. The library's general stacks are housed mostly in the Brady addition. The building is fully accessible to the disabled. See the library's Floor Plans to get a clearer picture of the building's layout.
All stack areas, except for special collections, are open. Large, utilitarian study carrels are available for all seminarians. The library is open to the general public from 8:30 a.m. to 4:20 p.m., Monday through Friday, except during holidays. Faculty and seminarians have access to the library twenty-four hours every day.
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