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West Virginia State Archives

Rules and Researcher Guidelines

Researchers are encouraged to visit and use the Archives and History Library. Patrons are directed to observe the following guidelines:
  1. All patrons must sign and complete the guest book in full at the entrance desk each day upon initial entry. All patrons must also complete a library registration form in full. Refer to Form #1, WVAH-01, “Library Registration Form West Virginia Archives and History.” Patrons will only have to complete the library registration form on one occasion, but may be asked periodically for updates to registration information.
  2. All researchers using specialized collections will complete a specialized collections use form. Refer to Form #2, WVAH-02, “Specialized Collections Use Form West Virginia Archives and History.”
  3. Patrons may bring only the following personal items into the library: pencils, legal-type pads, blank sheets of unbound paper, index cards and loose personal papers (for example: genealogy charts, notes, printouts); necessary medication and personal medical devices; laptop computer with power cord, mouse and memory stick or flash drive; silenced cell phones, pagers or similar devices; money, checkbooks, identification cards and monetary cards; and clear plastic bags to contain allowable items. Coats and other outerwear are permitted, but pockets must be empty. All materials are subject to inspection upon departure from library.
  4. Prohibited items include but are not limited to: all liquids, food, candy, gum, tobacco products, umbrellas, purses, waist packs, tote bags, backpacks, suitcases, computer bags and brief cases; opaque plastic and paper bags; notebooks of any type; pads with wire or plastic comb bindings; pens, mechanical pencils, colored pencils, markers, highlighters and/or marking devices; self-adhesive notes, tape and stickers; scissors, knives and box cutters; file boxes, file folders, envelopes and report covers; and personal reference books.
  5. Patrons will be provided with pencils, blank paper, bookmarks, one-page genealogy charts, tissues and clear plastic self-closing bags.
  6. Division of Culture and History lockers are available on a first-come, first-serve basis. Archives and History is not responsible for items placed in lockers.
  7. All persons and belongings are subject to inspection before departure.
  8. Use of any tobacco products, eating, and drinking are prohibited in all library and collections areas. Prohibition includes candy, gum and all liquids.
  9. Staff is available at the reference desk to assist patrons.
  10. Patrons are responsible for their personal property. Archives and History assumes no responsibility for lost or stolen personal belongings or property.
  11. Use of electronic or mechanized copying equipment by patrons is prohibited in all library and microfilm rooms. Such equipment includes but is not limited to cameras, cell phone cameras, photocopiers and scanning devices.
  12. Use of cellular phones or personal communication devices is prohibited. Phones that are on a silent setting or turned off may be brought into the library, but all calls must be answered and placed outside the library.
  13. Only pencils may be used by researchers. Use of pens, highlighters, and other writing and/or marking devices is prohibited.
  14. Patrons will not apply self-adhesive removable notes, tape, paper clips, staples, or similar objects to any items in the collections.
  15. Patrons may pull books, materials and microfilm in the library and microfilm storage rooms. Call slips, with all requested information printed legibly, must be submitted at the reference desk for materials not shelved in these rooms. Materials may be used in the library and microfilm reading rooms only and may not be removed. Patrons are not to reshelve any materials but are to return them to designated areas.
  16. Patrons are to limit the number of books at their work area to three (3) and the number of reels of microfilm to no more than two (2). Other restrictions apply for specialized collections.
  17. Arrangement of the materials is to be retained and all materials are to be treated with great care so as to avoid marking, folding, or damaging in any way.
  18. Patrons who find damaged materials should inform Archives and History staff immediately so that repair and preservation work can be initiated.
  19. Use of the microfilm readers, reader/printers and on-line public access computers is on a first-come, first-served basis with sign-up required. When other researchers are waiting to use a microfilm reader or reader/printer, a two-hour limit may be imposed. Use of on-line public access computers is limited to thirty minutes. Patrons are not permitted to use personal disks or other storage media on library computers.
  20. During the last one-half hour of operation, no materials will be pulled from the closed stacks or copies made by staff. During the last one-half hour of operation, the microfilm storage room will be closed.
  21. All photocopying will be done by staff.
  22. Some materials at Archives and History are protected by copyright and other restrictions. Archives and History will only photocopy materials within the provisions of “fair use” provided in copyright law of the United States (Title 17, U.S. Code). Archives and History reserves the right to refuse to accept a copying order if, in its judgment, fulfillment of the order would involve violation of copyright law. Patrons who copy materials at reader-printers or from the public-access computers in the library are responsible for determining any restrictions that may apply to those materials. Patrons also assume all responsibility for possible infringement of copyright and invasion of privacy or other rights that may arise in the use they make of the materials copied.
The above rules are from § 82-6-5.2 of the Archives and History Library Services and Fee Guidelines.

Use of Specialized Collections

  1. To provide quality access to the specialized collections, researchers should make an appointment with Archives and History staff at least one week in advance and provide information on research topic.
  2. To access the specialized collections, researchers must complete an application form, which will be kept on file by Archives and History. Refer to Form #2, WVAH-02, “Specialized Collections Use Form West Virginia Archives and History.”
  3. Conditions for the use of photographic copies. Refer to Form #3, WVAH-03, “Conditions for the Use of Photographic Copies West Virginia Archives and History,” and Form #5, WVAH-05, “Permission for Use of Photographs and Moving Images West Virginia Archives and History.”
  4. Conditions for the use of moving images footage. Refer to Form #4, WVAH-04, “Conditions for the Use of Moving Images Footage West Virginia Archives and History,” and Form #5, WVAH-05, “Permission for Use of Photographs and Moving Images West Virginia Archives and History.”
  5. When material from the specialized collections is used in a publication, broadcast, film, exhibition, website, etc., credit must be given as follows: “West Virginia State Archives.” When a specific collection name is provided by Archives and History, that name must also appear in the credit line.
  6. Researchers assume all responsibility for questions of copyright and invasion of privacy or other rights that may arise in the reproduction or use of materials from the specialized collections.
  7. Reproduction by others of photographic copies and moving images footage from the West Virginia State Archives is not permitted. Nor is it permitted to donate these materials, or other copies of specialized collections materials, to other archival institutions without the written permission of the West Virginia State Archives.
  8. Specialized collections materials displayed on the West Virginia Archives and History website are covered by the rules discussed in 5.3.c., 5.3.d, 5.3.e, 5.3.f, and 5.3.g.
The above rules are from § 82-6-5.3 of the Archives and History Library Services and Fee Guidelines.

Use of Archives and History Website Materials

  1. Materials on the Archives and History website are for research, teaching, and private study purposes only. For such purposes, except as provided in subsection 5.3, users may reproduce (print or download) single copies of materials from this website without prior permission, on the condition that proper attribution of the source is provided in all copies. Users may also make additional photocopies of materials that are not protected by copyright for teaching purposes without prior permission, on the condition that proper attribution of the source is provided in all copies.
  2. For copyrighted materials on the website that are owned by West Virginia Archives and History, such as West Virginia History, the making of multiple copies requires the written permission of the director of Archives and History.
  3. For other uses of materials from this website, such as printed or online publications, broadcast, film, exhibition, website, etc., advance written permission from West Virginia Archives and History is required.
  4. Permission to reprint articles from West Virginia Archives and History News is granted, provided: (1) The reprint is not used for commercial purposes, and (2) the following notice appears at the end of the reprinted material: “Previously published in West Virginia Archives and History News, [Volume and issue numbers], [Month, Year], a publication of the West Virginia Division of Culture and History.”
  5. Some materials on the Archives and History website are protected by copyright or other restrictions. Researchers assume all responsibility for questions of copyright and invasion of privacy or other rights that may arise in the reproduction or use of these materials.
The above rules are from § 82-6-5.4 of the Archives and History Library Services and Fee Guidelines.


West Virginia State Archives

West Virginia Archives and History