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Welcome to the Alden Room!

photo of the Alden Room in Milne Library, including seating, pretty wooden shelving, and tables.

Milne Library's Alden Room is the home of many treasures that document the history of the College and student life beginning with the College's foundation as the Oneonta Normal School in 1889.  The room is named in honor of Jessica Alden, the first librarian at the Oneonta Normal School.  Yearbooks, newspapers, and other student publications as well as photographs, scrapbooks, office and department documents, sorority pins and other memorabilia, and a biography file comprise the archives.  

In addition, there is an extensive lantern slide collection as well as numerous special book collections: New York State histories, Faculty Publications, Masters Theses, Early Textbooks, O'Mara Native American Collection, New York State Verse, Cornell-Gladstone-Hanlon-Kaufmann Collection, Popular Fiction, Private Press Publications, and Special Collections Miscellanies.

All of these materials are available for you to research or browse.  If you have any questions or are interested in learning more about a particular topic or collection, simply contact Heather Stalter or Sophia Donne, Special Collections Team co-leaders.

You can also learn more by checking out the Special Collections Guide.

Visiting the Alden Room

Many materials in the Archives and Special Collections are rare, fragile, or irreplaceable.  To ensure their protection and good condition for future generations, all visitors to the Alden Room are asked to follow these guidelines.

Visiting the Alden Room

  • The Alden Room is open to everyone during open hours (Mondays when classes are in session, from 1:00 - 5:00 pm) and by appointment
  • Visitors can sign the guest book
  • Food, drink, and gum must be left outside of the room
  • Items in the Alden Room do not circulate and must remain in the room
  • Yearbooks are available for browsing

Requesting Materials

  • If you are interested in looking at specific items or have a topic in mind, please contact Heather Stalter or Sophia Dunne in advance

Use of the Materials and Care in Handling

  • All items must be handled carefully
  • Before touching items, hands must be clean and dry, and free of lotion and hand sanitizer
  • If pulling a book off the shelf, never pull it out by the top of the spine; instead pull it by grasping the front and back covers
  • Notes can be taken in pencil or on a device, making sure not to lean on or mark materials
  • Pens, highlighters, and markers are not permitted
  • Documents must remain flat on a table
  • Use care when turning pages
  • Keep all other objects away from items, and make sure not to place books, pencils, or other objects in the items
  • Remove only one folder at a time from a box
  • Documents within a folder must be kept in the exact same order and facing the same direction as they were originally
  • For additional guidelines, see Handling Rare Books from U Texas, San Antonio Libraries 
  • If you're unsure, ask a librarian or student assistant for help!


  • Reproductions for personal or research purposes are available upon request
  • Visitors may use cell phones or personal cameras (no flash) to photograph materials