Academy Archives and Special Collections

While the Academy Library is constantly acquiring new books and resources for the use of its patrons, it also serves as a place to preserve and protect the past. It is in this capacity that the Academy Archives and Special Collections are most important.

Special Collections

The Special Collections of the Class of 1945 Library at Phillips Exeter Academy feature works from the 16th to 21st centuries and include such treasures as a Medieval illuminated manuscript and the explorer Roald Amundsen’s 1905 journal detailing his discovery of the Northwest Passage. One of the most valuable collections held by any secondary school library in the United States, Exeter’s collection of rare books and original manuscripts offers material of interest to literary scholars, historians, book collectors, and students working in a variety of fields. The Special Collections include more than 11,000 books, original manuscripts by well-known authors, letters, broadsides, maps, artworks and films. Housed in rooms honoring alumni donors Thomas Lamont ’16 and Corliss Lamont ’20, the Special Collections are found on the fourth floor of the Class of 1945 Library and in the Library’s vault, where the most valuable items are kept.

Academy Archives

Click here to request information from the Academy Archives.

The Academy Archives, located in the basement of the Academy Library, is the official repository for non-current Academy records in all formats. The primary mission of the Archives is to identify, arrange and describe, and preserve those records which document the history of the Academy and the activities of the faculty, staff, and students and to make them available for research purposes. Records collected by the Archives include: administrative files, correspondence, campus publications such as catalogs, viewbooks, the Exeter Bulletin (alumni/ae magazine), student publications such as The Exonian (school newspaper) and the Pean (student yearbook), records of student government and organizations, students' letters, diaries, scrapbooks and other memorabilia, and photographs, as well as videotapes and audiotapes.