' Rare Books & Special Collections // Hesburgh Libraries // University of Notre Dame

University of Notre Dame


Hesburgh Libraries

Rare Books & Special Collections

Physical Exhibits in Special Collections

The Department of Special Collections regularly presents thematic exhibits of materials from its holdings in the Special Collections Exhibit Room, 102 Hesburgh Library, and on our Web site. Please follow the links in the menu at left for more information about our exhibits and exhibition schedule.

Currently on Display

Graphic for the exhibit.

After Gutenberg: Print, Books, and Knowledge in Germany through the Long Sixteenth Century

August 24 - December 18, 2015

Explore innovations in the dissemination of knowledge in Germany during the long sixteenth century. From the marriage of text and image on the printed page to the use of censorship and propaganda to the manuals of advice and instruction, witness the dynamic intellectual life of Germans between 1450 and 1650.


Rare Books & Special Collections
102 Hesburgh Library,
at the west end of the 1st Floor Concourse

Open to the public:

9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday

Opening Reception:

September 11th, 4:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.

The exhibit is curated by Dr. Julie Tanaka (RBSC Curator and Western European History Librarian).

The exhibit coincides with a conference being hosted by Notre Dame. ​Beyond Tradition: Rethinking Early Modern Europe highlights the exciting new directions that teaching and research on Early Modern European subjects are taking. The conference will feature scholars and students presenting their current research, a workshop on using special collections materials, the exhibit opening, and will conclude with an interdisciplinary roundtable discussion about the new directions in early modern studies.

Exhibit and Conference information (PDF)

For information on other exhibits currently on display eslewhere in the University Libraries, please refer to the Libraries exhibits page.

Spotlight Exhibits

Recent Acquisitions — Photograph Albums of Travel to Cuba, ca. 1900

Photograph of the display.

August 2015

Rare Books and Special Collections recently acquired two photograph albums of Cuba: the Liebee Family Cuba Photo Album and the Gómez Souvenir Album (right). The two albums illustrate the manner in which late nineteenth-century travelers memorialized their journeys through photography.

Advances in photographic technology made the medium more feasible and affordable for travelers of even modest means. These advances coincided with faster, more reliable, and more extensive transportation networks that enabled Americans to travel beyond their immediate region for both business and pleasure. The highly publicized military defeat of Cuba’s colonial ruler (Spain) by the United States in 1898 stimulated a great deal of interest in the island and prompted the type of travel memorialized in the two albums on display this month.

This month's spotlight exhibit is curated by David Dressing, Latin American, Latino, and Iberian Studies Librarian.


For information about previous spotlight exhibits, please refer to the History of Spotlight Exhibits page.

Upcoming Exhibits

January 2016

Macbeth, Julius Caesar, Twelfth Night. These celebrated plays and 15 others by Shakespeare would probably have been lost to us today without the First Folio, the first collected edition of Shakespeare's plays. We have been selected as a host site for the Folger Shakespeare Library's national tour of the First Folio in 2016, so you'll have an opportunity to see this famous book up close.

Spring 2016

Centenary of the 1916 Easter Rising in Ireland

Suggest an Exhibit

Many of the exhibits presented by the Department of Special Collections are produced in collaboration with members of the Notre Dame teaching and research faculty and are scheduled to coincide with significant academic conferences at the University. If you have a suggestion for a future exhibit and/or would like to assist in producing one, please contact Special Collections at 631-0290 or by e-mail.