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Department of Special Collections



The Department of Special Collections in the Connelly Library houses a diverse range of materials, from 15th century illuminated devotionals to subject collections treating contemporary social issues. Bodies of work include literature, music, films, art, archival material and ephemera. Our collections explore a variety of themes in aural, narrative and illustrative form. Special Collections maintains a focus on acquiring, cataloging and housing unique material that is tied to undergraduate pedagogy and is freely available to researchers. We are a proud member of the Philadelphia Area Consortium of Special Collections Libraries.

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Collection Highlights

Susan Dunleavy Collection of Biblical Literature Online

View rare bibles and prayer books from the Library's collection online through our partnership with Villanova.

Villanova Digital Library

Vietnam Generation Online

Published between 1989 and 1996, Vietnam Generation served as a premier source of essays, artwork, poetry and other materials for the field of Vietnam War studies.

Vietnam Generation cover

Devotion: An Iconography of the Life of Jesus

This exhibition presents a study of illustrations from the Connelly Library’s collection of rare Bibles and prayer books.

Philadelphia in the Civil War

This exhibition features historic images of the sites and citizens of Philadelphia during the period of the Civil War, with specific focus on the individuals who lived on the land where La Salle University now stands.

Jane Irish: War Is Not What You Think

Irish has been drawing visual inspiration and historical research contexts the Imaginative Representations of the Vietnam War Collection for the past 10 years.