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Archives and Special Collections at Southeastern: Our Services

This guide is designed to introduce researchers to Archives and Special Collections at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary.

Our Services

The Archives and Special Collections in the Library at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary procures and preserves unique materials documenting the past so that we can provide access to researchers. The materials in our collection are here to be used and our staff is dedicated to connecting patrons with with primary source materials that will enlighten their understanding of the past and equip them to more effectively serve the Church.

Here are the primary ways we seek to serve you in your studies at Southeastern. Please contact us if we can help out in any other way.

Reference and Research Support

Our archives staff is ready to assist you with your research. We can support your onsite research by discussing your topic and helping you focus in on primary sources in our collections that are pertinent to your research. We can also assist remote researchers and distance learners by conducting a reasonable amount of research in our holdings to determine if we have sources that answer questions you are exploring. You can contact our staff for reference assistance by email at, by phone at 919-761-2329, or by stopping by the reading room on the second floor of the library.

Submit a Remote Research Request

Duplication and Digitization

Our archives staff can support the research of distance students and remote researchers by making a reasonable number of photocopies, scans, or digital copies from materials in our holdings. In some cases we can provide duplication services free of charge, but in many cases the extent of the request requires that we charge fees to offset the cost of materials and staff time. There are rare instances in which copies cannot be made due to the fragile nature of the original materials.Please consult our Duplication Policy for details.

Submit a Duplication Request

Classroom Instruction and Workshops

Our archivists are available to provide instruction sessions that introduce students to archival resources, develop their primary source research skills, and encourage them to explore archival resources that can better equip them to serve the Church and fulfill the Great Commission as pastors, missionaries, scholars, and church members. Our instruction sessions can be tailored to the specific interests and needs of your students or we can provide a general overview of our collections and the research process. Whenever possible, our staff will put rare books and unique archival resources from our collections into the hands of your students so they can begin their journey into archival research as we teach. While we generally focus our instruction on College at Southeastern and SEBTS classes, we are happy to work with churches, community groups, and school groups of varying ages and abilities who have an interest in archives.

Examples of the types of instruction sessions our staff can provide include the following.

Spark Session

A Spark Session is a short, 15 minute presentation focused on a single archival resource that is designed to open student's eyes to the possibilities of primary source research in archives and "spark" their interest in further study. Spark Sessions are modeled after the TED talk format and are ideal for groups that are new to the research process and have limited classroom time.

Treasures of the Archives Session

A Treasures of the Archives Session is a 30-45 minute overview that will put rare books and unique archival resources into the hands of your students and introduce them to the resources and services available through the Archives at Southeastern. Treasures of the Archives Sessions are great for any group that wants to see the breadth of what is available in our archives and be equipped with some basic tools to discover more.

Topical Session

A Topical Session is a 45-60 minute presentation that focuses specifically on equipping students to better understand the primary sources that are available at SEBTS, in other local archives, and online for a specific topic or limited set of topics that they will be covering in class. Topical Sessions are ideal for classes that have research projects requiring or encouraging the use of primary sources.

Online Primary Sources and Digital Collections Session

An Online Primary Sources and Digital Collections session is a 45-60 minute presentation focused exclusively on archival resources that are available online through Library at Southeastern subscription databases, SEBTS digital collections, and the digital collections that are made available through other institutions and research universities. Online Primary Sources and Digital Collections sessions are ideal for hybrid classes and distance learners.

Archival Research Process Session

An Archival Research Process session is a 60-90 minutes presentation that delves deeply into the use of discovery tools to find relevant primary sources and equips students to conduct productive research in archives. Archival Research Process Sessions are ideal for PhD students, Dmin students, or upper level Masters students considering doctoral studies.

Please complete the form linked below or contact Jonathan Lawler, Archivist and Digital Collections Manager, at or 919-761-2220 to talk about planning an archives instruction session for your class, church, or community group.

Submit an Instruction Session Request