Becker Library Archives & Rare Books Division

Hours: Monday - Friday, 9:00 am - 5:00 pm or by appointment

Contact Archives & Rare Books at (314) 362-4236 or

Room 702, Becker Library, 660 S. Euclid Ave., Campus Box 8132, St. Louis, MO 63110

WashU Libraries Book Club

4:00 pm - 5:30 pm

Annual Display of Rare Anatomical Texts

1:00 pm - 4:00 pm

Archives & Rare Books Posts

Obtaining an Article Before the Internet: Reprint Requests

Back in the days before the Internet, how did authors obtain copies of journal articles if they did not hold a subscription to the journal? One common way to request a copy of an article was to send the corresponding author of the article a postcard or a letter requesting a reprint of the article.  [Read more]

Franz Joseph Gall and the Origins of Phrenology

The following is a guest post from Stanley Finger, professor emeritus in the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences at Washington University. Finger earned his doctorate from Indiana University and has been on the faculty of Washington University in St. Louis since that time. He is also currently affiliated with the school’s History of Medicine  [Read more]

Thomas Jefferson’s Lenses

The Becker Archives holds a letter written by President Thomas Jefferson. This handwritten letter concerning Jefferson’s spectacles was given to Dr. Eugene Opie, dean of Washington University School of Medicine, in 1915. The letter was generously donated by William K. Bixby, was a frequent benefactor and long-time supporter of Washington University. Jefferson’s letter, dated Dec.  [Read more]