Policies, services, and fees

The Inglenook books in the Brethren Historical Library and Archives
Photo by Cheryl Brumbaugh-Cayford


Services and fees*

1. Hours
The Brethren Historical Library and Archives (BHLA) is open to the public, Monday through Friday, from 9:00 a.m. to noon and 1:00 to 4:00 p.m.  Those coming to BHLA should call in advance, since BHLA has only one employee and is closed when that person is out of town.  There is no charge for doing research at BHLA, except for the cost of photocopies and other types of reproductions.

2. Noncirculating collection
BHLA does not loan books or archival records.  This policy was established by the Brethren Historical Committee.  Because BHLA serves as the historical library for the denomination, it cannot take the chance of losing items which are irreplaceable. 

3. Reference requests
BHLA responds to reference requests (concerning Church of the Brethren beliefs and history) received by mail, phone, e-mail, or fax, provided the requests do not require extensive research.  Patrons needing to do in-depth research should plan to come onsite to use the collection.

4. Genealogical research
There is a charge of $25.00 per hour for time spent responding to genealogical requests.  The minimum payment is $12.50, with a maximum of two hours per request.  Please do not send payment in advance.  A bill will be sent on completion of the project.  Contact BHLA for additional information about its genealogical research policies.

5. Photocopies

1-50 copies from paper copies $ .15 each
51+ copies from paper copies $ .30 each
1-25 copies from microforms $ .50 each
26+ copies from microforms $1.00 each

There is a maximum of 100 photocopies per day.  At the discretion of the staff, photocopying of certain items may be denied due to the fragile condition of the original materials or copyright laws.

6. Obituary copies
Copies of obituaries are $2.00 each if the citation (name of periodical, issue, and page) are provided.  If no citation is provided, the cost is $4.00 each.  Obituaries have been published in Brethren periodicals since 1851.  Most of the obituaries in these periodicals, including all of the obituaries published in Gospel Messenger, have been indexed by BHLA.

7. Scans
Scans of documents (text) are $.50 per page (PDF format).  Scans of photos (tiff format) are $5.00 for up to 3 scans and $2.00 for each additional scan.

8. Photo reproductions (prints)
For each photograph ordered, a copy negative is necessary.  If the archives does not already have a copy negative, one must be made from the original print.  The cost of this copy negative will be added to the order.  The archives will retain the copy negative.  Since the making of copy negatives and prints cannot be done in-house, they must be taken to a local photo lab.  The bill will be determined by the photo lab charges plus a service charge.  The cost for copies of color prints, slides, etc. will be investigated on an order-by-order basis.  All photo reproduction orders will include a service charge equal to 10% of the cost of the order, with a minimum of $5.00.

9. Postage
Patrons are to reimburse BHLA for the actual cost of postage for each mailing. 

10. Fees for other services
Fees for reproducing videos, slides, cassette tapes, reel-to-reel tapes, architectural drawings, etc. will be investigated on request.  All such orders will include a service charge equal to 10% of the cost of the order, with a minimum of $5.00 per order.

11. Tours
BHLA will provide tours of its facilities for groups visiting the Church of the Brethren General Offices.  Unique items in the collection are highlighted on such tours.  Please call in advance to make arrangements for a tour.

*All of the above fees became effective January 1, 2010 and are subject to change without notice.