Sacramento Room Policies

Sacramento Room Access Policy

Rules for Use of the Collections
Visitors are required to place personal belongings (except for eyeglasses, notebooks, and pencils) in a locker. Coats should be hung in area provided. Pens are prohibited. Staff may inspect briefcases, handbags, parcels, notebooks, books, and other personal property before they are removed from the room (California Penal Code Section 490.5).

Items in this collection are often fragile and must be handled with extreme care. They should be placed flat on a table while in use, not held in the hands. Materials may not be clipped, refolded, traced, or marked in any way. Handle all items, including photographs, by the edges. Artificial light and flash may not be used to photograph the room or materials in the room.

Secured materials must be returned to the service desk 15 minutes before the Library closes.
Smoking, food, and drink are prohibited in the Sacramento Room.
Materials are to be reshelved by staff only.

Services Available
  • Assistance in locating materials and obtaining materials from the vault.
  • Photocopying by staff.
  • Magnifying glasses, pencils, and paper.

  • Photocopying depends upon the size and condition of materials. Some materials are too fragile to place in a copier.
  • Materials may be photocopied only by Library staff.

To purchase digital scans or print reproductions of items in the Sacramento Room, please complete and print the order form and send with payment to the address indicated on the form.


Sacramento Room Collection Policy

The Sacramento Room collection management policy is supplemental to the general library collection management policy.

I. Mission
The Sacramento Room is dedicated to promoting an appreciation and understanding of the history of Sacramento by collecting, preserving, and providing access to special collections relating to the diverse history of the area.

II. Collecting Areas
The Sacramento Room collects materials in a variety of formats covering the history of the Sacramento area.

Collected: Books, pamphlets, photographs, scrapbooks, yearbooks, maps, videos, audio recordings, ephemera and other printed material.

Not collected: Artifacts or other objects, artwork, digital records, records of local or state government, or genealogical material.
The following collections are represented in the Special Collections of the Sacramento Public Library:
Collection - Collecting Level*
  • Sacramento Collection (SAC) - Research Level
  • Sacramento Area Authors Collection (SAA) - Initial Study Level
  • Sacramento Musicians and Songwriters Collection (SMS) - Initial Study Level
  • California Collection (CAL) - Initial Study Level
  • Printing and Book Arts Collection (BAC) - Initial Study Level
  • Sacramento Public Library History Collection (SPL)
  • Special Collection (SPE)

*Collecting levels are based on those defined in the ALA Guidelines for the Formulation of Collection Development Policies (see Appendix)

Sacramento Collection (SAC)
A comprehensive collection of materials documenting the natural, economic, political, social, religious and cultural history of the Sacramento area.

The Sacramento area encompasses the geographic region served by the Sacramento Public Library. This collection includes fiction and non-fiction books, periodicals, bibliographies, theses, maps, pamphlets, yearbooks, city directories, CDs, DVDs, microforms, photographs, postcards, and representative examples of ephemeral material. Manuscript material is collected to a limited degree. Books and other materials published in Sacramento which do not contain information about Sacramento are not included.

Sacramento Area Authors Collection (SAA)
A representative collection of published works and supporting material written by Sacramento-area authors.

Authors must have resided in Sacramento County and be closely associated with the area, as evidenced by author biographies and interviews. Works must be considered to be of enduring value and published in print. Monographs and collections of poetry must be published by a known publishing house, local press or respected vanity press. Notable stage plays and screenplays are also collected. Textbooks and technical works are not collected. Supporting material can include research files, clippings, biographical sketches, photographs, and related correspondence. Not all Sacramento authors can be represented in this collection, nor can all of the works of prolific authors be included. Works will be selected for inclusion based on the Sacramento Public Library’s general selection criteria.

Sacramento Musicians and Songwriters Collection (SMS)
A representative collection of audio recordings, sheet music and supporting material by Sacramento-area musicians and songwriters.

Musicians or songwriters must have resided in Sacramento County and be closely associated with the area, as evidenced by biographies and interviews. Recordings or sheet music must be considered to be of enduring value and published by well-regarded major or independent labels or by local music publishers. Recordings are not accepted where the producer, director, arranger or individual performer is identified with Sacramento, but the recorded group or individual is not. Sheet music will be accepted where the writer of the music or lyrics is closely associated with Sacramento. Non-musical audio recordings (speeches, discussions, performances, oral histories, etc.) are not accepted for this collection. Music recorded in the Sacramento area by non-Sacramento musicians will not be collected.

Vinyl albums, CDs, DVD-Audio discs and cassette tapes are collected. Phonograph cylinders, reel-to-reel tapes and eight-track tapes are not collected.

California Collection (CAL)
A representative collection covering the history of the state of California with more comprehensive coverage of Northern California.

This collection can include histories of neighboring states and the West to the extent that they have a significant relation to California history. Works of fiction written about California will be collected to a very limited degree. The purpose of this collection is to provide researchers with a general history of California and the West as context for the history of Sacramento.

Printing and Book Arts History Collection (BAC)
A representative collection describing and exemplifying the history of printing and books arts with emphasis on California fine presses and artists.

The purpose of this collection is to provide a resource for those studying topics related to the history of libraries, books, printing, graphic arts, binding, papermaking, type design and illustration, and for those particularly interested in California fine presses and artists. Material will no longer be actively collected in this area.

Sacramento Public Library History Collection (SPL)
Reference material covering the history of the Sacramento Public Library.

Material in this collection includes publications, early record books, scrapbooks, photographs, book catalogs, policies and procedures, newspaper clippings, and examples of public relations material. The purpose of this collection is to provide both patrons and employees with an understanding of the history of the Sacramento Public Library.

Special Collection (SPE)
Rare and/or fragile books that have been removed from general circulation for preservation or security purposes, but are of continuing value.

A book meeting any of the following criteria may be considered for transfer to the Sacramento Room from the circulating collection: It is a unique edition; it is inscribed or autographed by an important author; it is a first edition of significance; or it has significant manuscripts or other material inserted It is need of protection because of condition or value
Autographed books will rarely be added if the autograph is the only noteworthy feature.

III. Acquisitions and Accessions
Materials may be added to the collection by gift, bequest, purchase, transfer, exchange, abandonment or any other transaction by which title to the material passes to the Sacramento Public Library. When possible, the materials will be physically examined prior to acquisition.
Acquisitions are formally accessioned through the creation of a permanent accession record or catalog record. The documentation of the transfer of title for manuscript material or other donations of significant value is customarily obtained through a Deed of Gift.

Sacramento Public Library staff is not permitted to directly or indirectly appraise the monetary value of donations or prospective donations, nor can staff provide tax advice. Donors wishing to obtain a tax deduction under Section 170 of the Internal Revenue Code can request a list of qualified local appraisers.

The Sacramento Room will NOT accept materials that
  • Are not relevant to the mission and collecting scope of the Sacramento Public Library
  • Are intended entirely for resale
  • Pose hazards to staff, facilities or collections
  • Have questionable provenance or title
  • Are suspected to have been obtained in an illegal or unethical manner
  • Are of such extent, condition or format that the Sacramento Room would not be able to properly store, preserve or provide access to the material
  • Have unreasonable restrictions placed on them
  • Duplicate current holdings (up to three copies of each item are retained)
  • Compete with the collecting of other area repositories

Records documenting accessions include the following:
  • Accession records
  • Accession register
  • Deeds of Gift
  • Processing slips
  • Correspondence
  • Catalog records
  • Order records

IV. Deaccessions
Materials may be formally removed from the Sacramento Room collection through the deaccessioning process. Only materials for which the library has clear title will be considered for deaccessioning. All activities related to the removal process will be well-documented and undertaken in accordance with current professional standards and ethics. The deaccession of materials is noted on all related accession and catalog records. Unsolicited items that have been donated without documentation may be removed from the library without formal deaccessioning by following the general library weeding procedures.

Materials may be removed from the collection if they
  • Are not relevant to the mission or collecting scope of the library
  • Cannot be properly stored, preserved or used
  • Are duplicated beyond reasonable expectation of use
  • Would clearly be best served (both in terms of preservation and public access) by being transferred to another collecting institution

Materials will be withdrawn through the following means, in order of preference:
1) If requested, the material will be returned to the donor.
2) Items in good condition fitting the collecting scope of the Sacramento Public Library may be transferred to the circulating collections of a branch in the Sacramento Public Library system.
3) Archival material or items not fitting the collecting scope of the Sacramento Public Library will first be offered by sale, transfer or exchange to a cultural institution with an appropriate mission and collecting scope.
4) Materials may be deaccessioned through public sale, with proceeds going to fund future acquisitions for the Sacramento Room.
5) Materials may be removed through destruction or disposal.

V. Loans

a. Incoming Loans

Loaned materials from other cultural institutions, organizations or individuals may be received for temporary display, research or other educational use for a period not to exceed one year. Loan agreements will be reviewed after one year and may be renewed at that time.
Items on loan are considered to be in the temporary custody of the Sacramento Public Library and will be treated with the same care and handling as other collections material.
The library will not clean, treat, repair, or otherwise alter loaned items without the express permission of the lender.
The library will not reproduce loaned items without the express permission of the lender.
Unclaimed loans will be handled according to relevant state law.

b. Outgoing Loans
Material from the Sacramento Room may be loaned to qualified cultural institutions or organizations on a case-by-case basis, contingent on the type of borrowing institution, the condition of the items, the purpose of the loan, and the duration of the loan.

Items may not generally be loaned for a period of more than one year. Loan agreements will be reviewed annually and may be renewed.

Items may not be repaired, cleaned, or otherwise altered without advance written permission.
The receiving institution must sign a loan agreement form and agree to pay any fees, including those associated with appraisal, packing, transportation or exhibit preparation.
Loaned items must be credited as coming From the Special Collections of the Sacramento Public Library.

VI. Ethics and Standards
The Sacramento Room will strive to adhere to the codes of ethics and standards set forth by the American Library Association (ALA), Society of American Archivists (SAA), American Association for State and Local History (AASLH), and the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL).

Personal Collecting and Personal Gain
Employees assigned to the Sacramento Room must disclose in writing to the Library Director or designee any and all areas of personal collecting, or collecting as part of regular business activity. Any such employee who intends to purchase an item for a personal collection in the same area of collecting as the Sacramento Room must provide the Sacramento Public Library Authority (SPLA) the opportunity to purchase the item first. SPLA reserves the right to acquire any such object purchased or collected by the employee within a period of ninety (90) days at the documented purchase price. SPLA’s right of acquisition does not extend to materials collected prior to the time of employment at the Sacramento Room or to materials that are personal gifts or bequests.
No employees or volunteers will present themselves as representing SPLA or the Sacramento Room in negotiating or purchasing for personal collections.
No employees will use or give the appearance of using their positions or the information and access gained from their relationship with the Sacramento Room for personal gain or for the benefit of their own private collections.

Collecting levels defined in the ALA Guidelines for the Formulation of Collection Development Policies.
  • Comprehensive: a collection which contains all works in all languages and all formats in a particular field. Its aim is exhaustiveness. The Library will not collect in any field at the Comprehensive level.
  • Research: a collection which includes the major published source materials required for dissertations and independent research, including materials containing research reporting, new findings, scientific experimental results, and other information useful to researchers. It also includes all important reference works and a wide selection of specialized monographs, as well as an extensive collection of journals and major indexing and abstracting services in the field.
  • Advanced Study Level: a collection which is adequate to support the course work of advanced undergraduate and master's degree programs, or sustained independent study of less than research intensity. It includes a wide range of basic monographs both current and retrospective, complete collections of the works of more important writers, selections from the works of secondary writers, a selection of representative journals, reference tools, and fundamental bibliographic tools.
  • Initial Study Level: a collection which is adequate to support undergraduate courses. It includes selections of currently published basic monographs and retrospective monographs, a broad selection of works of more important writers, a selection of the most significant works of secondary writers, a selection of the major review journals, and current editions of the most significant reference tools and bibliographies.
  • Basic: a highly selective collection which serves to introduce and define the subject and to indicate the varieties of information available elsewhere. It includes major dictionaries and encyclopedias, selected editions of important works, historical surveys, important bibliographies, and a few major periodicals in the field.
  • Minimal: a subject area in which only the most basic works are selected, such as a basic text and a basic reference tool.