Collection Policy

The Scandinavian Immigrant Experience Collection in the Robert A. L. Mortvedt Library of Pacific Lutheran University is a depository of historical materials relating to immigrants to the Pacific Northwest from Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden. The collection includes items which support the academic, educational, and research programs of the university and the research needs of scholars beyond the immediate university constituency. The collection is augmented by other books and materials in the Mortvedt Library and by artifacts, works of art, and other materials in the collections of the university’s Scandinavian Cultural Center. The collection is an administrative department of Mortvedt Library. The responsibility for the management and development of the collection rests with the archivist under the delegated authority of the Director of the Library and the Office of the Provost.

Types of Materials Collected

a. Formats

The Scandinavian Immigrant Experience Collection includes types of materials which are normally found in archives and local and regional history collections. These include, but are not limited to, books, pamphlets, newspapers, periodicals, photographs and prints, slides, audiovisual recordings, oral histories and transcripts, manuscripts, maps, drawings, clippings and other ephemera, and printed memorabilia. Artifacts and works of art, more appropriate for a museum or an art gallery, are not collected for the Scandinavian Immigrant Experience Collection, but if received, may be transferred to the Scandinavian Cultural Center.

b. Subject Coverage

The Collection is limited to materials relating to Scandinavian immigrants in the northwestern United States. General works related to Scandinavian immigrants, their native countries, or the history of the Pacific Northwest may be added to the circulating collection of Mortvedt Library. Exceptions may be made for items which are rare, valuable, or fragile if they have a distinct relationship to the experience of Scandinavian immigrants.

Materials written expressly for Scandinavian immigrants and published in the United States or abroad, including fiction and non-fiction, are collected. These may be either on specific topics or for special purposes (music, school books, religious literature, occupations, guides, manuals, etc.).

The Collection includes literature produced by immigrants which relates to their personal experiences before, during, and after immigration, and which describes and interprets the experiences of others.

Biographies and autobiographies, family histories, and institutional and organizational studies (including resources such as directories, catalogs, rosters, brochures, letters, diaries, etc.) are included. However, the major focus of the Collection is not on genealogical materials.

Collection Policies and Procedures

a. Collection Management

The collection, preservation, and use of materials in the Scandinavian Immigrant Experience Collection are subject to the general policies and procedures governing other collections in the Archives and Special Collections.

b. Acquisition of Material

All materials given to the Collection become the exclusive property of Pacific Lutheran University. A gift to the Collection shall be conveyed by a deed or other legal instrument describing the material, stating any use restrictions, and listing any exceptions to the conveyance of full property and literary rights. The archivist shall have the right to dispose of gift material in any way she/he wishes. This includes the right to give such material to other institutions.

As an interested party and for the protection of its donors and itself, the curator will not appraise gifts to the Collection. However, she/he may suggest to a donor that an appraisal is desirable and assist in obtaining one.

The donor of materials agrees to allow The Scandinavian Immigrant Experience Collection to make at least one reproduction of each item that is considered essential to the preservation of the original or if it contributes to the research and educational purposes of the Collection. Furthermore, the donor of materials agrees that the curator and members of the archives staff shall not be held liable for any copyright infringement by a user of the materials as long as the user adheres to the provisions of the Copyright Law.