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Visiting the Archive

The Barbara Bates Center is closed to all researchers and visitors until further notice to comply with the University’s policy on COVID-19. We have processes in place to offer limited research support during this time. Please contact the Center at  if you have any questions.


  • The Center is located in Suite 2U, Claire M. Fagin Hall, 418 Curie Boulevard. Directions to Claire Fagin Hall.  The main entrance to the School is located on Guardian Drive.
  • The building is handicap accessible  .
  • To tour the reading room or Center, please schedule an appointment prior to your visit.
  • The Center is closed for official University holidays .
  • No bags, food, or drinks are permitted in the Ellen D. Baer Reading Room.
  • Children under the age of 14 must be accompanied by an adult.


  • Researchers must make an appointment prior to visiting the Center by emailing . Walk-in researchers cannot be accommodated.
  • Before visiting the Center researchers should consult the Online finding aids to the Center’s collections and provide staff with a full listing of requesting research materials, including collection name, box number, folder number and series (if applicable).
  • If you have never used our archives, you will need to review the Reading Room Rules on the researcher application . All researchers must fill out and sign an application prior to their visit. A valid form of photo identification must accompany the signed application in order to access the archives for the first time in a calendar year.  
  • Members of our archival staff are available to conduct research as a fee-based service on a case by case basis. Please contact  for more information.
  • The Center reserves the right to review all archive requests for restricted access, box counts, and scheduling availability.
  • The Barbara Bates Center and Ellen D. Baer Reading Room are open to researchers by appointment only Monday through Friday from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM (closed from 1:00 - 2:00 PM daily).


  • If you have been to an archive before but need a refresher guide on what information is on a finding aid, check out our quick guide .
  • If you have never visited an archive before, we recommend learning the parts of a finding aid to help you plan your visit.
  • Need help guiding your research to make your visit more efficient? Consider these questions:
    • What’s your paper/research topic? Identify and clarify which questions you intend to answer as you research.
    • What are you looking to find at the nursing history archive?
    • After reviewing the finding aids, which collections do you want to look at?
    • What are you looking for in these collections? What themes are you hoping to uncover? What specific document types (letters, reports, etc.)?

Barbara Bates Center for the Study of the History of Nursing
University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing
Suite 2U
Claire M. Fagin Hall
418 Curie Boulevard
Philadelphia, PA 19104-4217