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Last Updated: Mar 17, 2014 URL: Print Guide RSS UpdatesEmail Alerts

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Firestone Library

Firestone Library

The Princeton University Library is a not a single building, but a system composed of many libraries and hundreds of collections. Of the libraries, the Harvey S. Firestone Memorial Library, at the corner of Washington Road and Nassau Steet, is the largest, with more than 70 miles of shelving housing some six million printed volumes.

Firestone is an open-stack library, i.e. you retrieve the items you need yourself and take them to the Circulation Desk on the 1st floor if you wish to borrow them. Note that not all libraries or collections are open-stack. Rare Books and Special Collections on the 1st floor in Firestone is a closed-stack area; you need to ask the staff to retrieve any items of interest. Also, these items do not circulate. A library such as the Marquand Library of Art and Archaeology is open-stack; however, its collections do not circulate.

Layout of the Firestone Library:

The library has 6 floors; the numbered floors (1-3) are above ground and the lettered ones (A-C) below ground.

1st Floor

Access Office: Here is where you obtain keys for Graduate Study Rooms other than the Hellenic Studies Reading Room (SHS). You will be asked for a $10 deposit and your Princeton University ID.

Circulation: Here is where you charge out and return items you have borrowed. For visiting fellows who are at Princeton for more than 3 months, the loan period is the academic year; for visiting fellows here for less than 3 months, the loan period is 8 weeks. Note: You must have your Princeton University ID activated at the Circulation Desk before you can borrow materials from the library.

Rare Books and Special Collections: Here you find rare editions and manuscripts related to Greece. For a list of the manuscript collections, see the Modern Manuscript Collections tab. In addition, there are a large number of manuscripts from the ancient Near East; literary and documentary papyri from Egypt; Arabic, Persian, Turkish, and other Islamic texts; medieval and Renaissance manuscripts and documents. To view a list of all available finding aids, please consult: PU Finding Aids. In order to consult these collections, you must be registered for a research account.

The Trustee Reading Room (General and Humanities Reference Collection) (DR): Here you will find dictionaries, encyclopedias, bibliographies, atlases, biographies, etc. as well as reference librarians specializing in the humanities.

A Floor (the floor immediately below the 1st Floor)

Current Periodicals Reading Room: Here you will find Greek newspapers such as: Kathemerine, Vema, and Eleutherotypia.

B Floor

Hellenic Studies Reading Room (SHS): The coordinates are B-6-N. This room contains two computers for catalog and database searching. There are several electric outlets for laptops. Note: There is no printer in this room. If you need to print, please go to the computer terminals on the 1st Floor. There are also a few reference works and current periodicals in the general area of Greek studies in SHS. Please note: You must charge out any library item you wish to keep in SHS.

B-floor Computer Cluster: Here you will find three iMac computers, one with a scanner, and several Windows workstations. The Microsoft Office suite is loaded on all computers for word processing and e-mail. The iMacs and PCs are networked to a single printer.

Near East Graduate Study Room (SNE): The coordinates are B-18-N.

Photoservices: A color photocopier is located near the main stairwell on this floor. Color copies are $1.00 per page. Black-and-white copiers are located nearby and throughout Firestone; the cost is 10 cents per copy. You have two ways to pay for photocopies: PAW points and prepaid generic photocopy cards available for purchase at the Circulation/Reserve Desk in denominations of $5, $10, and $25 (plus $1 for the card itself). To deposit money on your ID (PAW points) either go to the Frist Campus Center where there is a Value Transfer Station or go the TigerCard Online Card Office

In addition to the photocopiers, book scanners are located on C, B and the 3rd Floor; there is NO CHARGE for using these scanners.

C Floor

Microform Services (C-7-E): Here you will find the back issues of many newspapers and other publications of all types in microformat. Printing and scanning are free of charge.

3rd Floor

Classics Graduate Study Rooms (SCG, SCL, SC, and SCP): The coordinates are 3-11-G (Ancient Greek, SCG); 3-12-G (Latin, SCL); 3-13-G (Classics, General, SC; and Paleography (Epigraphy, Papyrology, Numismatics), SCP). Room 3-12-G holds the current unbound classics journals. [NOTE: due to renovation the Study Rooms have been temporarily moved to the A Floor, A-2-H, A-3-H and A-4-H] These study rooms are kept locked though all Princeton borrowers can gain access (you can either knock on the door or you can get a pass key from the circulation desk); if you anticipate that you will need consistent access to the rooms, you should request that Hellenic Studies contact the Department of Classics for permission to have a key issued to you via the Access Office. The circulating classics collection (Clas) is located just outside these rooms.

Please note:  Firestone Library and many other libraries on campus separate oversize books from regular size ones. Oversize items are identified by by the letters q, f or e (for quarto, folio, or elephant folio) at the end of the call number and, in Firestone, by pink call number signs on the stacks.

Firestone Library Call Numbers and Locations.

Map of Campus Libraries: for the physical location of libraries besides Firestone, e.g., the Marquand Library (SA), which holds works on classical, medieval, Byzantine and Islamic art and archaeology. Visiting and Post-doc research fellows also have access to the collections of the Princeton Theological Seminary (PTS) Library though registration is required to receive a PTS borrowing card.

On each floor, by the elevators, there are floor maps showing the coordinates (letters running north-south and numbers east-west) as well as a compass rose on most floors to help you orient yourself.


Catalogs and Databases

Catalogs and Databases

The Library's home page is the gateway to library catalogs, databases, e-journals, etc.

The Main Catalog is where you search to locate the call number of an item in the Princeton libraries. You can search by title, author, subject, keyword, or call number. There are a number of more advanced features such as "limits," which you can set to limit your search by language, date, country of publication, etc.; you can also sort your findings, e.g. by date; or you can use the "guided search" screen to insert up to three search terms, such as keyword, publisher, genre, etc. To search the catalog for Greek titles, please see the following transliteration table. Princeton uses the ALA-LC system, column 4.

If you cannot locate an item in the Main Catalog, search WorldCat (the world's largest bibliographic database).  You can initiate an Interlibrary Loan request through WorldCat by clicking on  in a title's "Detailed Record."  If an item is charged out, you may need to recall the item or use Borrow Direct (for books) to obtain a copy from another library.

The Princeton community has access to approximately 10,000 e-journals, most of them in science and technology. To view a few of the ones in the humanities and social sciences, choose e-journals on the Library home page. There are about 40,000 print journals.

You also have access to a large number of databases (online indexes, electronic texts). Choose Find Articles and Databases from the Library home page or go directly to the Hellenic Studies subject page.

Return to Headings 




H: Drive

The "H: drive," as it is commonly called, provides every Princeton user on campus a central network server. You can access your H: drive from an off-campus computer by establishing a Secure Remote Access connection (SRA).

Your H: drive is also mapped in the OIT Clusters on the B Floor. You can visit the OIT Solutions Center in Frist on the 100 level to register and configure your laptop for the network. For help with computer configurations, etc., you can also call the OIT Help Desk at 258-4357 (8-HELP).


A laptop can be borrowed for 3 hours from the Firestone Circulation desk or from Marquand Library. Machines are equipped with the Microsoft Office suite of software and cables (long and short) for connecting to the Internet at worktables throughout the library. You can print from your laptop to a PHAROS Print Release Station.

Wireless Access

In order to gain full access to Princeton's wireless network, you must register your wireless device with OIT or contact Carolyn Hoeschele, the computer support person for the Program in Hellenic Studies. Her email address is: and her telephone number is: 258-0808.


PHAROS Print Release Stations are available on the 1st, B and C Floors of Firestone Library.

1. After you click on the print icon on the browser toolbar to print the desired document, a menu will pop up.
2. Enter your userid (netID) and password.
3. Go to a PHAROS Print Release Station and type your userid (netID) and password.
4. Highlight your document and click print.
5. See here for printing from a laptop to a PHAROS Print Release Station.

Return to Headings


Subject Specialists

Subject Specialists

Wayne Bivens-Tatum, Philosophy and Religion, X86367
Bobray J. Bordelon, Economics, X83211
Stephen Ferguson, Rare Books, X83165
Jeremy Darrington, Politics, X8-3254
Alan Stahl, Numismatics, X89127
David Jenkins, Classics, Hellenic Studies and Linguistics, X85811
Elizabeth Z. Bennett, History, X80496
Sandra L.Brooke, Art and Archaeology, X85860
Thomas Keenan, Russian and Slavic Studies, X83592
Don C. Skemer, Manuscripts, X83186
James W. Weinberger, Near East Studies, X83279
Susan B. White, Sociology and UN Documents, X84814

For additional subject specialists, see Subject and Reference Specialists under Research Help on the Library home page.

Return to Headings


Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How late is the library open? The Firestone Library is normally open 8am-11:45pm M-F and 9am-11:45pm Sat-Sun. The Reserves and Current Periodicals Reading Room on the A Floor stays open until 2am Sun-Th.

2. Can I bring parents, siblings, or friends into Firestone? Parents and siblings have access by means of their TigerCards, and friends may if they attend a university that has reciprocity with PU (mostly institutions in the U.S.). Otherwise, visitors must pay $34 for one week of access; $68 for one month; and $300 for one year.

3. For how long may I charge out books? For visiting fellows who are at Princeton for more than 3 months, the loan period is the academic year; for visiting fellows here for less than 3 months, the loan period is 8 weeks.

4. How many books may I charge out at one time? Unlimited.

5. I cannot find the book on the shelf. What do I do? Check the status in the Main Catalog. Is the book charged out to someone else? Make certain that you have the correct location code and call number, and that you have looked for the book in the location specified. Is the book oversize? If so, it is separated from the regular-size books with a similar call number. Look for pink lables above the stack ranges in the aisles. If you are certain that you are looking in the correct location and have not been able to find the book after a few days, you may place a trace request for the book. The library staff will then look for it and notify you when (or if) it is located. If it cannot be located, please place a Borrow Direct or Interlibrary Loan request.

6. Will I be notified when an Annex request has arrived? Yes, by e-mail.

7. Are there charges for printing? For photocopies, yes; for printouts from computer workstations or microform readers, no.

8. Are there color printers? Yes. In the New Media Center, 130 Lewis Library. Click here for more information.

9. Is there a scanner? Yes. There are 3 flat-bed scanners on the C Floor and four slide scanners in the New Media Center, 130 Lewis Library.

10. Is there a typewriter? Not in the library, but in the Frist Campus Center.

11. May I bring my laptop into Firestone? Yes. Users who bring personal computers or personal wireless access point devices into Firestone Library must register them with the Access Office or Library Security.

12. Where can I make photocopies? There are photocopiers throughout Firestone and in the branch libraries (see the List of copy machine locations and payment method).

13. Where do I get photocopy cards? At the Firestone Library circulation desk or the Value Transfer Station in the First Campus Center. You may purchase a card with cash or credit card.

14. How much does it cost to photocopy? $0.10 per page.

15. Is there a color copier? Yes, near the main stairwell on B Floor. Cost is $1.00 per page.

16. Where are telephones and restrooms? There are no pay phones in Firestone; however, campus telephones are located on A and C Floors (near the elevators). Restrooms are located on all floors.

17. May I use a USB key (flash disk) to store data? Yes. USB keys (flash disks) can be used on all Library Web Computers.

18. To what can I download articles, books, dissertations that are available electronically? To a USB key (flash disk) or a floppy disk on the computers on the 1st floor. You can also email them to your account or save them to the H: drive (see above under "Computers").

19. For how long may I access the databases and my e-mail after I leave Princeton? For 1 month.

20. How do I access databases overseas? Via the Library's EZproxy Server or a VPN (Virtual Private Network). See here for information on how to use and configure a VPN.

21. Whom do I contact if I have questions about the library's collections? Dave Jenkins at or 258-5811 or any reference librarian.

22. Whom do I contact if I have technical computer questions (e.g. about software, hardware, e-mail)? The computer support person for the Program in Hellenic Studies, Carolyn Hoeschele, at or 258-0808. You can also contact the Help Desk of the OIT (Office of Computing and Information Technology) at 258-4357 (8-HELP).

Contact the Hellenic Studies Librarian

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Dave Jenkins
Contact Info
B-17P-1 Firestone Library
(609) 258-5811
Office hours: Tuesdays 2:00-4:00pm
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Schedule an Appointment:
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