Brown University Special Collections Department

Location: The John Hay Library
20 Prospect Street
Providence, RI 02912

Address: Brown University, Box A
Providence, RI 02912

Phone: (401) 863-1514 Fax: (401) 863-2093

Contact: Rosemary L. Cullen


Internet address:>

Hours: Mon-Fri: 9-5 pm

Wheelchair Access: yes

The university was founded in 1764.

Information about holdings

  • Manuscripts: yes
  • Organizational records: yes
  • Printed material: ephemeral propaganda, treated archivally
  • Objects/ephemera: yes
  • Photographs: yes
  • Other holdings/notes: approx. 83 cubic ft. total.

Time periods/geographical regions documented:

20th century U.S.A.

Significant People/organizations/subjects documented:

John Preston's On Our Backs magazine

Collecting interests

Literary works relating to gays and lesbians, with a small component of history and sociology; left and right-wing pamphlet collections and manuscript collections of individuals and organizations such as ACT UP/RI. Particular interests include pre-Stonewall literature, and gay men's pulp fiction erotica.

Use requirements

Valid photo ID required. Note: requirements for using GLBT material differ from those for using other material at the repository.


Research space, copying, audiovisual facilities, exhibitions, reference assistance on site, telephone reference, and Internet reference (email/web).

Indices, finding aids, collection descriptions

Local on-line catalog, accessible via gopher or web; RLIN; OCLC (bibliographic information); also finding aids.