The main entrance to the Van Pelt-Dietrich Library Center is now open. Van Pelt Library and the Fisher Fine Arts Library are currently open to Penn Card holders, Penn affiliates, and certain visitors. See our Service Alerts for details.

Address and Contact Information

3260 South St, Philadelphia, PA 19104
Accessibility information

General Information

The entrance to the Penn Museum Library is on the third level of the Academic Wing, opposite the doors to the Rooftop Terrace.

For Students, faculty, and staff associated with the University of Pennsylvania

Penn students, faculty, and staff may enter the Penn Museum and its library for free with Penn ID.

The Museum Library houses two special collections: the Daniel Garrison Brinton Collection of Rare Books and Pamphlets and a miscellaneous collection of rare books and facsimiles. In the Franklin catalog, these items will be listed as being held in "University Museum Library - Brinton Collection" or "University Museum Library - Locked Cases." Researchers who wish to consult materials from the Brinton or Locked collections should click on the "Request to View" button in the Franklin catalog record in order to register and request an appointment to view these items in the Museum Library or the Kislak Center Reading Room.

For All Other Visitors

The library is open to members of the public for independent college-level research during Penn Museum hours. During summers and the University's academic breaks (Fall Break, Spring Break, Special Winter Vacation, and January intersession), the library hours are usually reduced to weekdays only. 

Graduate students and post-doctoral researchers from other institutions can request permission to have access to the Penn Museum Library on Mondays and during its evening hours by e-mailing the library staff in advance at

Patrons can receive a quick introduction to the library catalog, library-provided equipment, and wayfinding within the library stacks by asking for assistance at the circulation desk near the entrance to the library. Appointments for advice on scholarly research with the Head of the Penn Museum Library are available by request.

The library's collections and reference services are not geared towards K-12 students, but children accompanied by an adult are welcome to use the library.

Research services

Reference assistance is provided by the staff of the Penn Museum Library. They can explain how to use the Franklin catalog, help you find materials in the Penn Museum Library collection, get started on a research paper, and explain complementary collections in other Penn Libraries. They are usually available Monday-Friday from 9AM to 5PM.

You can ask a reference question right from your computer.

Penn faculty, students, and staff may schedule an appointment for a research consultation. Penn faculty may arrange for course-related library instruction sessions which are customized to meet the needs of their students.