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Transportation of Special Collections Materials: Shipping and Documentation


Per Risk Management, all transport must be done by Library Collection Services (LCS) or by approved campus and external vendors. Campus options include approved staff driving institutionally-owned vehicles and TR&S. External vendors include professional art handling and shipping services such as FAST, Artex, U.S. Art, or Maquette. Commercial shippers, such as UPS and FedEx, may be used in certain circumstances, following these procedures. Please note that special collections materials should never be transported on foot or by personal vehicle. Other arrangements other than those listed above must be made through Risk Management.

When sending and receiving shipments, loading docks should be used when possible and the need to rearrange cargo outdoors mid-transport should be minimized.

All containers must be labeled on the outside with destination/location code and an individual's attention (e.g. PR 344 ATTN: Tara Kennedy). Use these label templates to create shipping labels.

All pickup requests must originate with the owning collection or designated units. If the requestor is not the same as the recipient, the requestor must alert the recipient of the shipment. If you must make a shipment to or from a building in which your unit does not have a service point, another unit with a service point in that building can facilitate the shipment; for example, staff in BRBL's 120 Wall St location could facilitate a shipment on behalf of Preservation for exhibitions in SML.

Scheduling the Shipment:

Vendor: Contact vendors directly to arrange shipment.

LCS: LCS has created a form for you to use to schedule shipments. To obtain access to the form, go to Software Center on your computer and look for the LCS Transports app. If it is not listed in your Software Center, place an online Service Request to Library IT to ask to have the application added to your computer. Instructions for using the LCS form are available online. When completing the online request form, be sure to use the notification email function to alert the recipient of the request.

Deliveries from collection locations to units at 344 Winchester are considered "redeliver" requests by LCS.  This is because these shipments are picked up from one location and then taken to LSF to be redelivered to the intended final destination.

All special collections units will work within an agreed upon lead time of at least one day for booking shipments; units will have the ability to provide a preferred delivery deadline if the shipment is not time-sensitive. Special collections units and Preservation should limit rush (less than 24 hour) or on-the-fly shipment as much as possible; however, procedures are in place to handle time-sensitive shipments. Please email Mike Dadio to schedule a rush shipment.

Consult the LCS special collections deliveries chart on the LCS website to see the service points for each of the dedicated trucks and the order deliveries are made throughout the day.

Materials may be moved between trucks at the Library Shelving Facility (LSF) and kept there overnight in a controlled and secure environment.

Please note that non-containerized material will not be delivered by LCS staff in inclement weather.


Sufficient records and manifests for containers and shipments that document the chain of custody during transport must be generated and kept.

If you are an Aeon user:

  1. Create a transaction in Aeon for each item being transported.
    • In most cases, this can be accomplished by placing a request for that item in the usual way. However, transactions should still be created for items which are not yet processed or cataloged, or for archival collections where the item to be transported is smaller than the unit (or container) by which the collection is usually requested.
      • For example, an archival collection may usually be requested by the box, but you may only be transporting a single item from the box. These requests should be placed manually and include as much specific description as possible. If required by unit policy, a copy of the request (call slip) should be left behind when the item is removed. One copy should travel with the item, and the third copy may be retained for reference.
  2. Depending on unit policy, transportation of materials will be tracked using "events" or "queues." All transactions for a single shipment should be associated with the appropriate event or moved to the appropriate queue for outgoing shipments.

If you are not an Aeon user:

  1. Create an inventory list of package contents.
  2. Place one copy in the box and keep one copy for reference.
    • Be as specific as possible when describing what is being shipped.
    • A basic shipment manifest may be generated through the LCS request systems using the spreadsheet feature.
    • Please note that you can put all of the barcodes of the items you are shipping into the LCS Transport form.

Born-Digital Accessioning Project:

If you are sending media to the Digital Accessioning Support Service (344 Winchester) for disk imaging, please also use the instructions provided by the Born Digital Working Group for entering metadata about the items in your shipment. Unique identifiers must be associated with each media item; see the Born Digital Working Group instructions for further information.