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Women in Appalachia WGST 225

An overview of West Virginia & Regional History Center and Appalachian Collection materials for Nina Riivald's Women in Appalachia course.

Researching at the West Virginia & Regional History Center

The West Virginia & Regional History Center (WVRHC) is the archives and special collections division of WVU Libraries.  Our mission is to preserve and provide access to the records that document the history and culture of West Virginia and the surrounding region. 

Security is important!

  • You must register the first time you visit to do research, after that you will only need to sign in on our daily ledger.
  • No food or drink in the Center!
  • No bags or purses in the manuscript reading room. Lockers are available

Need help? WVRHC staff are available to assist you. 

Contact Lori Hostuttler @ 304-293-1116 or 

Types of Resources at the WVRHC

Book Collection       

  • The general book collection is available for research at all times, but the books do not circulate and must be used in the Center.  Often there is a second circulating copy in the main library. 
  • Check the library catalog available on the Center’s website or the main library web site.   
  • Rare books are available by appointment only.


  • Most newspapers are on microfilm. 
  • There is no index so you will need to have some kind of date range to help narrow your search. 
  • A growing number of newspapers are available through Chronicling America on our website.


  • The online database, West Virginia History OnView, contains over 50,000 scanned images from across the state and region. It is not comprehensive, so if you don’t find something there, it is possible that images are available elsewhere in the Center’s holdings.

Archives and Manuscripts

  • This is the largest portion of our holdings. 
  • Original materials – correspondence, journals, business records, programs, minutes, images, reports and much more. Use the Archives and Manuscripts search on the Center website. 
  • If you find something you are interested in, note the A&M number.  For larger collections, if there is a list of contents or inventory available online, you should note the box numbers you are interested in. 
  • If there is no inventory online, then ask at our reference desk, a paper list may be available. 
  • To request materials for research, fill out a yellow slip available at the reference desk.
  • You will use the materials in the manuscripts room with a monitor. 
  • Copies can be made or you can take photos with your camera if you sign a release form.

Folk MusicOral HistoryMapsPrinted EphemeraDigital Collections, Access to Databases such as Ancestry

  • Find out more about these resources on the Center’s website.

Contact Lori Hostuttler @ 304-293-1116 or