Archives and Special Collections are open by appointment only, limited to UMN affiliates. Appointments must be made one week in advance of your visit. Contact for assistance or the curator of the collecting area you wish to use. We continue to provide scans of requested research materials when possible, especially for our non-campus clientele.


The Tretter Collection in GLBT Studies strives to make its collections open to all. Researchers do not need to have an affiliation with the University of Minnesota, or any institution, to use our collections.

Finding materials in our collections

The holdings of the Tretter Collection are described in a variety of databases and discovery tools. At the moment, the two main tools for discovering our collections are:

  1. the Tretter Collection's finding aid portal, and
  2. a targeted search for Tretter Collection materials within the University Libraries' central catalog 

To read instructions for using our finding aids, click here. To learn more about finding, accessing, and using online materials from the Archives and Special Collections, click here. Please contact us if you need additional assistance finding or selecting materials to request.

Requesting materials

Our collections are non-circulating. Materials are housed in secure, non-browsing stacks and are retrieved for users upon request. Some of our collections are stored in an off-site facility, requiring extra time to retrieve materials for patron use in our reading room.

Regrettably, due to limited staffing, we cannot accomodate walk-in researchers. We request that you contact the Tretter staff at least a week in advance of any planned visits to the Archives (if possible) to make an appointment and to request materials. Send an email to or with your request, and please include in your message:

  • the date & time you wish to come, and
  • a list of the specific boxes from the collection you wish to see. (Consult our finding aids and catalog records––accessible via the links above––to locate specific materials of interest.)

Feel free to contact us if you need assistance locating or selecting materials to request.

Visiting the reading room

Researchers view requested materials in the central Archvies and Special Collcetions reading room in the Wallin Center, located on the ground floor of the Elmer L. Andersen Library, on the West Bank of the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities campus. Policies and procedures for using our materials in the reading room are viewable here. Additional information for researchers planning a visit to the Archives and Special Collections is viewable here.

Visiting researchers may apply for for an Elmer L. Andersen Research Scholarship to support your use of our materials.

Using materials from our collections

Information about making reproductions of—or citing—materials from our collections, as well as general information about copyright and permissions is viewable here.

Digital collections

A small subset of materials from the Tretter Collection are available on the University Libraries' digital collections website.


All-gender restrooms

  • There are no all-gender restrooms in the Elmer L. Andersen Library. The nearest all-gender restrooms are:
    • Mondale Hall, 4th floor, rooms 461 and 462
    • Social Sciences Building, first floor, rooms 129, 136, and 177
    • Heller Hall, rooms 155, 555, 755, 919, 1019, 119, and 1219

For more information, explore the map of all publicly accessible all-gender restrooms on the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities campus.

Accessible entrances to the building

  • First floor on the south and northwest sides
  • Ground (street) level on the north side

~Want to make a financial contribution to the Tretter Collection? Donate online today!~