Skip to main content

The NMSU Library Archives and Special Collections is currently open by appointment only. Request an appointment through the Request for Research Materials form or by emailing Please allow 24 hours’ notice for appointments.

Caroline E. Stras Research Room

The NMSU Library Archives and Special Collections is open to all researchers Monday through Friday, 9:00 am - 4:00 pm during fall and spring semesters. We are open by appointment only during fall, spring, and summer breaks. Please request an appointment through the Request for Research Materials form or by emailing Please allow 24 hours’ notice for appointments. The Caroline E. Stras Research Room is located in Branson Library, 4th floor. We are happy to provide virtual reference services for those who cannot visit our facility in person.

Archives and Special Collections Research Room

The research room is available to NMSU faculty, staff, and students, along with researchers from our community and beyond. Through a generous endowment by Edward, Jo Ann, and Judith Sears, the room was named in honor of Caroline E. Stras, the first woman vice president of a bank in El Paso in the late 1950s. She broke down gender barriers in the local banking industry. Along with having the research room named in her honor, income from the endowment will be used to support the acquisition and preservation of collections in women's studies at the NMSU Library.

General Information

Plan your Visit in advance to avoid delays and allow us to have your requested material ready when you arrive!

  • Please check our Research Room Hours to avoid any closures.
  • The Research Room is located on the 4th Floor of Branson Library on the NMSU Campus.
  • Food and drink are not permitted in the Research Room.
  • Please allow time for retrievals. Retrieval time could vary between 10 to 20 minutes.
  • Material retrieval will not be done after 3:45 pm.
  • Reproductions of material will not be completed after 3:45 pm. Requests for Reproductions can be made through our   Duplication Services.
  • Archives and Special Collections staff are available to discuss the Research Room procedures and assist visitors and researchers.

Prior to Using the Research Room

  • Please review the Research Room Rules and Guidelines.
  • New visitors will be required to register to use Archives and Special Collections material.
  • A valid form of identification (Driver's license, Passport, NMSU ID) is required to gain access to the material.
  • All personal bags (i.e. backpacks, handbags, computer cases) must remain in the storage cubbies provided. The only material needed for research may be used in the Research Room.

We follow the recommendations of the ACRL/SAA Joint Statement on Access to Research Materials in Archives and Special Collections Libraries.

Using Resources in the Research Room

  • Only pencils will be allowed in the Research Room while working with materials.
  • Laptops and computing devices are permitted for taking notes in the Research Room.
  • Use of a digital camera or other image/video capture device, without flash, for research purposes is permitted. There is no additional charge.
  • Archival material should be returned to the folders and boxes they were removed from in the exact order they were found. If material appears to be missing or out of order, do not rearrange it, but please notify staff instead.
  • Computers in the Research Room are available to access findings aids, the library catalog, and other research needs. Computers are for registered visitors only.
  • There are electrical outlets available at some workstations in the Research Room, along with Wi-Fi internet access.