A “special collection” at Othmer Library consists of many individual items of print material that have some unifying characteristic. Typically, this characteristic will relate to the provenance of the collection. In many cases, provenance refers to the person that compiled the collection and/or donated it to the Brooklyn Historical Society (BHS). Many times the provenance lies within BHS itself, as several special collections consist of materials compiled by Othmer Library concerning particular themes. For most special collections, BHS will catalog the content (which are usually books or other printed pieces) at the item level, using a call number with a prefix particular to each collection in order to identify the overall relationship. By searching on this prefix, a researcher can identify all the items that make up a particular special collection.
Following are links to descriptions of the Special Collections currently cataloged: