The James I. and Carol Aymar Armstrong Science Library, housed in McCardell Bicentennial Hall, provides curriculum support in the fields of biology, chemistry and biochemistry, computer science, environmental studies, geography, geology, physics, and psychology.
The library holds over 108,000 volumes including bound journals, government documents and monographs, and more than 81,000 maps. The library currently subscribes to over 300 electronic and print journals and provides access to hundreds more through subscription-based journal packages and freely available sources such as the Directory of Open Access Journals. Important indexing services such as Web of Science and SciFinder Scholar are available online via an institutional subscription, providing references and links to current scientific literature. Materials are collected in print, microform, and digital formats.
In addition to housing research materials, the library serves as a convenient and comfortable place to study. It features a computer lab, group study rooms, study carrels, tables and soft chairs, computers for quick look-ups and more intensive work, video viewing stations, microfilm and microfiche reader/printers, and assisted learning and computing devices. Loaner laptops, graphing calculators, a GPS unit, and other equipment are available for checkout at the Circulation Desk. A display case at the entrance to the library may be used by groups or individuals for curricular or co-curricular exhibits.
The Armstrong Library is staffed by three full-time and approximately 16 part-time (student) employees with assistance from staff at the Main Library. The number of student workers is reduced during summer months. Circulation and use policies are closely aligned with those of the Main Library.
Middlebury College has extensive collections relating to the history, politics, and culture of Vermont. Older material (pre-1900) and fragile and rare material is shelved in Special Collections. Material in the collection includes early Vermont maps, postcards, the Rutland Railroad Archives, and the Crown Point Road Archives.
The Middlebury Libraries acquire and provide access to information resources in a variety of formats to support the teaching and research needs of the College's students, faculty, and staff.
At a roomy 143,000 square feet—roughly 3 acres—the Davis Family Library on Storrs Avenue boasts 725 seats; wired and wireless networks; key service desks immediately accessible from a spacious, sunlit atrium; state-of-the-art classrooms; group study rooms; and offices for staff members supporting library and technology, as well as the Center for Teaching, Learning and Research and the Undergraduate Research Office.
Sensitivity to environmental concerns were paramount in the construction of the building. The carrels, reading tables and chairs, bookcase end panels, and architectural trim all use certified lumber, much of it harvested from the College's Bread Loaf campus forest in nearby Ripton. Linoleum rather than plastic or vinyl is used for counter and carrel surfaces, and the carpet is made entirely of recycled fibers.
New England firms were contracted whenever possible, including Island Pond Woodworkers in Vermont's northeast kingdom for manufacture of the carrels and end panels, Windham (Maine) Woodworking for millwork, and Beeken-Parsons in Shelburne for reading tables and chairs. Automatic lighting controls and an efficient heating and air conditioning system minimize energy use.
As with all major construction projects at Middlebury, special funding was applied to art work. Besides exhibiting art from the College Museum's permanent collections, outside the library The Garden of the Seasons by Michael Singer was commissioned; and hanging high above the atrium is Matt Mullican's mural L'Art d'Écrire.
When the Davis Family Library (then called the "Main Library") opened on June 28, 2004, it replaced the venerable Egbert Starr Library, which was constructed in 1900. Soon afterward, Starr Library was renovated to house the Donald Everett Axinn '51 Center for Literary and Cultural Studies at Starr Library, which opened in 2008.
Alison Fraker Reading Room
Karin Hanta, Director of Chellis House
The Government Documents Collection, located on the main level of the Davis Family Library, contains more than 250,000 publications published by various agencies of the United States Government from 1832 to the present. Government documents provide information on a vast range of subjects and in many formats, including print, microfiche, CD-ROM and floppy disks, videotapes, and online resources.