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Catherine McElvain Library


Updated June 20 – The SAR Library is closed to members and the public during the pandemic. Although the building will remain closed to in-person service for several months, we plan to provide service on a remote basis soon. Book due dates will be automatically extended. Contact the librarian through email: wolf@sarsf.org

American Anthropological Association COVID-19 Resources. The AAA is actively collecting news, publications, webinars, and teaching resources in response to the pandemic.


The Catherine McElvain Library is a special library serving the scholars, artists, staff, and members of the School for Advanced Research. The collection of books, periodicals, and archival materials is focused on anthropology, archaeology, and Native American art, with emphasis on the Southwest and Mesoamerica.

The library collections are open to the public for research. Book borrowing privileges are a membership benefit for all who join SAR. A current membership card functions as a library card.

Email: library@sarsf.org

Phone: 505-954-7234

Librarian: Katherine Wolf, MLIS

Service hours subject to staff availability. Regular hours are 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday. Please contact the library to confirm hours before visiting, particularly during inclement weather.

Catherine McElvain Library, photo by Jose Cruzado Coronel


The archival collections in the library are primarily institutional records relating to the history of SAR dating from 1907. Among the collections are the records of the Indian Arts Fund, the papers of Kenneth M. Chapman, the papers of Martha and Amelia Elizabeth White, records of the De Vargas Development Corporation, and papers of Rick Dillingham. The archives are open by appointment only.

Stacks, Catherine McElvain Library

As part of the Scholar Programs division, the library supports residential fellows and senior scholars with their research in anthropology, archaeology, and the social sciences. The library also supports the staff, interns, and resident artists of the Indian Arts Research Center on the SAR campus with their projects on Native studies, art history, and creative expression.

Support the Library

  • Buy a book for the collection from the SAR Library Wish List. Powell’s Books will ship the books directly to the library.
  • Shop our book sales online at AbeBooks.com for rare books and surplus donations. Proceeds benefit the School for Advanced Research and the library. temporarily suspended
  • Browse the ongoing book sale inside the library for books of interest, including some formerly owned by Edgar Hewett or Elizabeth White. Cash purchases benefit the library.
  • Donate gently used books. We accept recently published titles (in the last 15 years) about anthropology, archaeology, and Native American art. We also seek local guidebooks, regional fiction, and other topics of local interest for our Southwest collection. Due to space constraints, we are currently unable accept large donations.
  • Volunteer your expertise for a special project. The library welcomes volunteers with academic backgrounds in anthropology, library science, and related fields.

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