The Oberlin College Libraries (OCL) is a system of libraries located in Oberlin, Ohio comprising the Mary Church Terrell Main Library, Clarence Ward Art Library, Conservatory Library, and Science Library.

Oberlin College Libraries
Oberlin College - Mudd Learning Center.jpg
TypeAcademic library
LocationOberlin College
148 West College Street
Oberlin, Ohio 44074 United States
Coordinates41°17′37″N 82°13′00″W / 41.293714°N 82.216782°W / 41.293714; -82.216782Coordinates: 41°17′37″N 82°13′00″W / 41.293714°N 82.216782°W / 41.293714; -82.216782
Other information
DirectorAlexia Hudson-Ward
Oberlin College Library is located in Ohio
Oberlin College Library
Location in Ohio

The recipient of the ACRL Excellence in Academic Libraries Award in 2002, the Oberlin College Libraries are recognized for superior collections and services. The library system has more than 2.4 million items of print and media materials, as well as extensive online journals and research databases. OCL is a member of the OhioLINK consortium which provides rapid access to an additional 50 million volumes from colleges and universities across Ohio. On October 6, 2018 the Main Library located in the Mudd Center, was named in honor of Oberlin graduate and one of the nation's first black women to earn a four-year degree, Mary Church Terrell (class of 1884, 1888, and Hon. 1948). [1]



Under the leadership of college librarian Azariah Smith Root (1887–1927), the Oberlin College Library grew by the end of his tenure to the sixteenth largest academic library in the nation. The former central library, which was funded by Andrew Carnegie, opened in 1908 and served both the college and the town of Oberlin for almost seven decades. The current main library in Mudd Center opened in 1974. The Oberlin College Library, under the direction of Library Director Eileen Thornton, was a founding member of OCLC[2] and also the first independent college library to join the OhioLINK consortium. The library directors of the Oberlin Group, a national consortium of selective liberal arts college libraries, first met at Oberlin College in 1986.

Facilities and ServicesEdit

Azariah's Café in the Academic Commons.

The Mary Church Terrell Main library, located in Mudd Center, houses the social sciences and humanities collections, special collections, and the Oberlin College Archives. The library system also encompasses the Conservatory Library, the Clarence Ward Art Library, the Science Library, and a central storage facility. The Academic Commons on the main level of Mudd Center opened in 2007 and was dedicated as the Robert S. Lemle ‘75 and Roni Kohen-Lemle ‘76 Academic Commons in 2011. It is a hub of social and academic activity, with spaces for collaborative work and tutoring, in-depth research appointments, learning support services, and technology support in partnership with the Center for Information Technology. The Academic Commons features an electronic classroom, Azariah's Café, computer workstations, six group study rooms, circulation and reference services, and the Writing Center.


  1. ^ "Libraries & Collections | Oberlin College and Conservatory". Oberlin College and Conservatory. 2017-02-08. Retrieved 2018-02-01.
  2. ^ "[Ohio College Library Center Annual Reports 1967/1968 - 1970/1971]" (PDF). ED059730. 1971 – via ERIC.

External linksEdit