“Weeding Out” a Success as Olin Makes Room for More

Olin Library.

Olin Library.

The process of removing about 60,000 volumes from Olin Library (to make room for others, including Art Library holdings) is nearly complete, according to University Librarian Pat Tully.

Olin started the work in 2012, guided by faculty and other experts in selecting duplicate, out of date, rarely circulated, and other books for removal as the library anticipated greater demand on the stacks starting in 2014. Olin holds about one million volumes and will continue to acquire books and other material every year.

“Weeding will be on hold through the summer,” Tully said. “Sometime next fall we will begin an ongoing weeding process – we will be weeding far fewer volumes than in the project, but can maintain a certain amount of growth space while we continue to add new print materials.”

The books that were “weeded” – some of which were sold by the Friends of Olin Library, had to satisfy the following criteria:

  • had been published before 1990,
  • was added to Wesleyan’s collection before 2003,
  • has never circulated since 2003 (when Olin migrated to the current online library system and for which there is detailed circulation data)
  • has circulated less than twice since 1996 (that is, for which Olin has summary circulation statistics), and
  • is held by 30 or more libraries in the United States (per WorldCat)
  • is held by two or more of our Connecticut partner libraries with whom Wesleyan shares a delivery service (that is, Connecticut College, Trinity College and University of Connecticut, Storrs).


Read more about the project and follow its progress here.