ARL Collections


The Adirondack Research Library serves as a repository for research materials which support the educational mission of the Kelly Adirondack Center of Union College and the College’s long standing connection with the Adirondacks. At the core of the collections are materials donated by Paul Schaefer, whose home grown library served as the impetus for the development of the library.


The archival collections at the ARL span almost a century and document the turbulent terrain conservationists navigated to establish and protect the Adirondack Park. The materials highlight different approaches that influenced U.S. policies and attitudes toward protecting the environment.

Archives provide first-hand, documentary evidence from the time period researchers are interested in. The ARL archival collections are one-of-a-kind records created by individuals and organizations reflecting their daily life or course of business. Unlike traditional library book collections, the archival materials are primarily unpublished and unique. Formats range widely from photos and letters, to 3-dimensional objects and ephemera.

An overview of select collections can be viewed here


Books at the ARL cover a wide array of subject matter including biographies, histories, guides, and more. With the exception of our guide books, materials do not circulate. These can be searched using the Schaffer library catalog.


This collection showcases unique historic maps of the Adirondacks and New York State from the 18th-20th centuries.

Other Materials

The library has videos of events at the ARL, architectural blueprints of homes designed by Paul Schaefer, subject files, works of art, NYS DEC unit management plans, and other items.