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Religion Collections in Libraries and Archives: Maryland, Virginia and the District of Columbia

The Catholic University of America: Oliveira Lima Library

Introductory Information

The Catholic University of America: Oliveira Lima Library

Address: Room 022, Mullen Library, 620 Michigan Ave., N.E., Washington, DC 20064

Telephone number: 202-319-5059

Contact information: [email protected]

Online catalog

Digital Collections link

Access Policies

Hours of service: 9am to 5pm

Open to the public: Yes, by appointment

Interlibrary loan: No

Reference policy: Access to the Oliveira Lima Library collections is by appointment only. Visitation should be scheduled via email at least one week in advance. [email protected]

Background note:
The Library was founded in 1916 by Brazilian historian, journalist, and diplomat Manoel de Oliveira Lima (1867-1928) and has been opened to the public since 1924. His original collection of some 40,000 volumes has expanded to over 46,000 items--books, serials, other printed matter, and manuscripts. The collection covers the history of the Portuguese-speaking world, with a special emphasis on Brazilian history and culture. It is widely regarded as the premier Luso-Brazilian collection in the U.S., with many materials available nowhere else in the country.

Content

Books and monographs
1700 to 3000 volumes, ranging from the 16th century to about 1930. The collection is strong in the religious history of the Luso-Brazilian world and the history of Catholic missions in the Portuguese empire, especially Brazil. There are substantial holdings of rare printed books from the 16th through the 18th centuries, including materials relating to Jesuit missions in China, India, Ethiopia, and the Americas; works about the Inquisition in the Portuguese empire; Protestant and anti-Jesuit controversial literature; and sermons by Portuguese and Brazilian preachers (1520-1930).

Holdings from the 16th century to 1930 are listed both in a card catalog and on OCLC. Online catalog available at https://libraries.catholic.edu/special-collections/oliveira-lima-library/index.html . Several monographs and pamphlets are available online (access by subscription only) at https://www.gale.com/primary-sources/brazilian-and-portuguese-history-and-culture

Periodicals and newspapers
About 2,500 titles (3,000 volumes) from the 19th and early 20th centuries. Subject emphases mirror those of the book collection.

Holdings are listed in a card catalog and a printout.

Archives, manuscripts, correspondences, and/or oral histories

About 2,000 items, with dates ranging from 1507 to 1930. Holdings include a 1759 codex by José de Morais da Fonseca Pinto on the history of the Jesuits in Maranhaõ and Parà states in Brazil; a 17th- century codex on the Inquisition; letters of Brazilian diplomat João Artur de Sousa Correia during his tenure as Minister to the Holy See, ca. 1889; and letters of Luso-Brazilian courtier and diplomat Alexandre de Gusmão (1695-1753) to various Brazilian and Portuguese prelates.

Holdings include a 1759 codex by José de Morais da Fonseca Pinto on the history of the Jesuits in Maranhaõ and Parà states in Brazil; a 17th- century codex on the Inquisition; letters of Brazilian diplomat João Artur de Sousa Correia during his tenure as Minister to the Holy See, ca. 1889; and letters of Luso-Brazilian courtier and diplomat Alexandre de Gusmão (1695-1753) to various Brazilian and Portuguese prelates.

Holdings in the Manuscript and Codex Collection are listed in "A Guide to the Manuscripts in the Lima Library, the Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C.," by Manoel S. Cardozo, Handbook of Latin American Studies Vol. 6 (1940), pp. 471-504.

Images
Around 600 items including, paintings, drawings, prints, busts, medals and netsuki from the Meiji Period. Holdings are listed partially in a card catalog, the library's online catalog and OCLC.

Maps
About 100 items, spanning the 17th to the mid 20th centuries, with strengths in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. There is no finding guide, but some items are available through the library's online catalog and OCLC

Databases and/or electronic resources
Monographs and pamphlets available online (access by subscription only) at https://www.gale.com/primary-sources/brazilian-and-portuguese-history-and-culture

Digital collections

Other holdings not listed above
4,000 pamphlets from Portugal and Brazil, encompassing the 19th and 20th centuries. Topics include Jesuits, missions, and colonial history. Available online (access by subscription only) at https://www.gale.com/primary-sources/brazilian-and-portuguese-history-and-culture

Subject Headings

Brazil--Religion; Inquisition; Jesuits; Missions and missionaries; Portugal--Religion; Sermons

Bibliography

Cardozo, Manoel S. "A Guide to the Manuscripts in the Lima Library, the Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C." Handbook of Latin American Studies Vol. 6 (1940): pp. 471-504.

Grow, Michael. Scholars' Guide to Washington D.C. for Latin American and Caribbean Studies. 2nd ed. Washington, DC: Woodrow Wilson Center Press; Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1992.

Henrich, Nathalia. "Oliveira Lima and the Oliveira Lima Library at the Catholic University of America". [Online]. Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Latin American History. 26 Sep. 2018.

Holmes, Ruth V., comp. Bibliographical and Historical Description of the Rarest Books in the Oliveira Lima Collection at the Catholic University of America. Washington, DC: Catholic University of America, 1926.

"Oliveira Lima Library" [Online]. Available HTTP. URL https://libraries.catholic.edu/special-collections/oliveira-lima-library/index.html December 2021

Oliveira Lima Library. Dictionary Catalog of the Oliveira Lima Library, the Catholic University of America. Boston, MA: G.K. Hall, 1970.