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Conducting Research at McClung

Researchers interested in visiting the museum’s collections should fill out our online form at least two weeks in advance of your visit. We kindly request that all research give at least 2 weeks notice prior to visits. The appropriate curator will be in touch regarding your request as soon as possible.

Research Request Form

Researchers planning to study the collections should read the Collections Access Guidelines and Visiting the Collections. Please note if the applicant requesting access is a student, the museum will require a letter of support from a faculty advisor.

Please note that the Archaeology collection is temporarily closed for research.

McClung Museum collections areas include:

  • Archaeologysoutheastern US archaeological and bioarchaeological collections, North American ethnology collection. Temporarily closed for research.
  • Arts & Culturenatural history prints, material culture from around the world, tourist photography, historical collections about Knoxville and Tennessee, American and European fine and decorative arts, military collections, among others (Curator Cat Shteynberg)
  • Paleoethnobotanyarchaeological botanical collections, modern comparative seed, fruit, and wood collections (Associate Curator Kandi Hollenbach)
  • Malacologycomparative and archaeological collections of freshwater mollusks (Curator Gerald Dinkins)

All curators may be reached by phone via the museum’s main office: 865-974-2144.

Visiting the Collections

Please note that the collections are not open on weekends or state holidays. Access is provided only during regular staff working hours: Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Please consult Parking & Directions for information about the museum’s location and parking arrangements. Arrangements for extended parking (more than two hours) can be made after your arrival.

Upon arrival, inquire at the front desk for the location of the office of the staff member who is to help with your visit. If you find that you will be late by more than one hour, please call the museum at 865-974-2144 so that they may inform the staff member.

Researchers must agree to and sign the Access to Collections Guideline before completing any research at the museum.
The museum has an in-house photocopy machine that may be used by scholarly visitors, if the relevant curator approves the copying of records. A per page charge may be assessed. Some records are available in digital format and may be copied to electronic media, with curator approval.
Photographs of artifacts in the collections may be taken with staff permission with the exception of objects that have been repatriated to American Indian tribes, which require permission from the relevant tribe. The museum reserves the right to limit views taken if the objects are judged to be fragile, and photography and handling would cause damage. Visitors must provide their own photographic equipment. The museum has only limited lighting and copy stands for photography.

Such photographs are for personal and research use only. Researchers should fill out a Rights & Reproductions Form for any other use, including scholarly publication, exhibition, electronic transmission, or general distribution in any medium.

Orders for professional publication-quality prints, transparencies, and digital images may be placed with the museum’s Rights & Reproductions department. Please see Rights & Reproductions for more information about these photographic services, as well as our photo policies, terms of use, and fee schedules.