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UTSC Finding Primary Sources

Learn what primary sources are and how to find them.

Navigating the Collection

The Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library's holdings are included in the main University of Toronto LibrarySearch.  Advanced search can be restricted to the holdings of the Fisher Library. However, some material is described only in onsite finding aids or card files.

The Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library is a non-circulating, closed stack library. Its resources may be used by all scholars and researchers, whether or not they are members of the University of Toronto community. Some material is hosted offsite.


Visit the following pages for more detailed information about:

Accessing the Collections

Reference and Research Assistance

Stack Retrieval Requests

Reproduction Policies and Pricing


About Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library

The Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library houses the Department of Rare Books and Special Collections including books, manuscripts and other materials; and the University of Toronto Archives and Records Management Services (UTARMS), which holds the official records of the University. The present building was opened in 1973. It is named in honour of Thomas Fisher (1792-1874), who came from Yorkshire to Upper Canada in 1821 and settled by the Humber River. There he operated a grist mill, and played an active role in the public life of the community. In 1973 his great- grandsons, Sidney and Charles Fisher, donated to the Library their own collections of Shakespeare, various twentieth century authors, and the etchings of the seventeenth century Bohemian artist, Wenceslaus Hollar. Since that time the Library has grown to approximately 600,000 volumes and 2500 linear metres of manuscript holdings.

Hours & Location

Seminar room and mezzanine by Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library


Year round: Monday-Friday, 9 a.m. to 5.00 p.m.

Extended hours from September 19, 2013: open on Thursdays until 8pm

The Reading Room closes 15 minutes before the building closes.



Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library, 120 St. George Street, Toronto, Ontario, Canada  M5S 1A5

Telephone: 416-978-5285 |

The Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library is located at the north-west corner of St. George and Harbord Streets, immediately to the South of the main University Library, Robarts.

Link to campus map.