Smith College Special Collections, which includes the Sophia Smith Collection, Smith College Archives, and the Mortimer Rare Book Collection, is pleased to offer a research support program of fellowships and awards. These grants are intended to cover travel costs for in-person research. Applicants to the fellowship programs must demonstrate that their research interests and objectives would be significantly advanced by extended work in the holdings of Special Collections.


Smith College Special Collections offers five extended-term fellowships with awards of $2,500 each for research visits that extend beyond two weeks as well as several short-term fellowships for research visits up to two weeks in length with awards of $1,000.


  • Founded in 1942, the Sophia Smith Collection (SSC) is one of the most significant collections of women’s history in the United States that focuses on women working on behalf of other women and gender minorities. The SSC has substantive strengths in women’s reproductive rights and justice, women’s liberation movements, suffrage and civil rights, community activism, iconoclast creators, women’s economic justice, lesbian and queer communities, and women’s environmental justice. It is a collection that reflects the diversity and complexity of women’s lives and identities through the lens of social, political, and cultural change, and gender justice.
  • The Smith College Archives document the life of the College by collecting materials created by students, faculty, administrative and departmental staff during the course of their time here. The records in the College Archives can provide researchers with answers to specific questions or help them to understand broad social and cultural issues.
  • The Mortimer Rare Book Collection includes rare, historical printed books, medieval European manuscripts, literary archives of women writers, artists’ books, and other historical and cultural material texts. As part of Special Collections, these materials support the curriculum of the College and enable us to function as a laboratory for the exploration of material history and culture. The collection scope is chronologically and geographically broad, with substantial holdings in English and American literature, botany, history of science, early children’s literature, fine press books, and artists’ books. Of particular note are substantial holdings of Sylvia Plath, Virginia Woolf, and Mary Shelley.

Your information has been submitted. Thanks!