Interlibrary Loan

shelves of books in a library

Are you looking for materials that the Berkshire Athenaeum doesn’t own? You may still be able to get them through Interlibrary Loan.

The Athenaeum is part of a larger network called Central Western Massachusetts Automated Resource Sharing, Inc. (CW MARS). If you can’t find an item in our library, try searching “All CW MARS Libraries” in the catalog. Locate the correct item and place a hold for it to be sent to the Athenaeum. We will call or email you when it comes in and we’ll hold it for seven days at the Circulation Desk (or in the Children’s Library for youth materials).

If CWMARS doesn’t have the item, requests can be made to receive materials from other areas of Massachusetts. These requests are made and processed through the Commonwealth Catalog (ComCat) and can be done by the patron or the Reference Department.

If the material is not owned by any Massachusetts library, the Reference Department can request items from other states through WorldCat. While we try to only obtain free items for our patrons, there are some times where lenders charge a fee. Patrons will be asked if they still want the item in these cases, and they will pay the fee themselves.

A request does not guarantee that the item will be loaned to the Athenaeum. If an Interlibrary Loan is filled, loan periods and fines are determined by the lending library. Athenaeum patrons are responsible for paying for lost, damaged, or overdue materials.

For more information about Interlibrary Loan view our Interlibrary Loan Policy or call the Reference Department at (413) 499-9480 ext. 202.