The Rare Book Collection contains approximately 6,000 volumes. Special strengths include early accounts and studies of the polar regions from the 15th to early 20th centuries. The Rare Books include one of the world's leading collections on Russian America. Most Rare Books are listed in Goldmine, the library's online catalog. Ninety percent of the collection has been copied on microfiche. To preserve the fragile originals, patrons should use the microfiche copies unless there is a special need to consult the originals. Microfiche copies are shelved with the Alaska and Polar Regions Department’s Alaska book and periodical collection and are also available through interlibrary loan or direct purchase.