About Pitts Theology Library

Pitts Theology Library, one of Emory University's six instructional libraries, holds a distinguished collection of theological materials. With over 610,000 volumes, the library provides unusually rich resources for the Candler School of Theology and Emory University and has attracted international attention for some of its collections.

The growth of the library is due in part to the interest of a good friend of the Candler School of Theology, the late Miss Margaret A. Pitts of Waverly Hall, Georgia. Beginning in 1973, she made substantial gifts for new acquisitions, and in 1974 the library was named in honor of Miss Pitts and her father, W. I. H. Pitts.

History and Strengths

The primary emphasis in collection development is on materials related to the development of Christian history and thought. The library also acquires materials in contiguous areas that are related to the history of other religious traditions (especially early Judaism), the interpretation of Jewish and Christian scriptures (e.g., historical and philological works related to the ancient Near East, Greece, and Rome), the history of Christianity (e.g., political and social history of the lands in which Christianity spread), the development of Christian theology (e.g., philosophy, ethics, literature), and the practice of Christian life and ministry (e.g., music, sociology, psychology). While most materials collected are in English, German, French, and Latin, materials in other languages are also acquired as necessary.

The Pitts Library subscribes to more than 1,100 periodicals, with special strength in titles from sub-Saharan Africa, and typically adds over 7,000 volumes to its collections annually. The Special Collections of the library are extensive, including over 130,000 rare or special books and nearly 2,500 linear feet of unpublished archival materials. These collections include:

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