Archives Mission Statement

The Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory (CSHL) Archives is a state-of-the-art repository for all records of CSHL from its founding in 1890 to the present. The CSHL Archives is also a repository for personal collections of individuals who have been closely associated with the Laboratory through its research and education programs or development and business activities.

The mission of the CSHL Archives is to gather, document, and preserve a comprehensive history of the growth and development of the CSHL since 1890, covering not only the administrative and scientific legacies of the Laboratory and its faculty, but also the professional and social interactions of the people working here.

The Genentech Center for the History of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology (Genentech Center) is a scholarly research center associated with the CSHL Archives.

The mission of the Genentech Center is to gather and preserve information and materials related to the history of molecular biology genetics, and biotechnology; to contribute to the advancement of science, education, and society through innovative research, development, and dissemination of new knowledge on the history of molecular biology, genetics, life sciences, and biotechnology.

Operating in unison, the CSHL Archives and the Genentech Center:

  • Provide access to our materials to scholars, students, educators, and the public
  • Promote leading-edge uses of these materials by scholars, authors, filmmakers, visual artists, and other creatives
  • Develop scholarly, educational, and public programs for the worldwide community

The CSHL Archives and the Genentech Center fulfill their intertwined missions by:

  • Identifying, acquiring, and preserving original materials (rare books, manuscripts, lab notebooks, correspondence, photographs, scientific reprints, etc.) on the history of molecular biology, genetics, life sciences, and biotechnology
  • Digitizing our collections to reach as broad an audience as possible
  • Offering scholarships to support research using primary resources on different topics in molecular biology, genetics, life sciences, and biotechnology
  • Offering a fellowship program for professionals who are interested in learning and building professional skills in scientific archives
  • Organizing annual history of science meetings and special events that bring together scientists, scholars, journalists, and the public to discuss the intersection of science and history
  • Creating and curating exhibitions

Availability of Material

For specific information on the availability of materials or to arrange an appointment to use the Archives, please contact (516)367-8414 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Please consult our Permissions & Copyright Policies for any materials you wish to use.

This collection was processed under the grant History and Development of Molecular Biology: New Sources through the Hidden Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Archives Collections (1890-1910), (NAS11-RB-50178-11). Funding provided by the National Historical Publications and Records Commission. nhprc-2-m