Rare Books

Browse our collection of books that cover topics ranging from Appalachia and the American South to the Civil War and Chattanooga. The Rare Books collection also houses first editions, signed copies, and fine bindings, including illustrated works imagined by renown artist and UTC alumnus Barry Moser. You will also find books by local authors like Robert Sparks Walker and Emma Bell Miles in addition to books penned by UTC faculty and alumni.

Use our Rare Books Search to discover published materials in Special Collections. If the location listed is Special Collections - 4th Floor, bring us the call number, and we'll bring out the book for you to enjoy in the George Connor Special Collections Reading Room (LIB 439).


Cover of our signed copy of Covenant

William Berger Collection of Southern Fiction

This collection features signed copies, first editions, and international editions of works by members of the Fellowship of Southern Writers. The collection includes books by many of the Fellowship's charter members, including Shelby Foote, Elizabeth Spencer, and Tennessee native Andrew Lytle.

Cover of Saw Mill and Woodworking Machinery catalog.

Jeffrey L. Brown Collection of Engineering

Collected by University of Tennessee at Chattanooga Professor Jeffrey L. Brown, this collection includes books, pamphlets, equipment catalogs, and manuals that document the engineering in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The collection covers topics as diverse as railroad engineering and hydraulics to iron mining and street cleaning.


Cover of Let the Dead Bury Their Dead and Other Stories by Randall Kenan

Fellowship of Southern Writers Collection of Literature

This collection includes books authored by members of the Fellowship of Southern Writers, many of which are signed first editions. Founded in 1987 by a group of writers who met in Chattanooga, the Fellowship of Southern Writers is a nonprofit organization which encourages the creation and development of literature in the South. They biannually in Chattanooga for the Celebration of Southern Literature.

Cover detail of The Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling.

Charles Hubbard Collection of Rare Books

Charles Hubbard, a history professor at Lincoln Memorial University, arranged for UTC to acquire his personal collection of rare books beginning in 2009.  Its scope varies, with books going back to the early 1500s and up to the 20th century.  Of note are first editions of books by Charles Dickens, William Faulkner, and Mark Twain; signed copies of Thomas Hardy and Faulkner tomes, nearly twenty volumes with fore-edge paintings; histories of Great Britain; fiction; early travel books; and theology texts.

Robert E. Lee's signature from Memoirs of the War in the Southern Department of the United States

Charles R. and Anne Bachman Hyde Collection of Southern History

This collection was donated to the university in the early 1950s by local historian, Anne Bachman Hyde.  Her collection includes over twelve-hundred titles of books focused on the American South, the Civil War, and American history. Of special note is Memoirs of the War in the Southern Department of the United States, written by the father of Robert E. Lee, Henry “Light Horse Harry” Lee.  This 1869 edition was Robert E. Lee’s personal copy and bears his signature on a fly-leaf of the book.

Tymon of Athens from the Second Folio by William Shakespeare

Paul Jordan-Smith Collection of Rare Books

Paul Jordan-Smith was an alumnus of the University from the early 1900s and later became a writer and editor with the Los Angeles Times newspaper. Also a rare book collector, Jordan-Smith donated several books to the University of Chattanooga around the time he returned to give a commencement address in the late 1940s. Of special note are a rare, double fore-edged book, Euripides' Supplices Mulieres, two Shakespearean plays, The Twelfth Night and Tymon of Athens from the second folio, and The Living Librarie, or, Meditations and Observations Historical, Natural, Moral, Political, and Poetical.

The Jabberwocky from Through the Looking Glass by Lewis Carroll, illustrated by Barry Moser

Barry Moser Collection of Illustrations and Fine Bindings

Barry Moser, a University of Tennessee at Chattanooga alumnus, is a world-renowned illustrator and artist, who has provided illustrations or cover art for over three hundred books, including many children’s books and classics.  Some of our Moser-illustrated titles are in a limited, numbered, and signed editions, including the artist's magnum opus, The Holy Bible.  The Special Collections also holds separate works of art by Mr. Moser, including watercolors and engravings.

Cover of Behind Rebel Lines: The Incredible Story Emma Edmonds, Civil War Spy by Seymour Reit

Prevost Collection of Civil War Fiction for Young Readers

This growing collection has over five hundred books, some published during the war.  New books and publications added as they are published or become available.  The collection is actively being compiled by former University of Tennessee at Chattanooga English Department head and George Connor Professor of American Literature, Verbie Prevost.

Fathom by Priest Cherie

University of Tennessee at Chattanooga Collection of Alumni Authors

Explore books authored by University of Chattanooga and University of Tennessee at Chattanooga alumni, including fantasy writer Cherie Priest, author and illustrator Barry Moser, and football star Terrell Owens.

The politics of haunting and memory in international relations

University of Tennessee at Chattanooga Collection of Faculty Authors

Explore books published by University of Tennessee at Chattanooga faculty ranging from political science and history to chemistry and literature. Faculty are encouraged to donate signed copies of their books to Special Collections to preserve their scholarly contributions to the university and their field of study.

Cover detail of Knapsack and Rifle by Robert W. Patrick

General John T. Wilder Memorial Collection of Civil War History

In the 1950s and 60s, the University of Chattanooga spent over $10,000 on an endowment from the Lilly Foundation of Indianapolis to over 1,000 titles relating to the American Civil War. Eli Lilly (1838-1898) was an Indiana officer during the Civil War, and a member of the 18th Battery, Indiana Light Artillery under the command of Colonel John T. Wilder, also a Hoosier and later a resident and mayor of Chattanooga. The collection includes regimental histories (mostly Union), battle narratives, and personal memoirs of the war.