Goldthwait Polar Library


The Goldthwait Polar Library is under renovation!

Renovation is underway to convert the backroom of the library into two meeting rooms. Construction should be completed by mid-January. Once complete, the library will provide an information technology-enabled, collaborative space for research, workshops and other events. The library space is closed during renovations, but collections can be accessed by appointment. Please contact for more information.

The Goldthwait Polar Library (PLR), established in 1969, contains materials relevant to the polar and alpine regions of the world.  The library is named after Dr. Richard Parker Goldthwait, the founder and first director of the Institute of the Polar Studies, now the Byrd Polar and Climate Research Center. Dr. Goldthwait donated his personal collection of reprints, journals and books to the Institute and that became the nucleus of the library.

The primary mission of the library is to support the informational needs of the research scientists and graduate students of the Center.  Subject areas covered include:  glaciology, Antarctic geology, global climate change, polar ecology, polar meteorology, and the history of polar exploration.

  • In 2013 the library completed the digitization of BPCRC publications. They are now available in OSU’s institutional repository, The Knowledge Bank (KB). Future publications will be added as they are published. Reports in the KB are open access.
  • The library is not officially a department library of the Ohio State University Libraries, but the monographic holdings are available in their online catalog. The library follows their circulation policies and procedures; most of the material circulates. PLR is the designation for the library in the online catalog.
  • Rare historical volumes in the library include Sir Ernest Shackleton’s The Heart of the Antarctic and The British Antarctic Expedition 1907-1909, signed by Shackleton and Sir Douglas Mawson, and signed copies of Admiral Byrd’s books, Little America, Discovery, Skyward, and Alone.

Goldthwait Polar Library
Byrd Polar and Climate Research Center
176 Scott Hall
1090 Carmack Road
Columbus, OH 43210-1002

Voice: 614-292-6531
Fax: 614-292-4697
Hours: Open limited hours; please call before visiting.

Online Frequently Used Resources:

ERDC (Engineer Research and Development Center) online collection Knowledge Core to access copies of Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory: