In addition to the Graduate Library's collections of books and periodicals, the Special Collections Library holds a growing number of rare Hebraica books and manuscripts including a 10th century Pentateuch, an 18th century miniature Torah scroll, high quality facsimile reproductions of the Leningrad Codex, the Rothschild Miscellany and Damascus Pentateuch, and papers of Yehudah Leyb Levin, a prominent rabbi in Detroit during the first quarter of the 20th century. The Special Collections Library is also home to part of the Leo W. Schwarz Collection, which is rich in rare material on Jewish mysticism, Hasidut, and publications by residents of post-World War II displaced persons camps in Germany. 

The Frankel Center played a lead role in the acquisition of the following, which are also housed in the Special Collections Library.  



The Agam Haggadah


Sabbath candlesticks

Challah cover

Challah cover


Trinket box in the shape of a Hanukkah dreidel


A collection of pushkes (charity boxes)

Soviet Jews

Button from a rally to free Soviet Jews

Irwin Alterman Haggadah Collection

In 2015, the Special Collections Library received an extensive Haggadah collection that belonged to the late Irwin Alterman of West Bloomfield, Michigan. This collection includes approximately 1,800 Haggadot, and is said to be the largest existing at any public university in the United States. 

Jewish Heritage Collection Dedicated to Mark and Dave Harris

The Jewish Heritage Collection consists of over 4,000 pieces of artwork, objects, books, and ephemera on all aspects of the Jewish experience, a collection that continues to grow. A database of photographs with full descriptions may be viewed here


Joseph T. and Marie Adler Collection of Holocaust Materials

The Adler collection consists of correspondence, documents, posters, stamps, currency, and other Holocaust memorabilia and realia assembled by Mr. Adler over the course of more than fifty years.

Weinreich Collection

The Weinreich materials housed in Special Collections include manuscripts, personal documents, correspondence, professional papers, rare books, and audio recordings by various members of the Weinreich family.