MINITEX offers extensive reference and referral services to help you find answers to your questions on any topic, and when we say any topic, we mean it!
MINITEX offers extensive reference and referral services to help you find answers to your questions on any topic, and when we say any topic, we mean it! Here is a sampling of a few recent requests:
- Artist Charles Deas & Doty Treaty Abercrombie Trail
- Aesop fable "Donkey and the Thistle"
- Reviews of standard national tests - Mental Measurements Yearbook
- SAMS Photofacts - wiring for a 1959 Ford automobile radio
- Lyrics for "Lilies in the Moonlight"
- County history information
- Original specifications of a 1950s boat, The Tarpon
- Scholarly articles from a variety of journals
- Patent applications and company histories
- News articles from the Star Tribune, Wall Street Journal, and New York Times
MINITEX Reference Services can be used to locate information beyond your library's scope, a subject specialty that you are not familiar with, or just to make sure your patron is getting the best possible information from all resources available. To complete each question we not only use online resources, the University of Minnesota's and Minneapolis Public Library's collections, but also national and international resources and experts.
Our goal is to send a response as soon as we are able after receiving the request. Over 95% of our requests are filled within one business week. We also accept RUSH orders and try to accommodate the needed timeline. Our responses include a memo describing the research process, resources used, answer to the question, any requested materials, and suggestions for further research or referral to other libraries. Printouts from databases or other online resources, photocopies and books are sent to the appropriate library through MINITEX delivery, e-mail, fax or MEDD.
Occasionally even the MINITEX Reference Staff is stumped, so we look to the broader library community for assistance. Some of the options we have pursued include: publishing the question in Reference Notes, on the stumper's listserv (wombats_l), or even subject specific message boards. Just last week we received a fax from a gentleman that was surfing the web and found a MINITEX inquiry from 1996 and wondered if we still needed assistance in locating a song's lyrics because he had a copy.
Reference questions can be submitted either through our web form, https://www.minitex.umn.edu/reference/refdb/index.asp, our e-mail address, email@example.com, via the phone at 1-800-462-5348, or by snail mail. Use the method most convenient for you!