Physics Library

Pfeiffer Physics Library

Save Our Library!

The Gustavus A. Pfeiffer Physics Library has been an essential part of the Physics department for over 55 years - and now WashU has decided to remove all books from its shelves by the end of this semester.

A university cannot be a "community of teachers and scholars" without its libraries. The Gustavus A. Pfeiffer Physics Library was built with generous funds from the Pfeiffer Foundation in the 1960s. At this time, only 200 out of 36,000 books are still in the library and only for a few more months per current WashU plan. We urge WashU to reevaluate its decision to make our library an empty space with no books to the detriment of our community of graduate and undergraduate students, fellow post-docs, researchers, staff and faculty.

As an R1 institution, WashU should have a clear grasp on how important libraries are to the development of research and departmental collaboration. As a place that values diversity and inclusion it should also be clear that libraries are a lifeline to students as they provide free and easy access to relevant literature, material support such as computers and printers and help foster a sense of belonging and community within the department through the regular use of its facilities.


In August, 2021, the WU Libraries removed additional books from the Pfeiffer Physics Library, only leaving a small collection of reference and reserve books. Those books are scheduled to be removed in May 2022. At that point, the Pfeiffer Physics Library will no longer exist as a library.