Rock Hall opens library, archives to public

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum opened its new library and archives to the public on Tuesday to give scholars and fans access to the stories behind the music through such “artifacts” as personal letters from Madonna and Aretha Franklin and 1981-82 video of the Rolling Stones tour.

CLEVELAND — The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum opened its new library and archives to the public on Tuesday to give scholars and fans access to the stories behind the music through such “artifacts” as personal letters from Madonna and Aretha Franklin and 1981-82 video of the Rolling Stones tour.

The collection, catalogued over the last few years, includes more than 3,500 books, 1,400 audio recordings and 270 videos, and is housed in the new four-story, $12 million building.

Thousands more books and recordings and hundreds of videos will be added as previously stored items and new donations are catalogued, said Andy Leach, director of the library and archives.

“We hope to serve music scholars, teachers, students and the general public,” Leach said. “We hope to see all of them here.”

Tuesday’s opening of the building on the Cuyahoga Community College in Cleveland, not far from the Rock Hall, occurred without a lot of fanfare.

The low-key opening allows the public to enjoy the library before a grand opening April 9.

The library also offers photos, albums and covers, oral histories and scrap books.