The Scientific Library Collection incorporates two earlier collections: Moscow State Institute for History and Archives and Higher Party School.
Moscow State Institute for History and Archives was founded in 1930 as a center for the preparation of archivists. The institute established his own library in 1934. The collection includes books from the USSR Central Archive Office, as of old Slavonic manuscripts; about 800 Russian Type books (introduced 1708 by Peter the Great in place of Church Slavonic); lifetime editions and rare reprints of famous Russian scientists and public persons XVIII - XX centuries; unique book collections of public scientific organizations; Imperial Society of Devotees of Natural Science, Anthropology, and Ethnography; archive libraries; Ministry of Justice Moscow Archive; Ministry of External Affairs Moscow Archive etc. The collections referenced hereinabove shaped the stock of the Scientific Library Rare Books Department. Its collection contains at the present day over 27000 books, manuscripts and periodicals.
The Moscow Public University (MPU) founded in 1908 on the initiative of the eminent Russian patron of the arts, Alfons Shanyavsky, played a special role in Russian higher education and particularly in the history of Russian State University for the Humanities. In early XX century the collections of MPU started developing. In 1912 the university and its library occupied the building on Miusskaya sguare. The library stocks recruited private collections and donations of famous Russian educators: V. I. Amphiteatrov, A. I. Chuprov, A. L. Shanyavsky, brothers M. V. and S. V. Sabashnikov, V. E. Yakushkin, S. I. Shanin, P. I. Viktorov and others. Up to now this rare collections are point of pride for the Scientific Library.
The successors of the Moscow Public University Library were several organizations, the latest of them the Higher Party School.
The unique stocks are incorporated to a modern library which provides support in arts and social sciences research and resource linkage for students and faculty.
In early XX century Alfons Shanyavsky layed the basis for the integrality of humanities. He established a clear and principled framework for enlightened and moral education. At the present time the Scientific Library keeps these traditions alive and carries on them.