Does my character need a letter? An alumnus friend? An introduction from a current fellow or professor? Would he get a pass? Would it matter that he is not an alumnus in the usual sense (was there a distinction, social or practical, between an external BA and a matriculated one)? Would he need to use gloves to handle the manuscripts? Would he be allowed to take pencil notes? Was there any security check?
Can anybody point me in the direction of something that would help? I've looked, as I say, at the university site itself; I've searched Googlebooks and found interesting memoir and biography material, but mostly in regard to OU students or sometimes people on Fulbrights, etc. Nothing I found speaks to the history of the entrance rules or procedures. Before I'm driven to make up something vaguely plausible, I'd like to take another shot at finding facts.