Volunteers Needed: Crowdsourced Special Collections or University Archives Histories’ Web Review

This project will gather data about the current state of institutional web-available histories of Special Collections and University Archives. As a result of this data collection, the Archival History Section will be able to promote the writing of online archival histories of research and academic institutions, including archives and special collections in college and university libraries.


The Crowdsourced Special Collections and/or University Archives Histories’ Web Review seeks to assess the landscape of archival and special collection library history in the United States, with a particular focus on histories of university archives and special collection libraries available on the web. Contributors to this project — YOU, the readers of Archival History News — can assist by checking particular institutions’ websites for specific webpages devoted to the history of either Special Collections or University Archives, and reporting that information in a Google Form, created by the editorial team at Archival History News.

In the first phase of the project, the 351 schools in the NCAA Division I were reviewed without crowdsourcing. Now, a survey of the 305 NCAA Division II schools needs YOUR ASSISTANCE. It will be crucial to complete the review by the end of 2019, in order for the data to remain fresh and up-to-date, given changes to urls on the internet. A third phase will review the websites from the 450 NCAA Division III schools.

Please contribute your time to this important project by accessing the Google Form, where further instructions are provided:

Crowdsourced Special Collections and/or University Archives Histories’ Web Review


Disclaimer: This web review is produced with the support of the Archival History Section of the Society of American Archivists [SAA]. It is neither sponsored by nor affiliated with the NCAA. The classification is simply used to generate the list of schools.


Sample Collection Data, through January 2019

Webpages related to the institutional histories of Special Collections and University Archives have been identified in about 8-10% of the NCAA Division I schools. Examples have been compiled and organized below according to the complexity of the histories and the most identifiable date of that institutional repository’s creation, as stated within the linked webpages.

MULTI-PAGE Histories of Special Collections libraries and/or University Archives

1767
Special Collections of the Brown University Library: A History and Guide, Revised Web Edition

ca. 1824-1831
“Special Collections at Georgetown: A Brief History,” Georgetown University

1954
History of the Clarke Historical Library, Central Michigan University


SINGLE-PAGE Histories of Special Collections libraries and/or University Archives

ca. 1890
Baptist Historical Collection, Special Collections and Archives, Furman University

1904
History of the John Carter Brown Library, Brown University

1905
History of The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley

1913
History of the Moorland Foundation and the Moorland Spingarn Research Center at Howard University

1931
History of Special Collections and University Archives: University of Massachusetts-Amherst

1936
History of Special Collections and University Archives, University of Maryland-College Park libraries

1945
History of the W.S. Hoole Special Collections Library, University of Alabama

1956-1957
History of the University Archives, Brigham Young University
History of the L. Tom Perry Special Collections, Brigham Young University

1958
History of the Reynolds-Finley Historical Library, University of Alabama at Birmingham

1965
History of Archives and Special Collections, University of Connecticut

1967
History of Special Collections, University of Las Vegas

1968
History of the Northwest Ohio-Great Lakes Research Center / Center for Archival Collections, Bowling Green State University

1978
History: Archives of Appalachia, Sherrod Library, East Tennessee State Library

1970s-1990s
Special Collections & Archives, Oviatt Library, California State University, Northridge

1991-1992
History: Southern Polytechnic State University Archives and Special Collections / Kennesaw State University Archives

1993
The History of the Albert Gore Research Center, Middle Tennessee State University


STUB Histories of Special Collections libraries and/or University Archives (often included in “About” webpages)

1960
Rev. J. Clayton Murray, S.J. Archives, Canisius College

1967
Special Collections Department, Kansas State University

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