Primary research materials such as manuscripts and archival records are essential resources for researchers, writers, and historians. Manuscript materials in Special Collections include correspondence, diaries, financial records, reports, membership rosters, bylaws, minutes, subject files, architectural drawings, and legal papers that document an individual's life or career; environmental, cultural, social, and fraternal organizations; and businesses. Subjects represented in the collection include agriculture and land use, education, ethnicity and race, gaming, Native Americans, Lake Tahoe, literary manuscripts of Nevada authors, lumbering, and mining, in the geographic areas of Nevada north of Goldfield, the Great Basin region, Lake Tahoe, and California east of the crest of the Sierra Nevada Mountains.
All manuscript materials acquired by the Special Collections Department are treated with extreme care and preserved in technologically advanced storage enclosures. This is necessary because of the fragility and instability of some paper materials which are subject to deterioration if exposed to extreme, unstable environmental conditions or rough handling. Manuscripts are stored in acid-free folders and boxes that prevent harmful woodpulp acids from migrating into and possibly destroying valuable documents.
Storage & Access
All materials in the Special Collections Department are housed in a security monitored storage area. There is no public access to this area and all materials are paged. Readers fill out application forms before they are allowed to use collections.
Manuscripts are cataloged into the University Library's online catalog and into a national database of information about archival and manuscript materials. Subject information and certain collection guides can also be browsed and searched on the department's Web site. Access is by subject, collections are further accessed by collection guides and registers that provide more detailed information about the creator or collector and the contents of the collection.
Items are actively sought from individuals, businesses, and other groups that have an interest in having their historically significant materials preserved for posterity and made available for research and scholarly use. Please contact Jacque Sundstrand (contact info at the bottom of the page).