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A Guide to the Santa Clara University Archives: Introduction

A brief guide to the SCU records and images available in Archives & Special Collections

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Archives & Special Collections Access Policy

The original manuscript and personal papers collections, as well as the University Archives and photograph collections, are available for researchers to use in the Norman F. Martin, S.J. Reading Room, Monday - Friday, 10 am - 7 pm.  Access to the collections are by appointment only.  Please email to make an appointment.

Quick Links to Archives & Special Collections

What are the University Archives?

The University Archives collects institutional materials. Its primary mission is to preserve Santa Clara University’s rich cultural heritage and to support the teaching, learning, and research programs of Santa Clara University's faculty and students.This collection of administrative records, publications, photographs, maps, artifacts and ephemera, is focused on areas relevant to the University’s roles: as a Jesuit, Catholic university in the heart of Silicon Valley and as the oldest operating institution of higher learning in California.  To accurately interpret archival records it is important to understand their institutional context and the relationship between collections and the repository.

University records are the permanent historical records of Santa Clara University, from its founding in 1851, to the present. These records document the governance, administration and academic pursuits of the institution.  The University's administration is organized by departments that are responsible for the internal operations of their individual units.  The University Archives organizational structure mirrors that of the departments in charge of overseeing the campus, faculty, students, and the University's relations with the broader community. The University Archives organizes the records of these departments and assigns an alpha-numerical classification number to them, very much like a library book call number.  This helps us retrieve historical documents based upon the group that was responsible for their creation.  These documents are collected from the head of each department and unit, to maintain their provenance and avoid duplication of records.

To learn more about how Archives & Special Collections retains and organizes University Records, please follow the links below:

Guides to Using Archives

Research & Instruction Services Coordinator, Archives & Special Collections

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Kelci Baughman McDowell
Santa Clara University
University Library
500 El Camino Real
Santa Clara, CA 95053
(408) 554-4094