Established on paper in 1962 as the corporate archives of Tulane University, it wasn’t until 1968 that University Archives began to fulfill its mandate to collect, preserve, and administer the official records of the university. Since then, over 12,000 linear feet of material have been transferred to the archives from the university’s administrative and academic offices, including correspondence and office files, images, publications, theses and dissertations, non-current student records, and ephemeral vertical files. Additionally, donors have contributed historical memorabilia, such as alumni scrapbooks.
University Archives preserves records that are essential to the effective administration of the university. It also holds important resources for class papers, honors theses, master’s theses, doctoral dissertations, and research projects in innumerable fields. Digitized student registration ledgers, alumni lists, and yearbooks are invaluable tools for genealogists and descendants of alumni. The most substantial and comprehensive record groups held in University Archives contain correspondence and office files of the Board of Administrators (since 1845) and of the Office of the President, from William Preston Johnston (1884-1899) through Eamon Michael Kelly (1980-1998).
Selected noteworthy holdings include:
- Founding documents of the institution, including The Prospectus, the handwritten proposal to establish the Medical College of Louisiana in 1834; Letters of Donation by Paul Tulane (1882) and Josephine Louise Newcomb (1886); the Charter (1882); and other seminal documents - Record Group 46
- Minutes of the Faculty of the Medical College of Louisiana/University of Louisiana/Tulane University of Louisiana, 1834-1948 - Record Group 25
- Handwritten nineteenth-century student registration ledgers and published alumni lists
- Minutes, correspondence and office files of the Board of Administrators/Board of Tulane (since 1845) - Record Group 1
- Administrative records from the Office of the President, from William Preston Johnston (1884-1899) through Eamon Michael Kelly (1980-1998) - Record Group 2
- Honors, master’s and doctoral original hardbound theses beginning in 1896, with digital theses and dissertations beginning in 1952
- Course catalogs, football programs, yearbooks and student newspapers
- Extensive photograph collection in print, film, digitized, and born-digital formats
- Audiovisual materials, scrapbooks, photograph albums, and memorabilia