SCSU At 150: Archives Department Collecting History
ST. CLOUD -- St. Cloud State University continues to celebrate its 150th anniversary. Once a month archivist Tom Steman comes on the News @ Noon Show to talk about the school's history.
Tuesday the topic was the archives department. He says the department wasn't established until 1977. They've been collecting items of historical nature in a variety of ways ever since then.
How this material arrived at archives from an individual, what the journey was for that material, how did it finally end up in archives? Maybe it was taken out of a dumpster. When it finally gets to archives I go, well you're safe here.
He says a majority of the archives are records, but they also have a few interesting objects in their collection.
One of my favorites is the 1990s Husky mascot. I had someone from admissions bring it to me in a gigantic red duffle bag, and I was like "wow that is fantastic."
SCSU has nearly 1,500 volumes of rare books. They have 120 oral histories from central Minnesota World War II veterans. And, they have a lot of material from author Sinclair Lewis, including the letters he wrote to his mistress Marcella Powers from 1939 to 1947.
About 80 percent of the people who use the archives department have an affiliation with SCSU.
The SCSU archives department has 4,500 linear feet of space. It is a closed stack so no one except staff can take materials off the shelf. The archives are kept in a temperature and humidity controlled environment.
SCSU will wrap-up the year-long sesquicentennial celebration in September.