UCB Libraries


Recent Initiatives

2004 - Present
Archives/US National Park Service Partnership
In 2004, the Archives, University of Colorado at Boulder Libraries, was awarded a Save America’s Treasures Grant of $60,000.00 for a two-summer project to send a four-student team to Yellowstone National Park to archive the Park’s architectural and technical drawings. Coordinated by the USNPS Service Center’s Denver Technical Center, during the first summer, Archives students found, organized and identified drawings prior to sending them to Denver for scanning. The next summer’s team received the drawing from Denver and processed them into a collection, catalogued them and housed them at the Park’s new museum facility. More limited student archivist jobs have also been developed through the use of the Rocky Mountain Cooperative Ecosystem Studies Unit, of which UCB is a member. Archives students have been sent on 4, 7, and 10 week projects in Everglades, Glacier, and Yosemite National Parks in 2005 and 2006. A total of nine students have participated in these projects. The National Parks receive well trained student archivists to archive their huge backlog of drawings at great budgetary savings; the students receive professional experience, contacts and the unique experience of working in a National Park for an extended period; and the Archives gains better trained students in return. Three Archives student workers who have graduated from CU have found archival work with the USNPS at various Parks.


2000 - Present
The US Navy Japanese/Oriental Language School Archival Project
In the Spring of 2000, the Archives began an intensive effort to acquire collections and preserve the historical legacy of the US Navy Japanese/oriental Language School, located at the University of Colorado from 1942 to 1946. The School’s sensei were drawn from Nisei who were forced to relocate from the West Coast as a result of EO 9066 or were recruited from internment camps. Graduates of the school were commissioned in the Navy or Marines and were given decryption, interpretation, translation, POW interrogation or other intelligence duties during the Pacific War. Following the War, graduates took part in the surrender of bypassed Imperial Japanese units, the administration of POW camps in the Pacific and in China, and in the Occupation. Former Japanese Language Officers went into Academia in a wide range of Asian studies, into the US Foreign Service to lend their knowledge of Japan to US/Asia diplomacy, and into intelligence, entering Naval, Marine, and civilian intelligence agencies focused on Asia. In this way a 14 month course in Japanese produced a long-lasting legacy in US/Japan relations. The Archives produces a project newsletter, filled with the graduates’ and instructors’ stories. More than 100 collections have been promised, received, or processed. See the project webpage http://ucblibraries.colorado.edu/archives/collections/jlsp/index.htm.


1989 - Present
Rocky Flats Nuclear Weapons Plant Project & the Atomic West
The Archives, University of Colorado at Boulder Libraries, seeks to establish the definitive archive on Rocky Flats Nuclear Weapons Plant and nuclear issues in the West.  Ever since the acquisition of the Carl Johnson Papers, the papers of the Jefferson County Health official and critic of Rocky Flats, in 1989, the Archives has sought materials related to the Rocky Flats and western nuclear issues. During the next ten years, we made acquisitions of papers generated during the Cold War, from pacifists and ant-nuclear activists and organizations, such as the Rocky Mountain Peace and Justice Center Papers, Kathy Partridge Collection, Dr. John Cobb, Two Rivers Citizens’ Association, American Friends Service Committee - Rocky Flats Project, Mary Hey Papers, Chet Tchozewski Collection, Roy Young Collection andthe Morey Wolfson Collection. In following years, we were also able to enhance these activist collections with further activist and academic collections, like those of Edward Martell and Gilbert White.

     Of course, the Archives’ papers of Colorado representatives and senators hold information on Rocky Flats, such as the papers of Gordon Allott, Gary Hart, Tim Wirth, and David Skaggs.  These collections contain constituent files, campaign positions, policy statements and legislation. We also have the papers of the Colorado Freeze Voter, a political campaign to place a nuclear freeze into the political campaigns of the late 1980s.

     The Archives also has an ongoing interest in papers from the worker side of the issue, having acquired the United Steelworkers of America, Subdistrict #6, the Oil, Chemical and Atomic Workers, the Joe Goldfield Papers, and the James Stone Papers. We welcome donations from other former Rocky Flats workers.

     After the closure of Rocky Flats, the facility was “cleaned up”, demolished, decontaminated, and turned into a wildlife sanctuary, along the lines of the Rocky Mountain Arsenal. The environmental cleanup attracted the attention of a number of citizens groups, many of which have recently donated their papers to the Archives: The Environmental Information Center, the Rocky Flats Coalition of Local Governments, the Rocky Flats Citizen’s Advisory Board, Hildegard Hix. LeRoy Moore, of The Rocky Mountain Peace and Justice Center, continues to donate its more current files, as well.

     The Archives has also received the offer of the holdings of the entire Rocky Flats Reading Room, once located at Rocky Flats and at Front Range Community College. This large holding contains 600 linear feet of documents including Colorado and federal reports.

     Lastly, the Archives is interested in the Atomic West and has acquired papers relating to the High Level Nuclear Waste Repository in Yucca Mountain, New Mexico. We also hold the research collection for Pulitzer Prize winner Eileen Welsome’s book, Plutonium Files, as well as papers of Dr. James Stebbings. The Rocky Flats Reading Room material also contains documents relating to nuclear facilities across the West.