Tag Archives: University Archives

Special Collections and University Archives Celebrates Two Years of Contributing Finding Aids to the OAC

February 2014, marked our second anniversary of contributing finding aids to the Online Archive of California (OAC). We are excited about the fact that in a little over two years we have increased our finding aids from 0 to 120, and we have seen an incremental increase in our visitor usage. While we have a few collections in our growing areas of Film and Television (6 collections) and Politics (3 collections), most of the materials we have processed fall within our 3 main collecting areas:

1. The University Archives (95 collections)

2. The Malibu Historical Collection (10 collections)

3. The Churches of Christ Heritage Center (6 collections)

With the processing of these materials, we have been able to track visitor usage and are pleased to see that more and more people are using our finding aids to access information. During our first month of operation, we had 14 unique visitors look at our finding aids; however, by the end of 2012, we increased to an average of 91 unique visitors per month. By 2013, our numbers jumped to an average of 384, and now, just within the first three months of 2014, we’ve average 425 unique viewers each month.  In addition, usage in the reading room has increased as well.

For any given month, we have been able to monitor such interesting things as what finding aids are most popular, how long researchers spent looking at our finding aids, and what keywords did researchers use to find our materials. Some of the more popular finding aids as of late include the Pepperdine College Freedom Forum Records with 56 views, the Chuck Waters Papers with 46 views, and the Michael D. (Micky) Moore Papers with 37 views.  About 80% of researchers have spent 30 minutes or less looking at a particular finding aid and some popular keywords include “Malibu” and “Pepperdine.”  In addition, we can tell what day is most popular (this month it’s been Sunday) and where researchers reside (32% of our recent viewers reside in Malibu, followed by 20.4% in Houston, and 9.6% in Seattle). Researchers from such countries as China, Ukraine, France, Canada, India, Ireland, and Brazil have looked at our finding aids. Interestingly enough, we can also tell that 1:00 a.m. appears to be a popular search time.

Needless to say, all of this would not be possible without the hard work of our dedicated team. A most sincere thanks to everyone who has participated in the processing of these 120 finding aids. To view our finding aids please click here. If you are interested in learning more about our collections, please contact katie.richardson@pepperdine.edu or (310) 506-4323.

Introducing the Alumni Memories digital collection

Bernice Pitts receiving her degree at GPC from President Tiner

Bernice Pitts receiving her degree at GPC from President Tiner

Pepperdine University Libraries is pleased to announce the launch of the Alumni Memories Collection, a new digital collection designed to honor the lives of our alumni and the special bond they’ve formed with Pepperdine University. The collection, freely accessible online, is composed of photographs, memorabilia, documents, scrapbooks, correspondence, and other materials donated to Pepperdine University Libraries by alumni of George Pepperdine College and Pepperdine University. The items in this collection, arranged by theme or donor, strive to capture the “Pepperdine experience” while providing a glimpse into the lives of the men and women that call Pepperdine their alma mater.

Christmas Card sent to the Pitts from M. Norvel Young and Family

Christmas Card sent to the Pitts from M. Norvel Young and Family

The flagship donation for the Alumni Memories Collection comes to us from Bernice M. (Carr) Pitts (’49), who provides numerous photographs and documents related to the life she shared with her husband, Carroll Pitts, Jr. (’54). Bernice and Carroll were the first African-American students to live in Normandie Village, the married student housing complex on the original Los Angeles campus of George Pepperdine College. In addition to photos of campus, the collection includes photos and clippings related to the Pitts family, Churches of Christ history in Southern California, and the Pitts’ ongoing relationship with fellow GPC alumnus Los Angeles County Supervisor Kenneth Hahn.

Bernice and Carroll Pitts receive a commemorative certificate from L.A. County Supervisor Kenneth Hahn in 1982

Bernice and Carroll Pitts receive a commemorative certificate from L.A. County Supervisor Kenneth Hahn in 1982

Carroll Pitts, Jr. also earned an M.A. in Religion from Pepperdine College in 1969, producing his thesis A Critical Study of Civil Rights Practices, Attitudes and Responsibilities in Churches of Christ. Throughout his career, Carroll specialized in church administration and personal evangelism, serving as the Minister of the Normandie Church of Christ in Los Angeles for over two decades. Carroll and Bernice traveled widely in support of Christian education, conducting workshops and gospel meetings in places as diverse as South Africa, Egypt, Rome, London, and Haiti. Carroll also taught classes at the annual Pepperdine Bible Lectures in addition to teaching part-time in Pepperdine University’s Religion Division. He passed in 1987. We are very grateful to Bernice for this donation, which we hope will honor his memory and celebrate the achievements they made together through a life devoted to God and Christian education.

If you are an alumnus interested in donating materials to this collection, please contact our Archivist, Katie Richardson at (310) 506-4323 or Katie.Richardson@pepperdine.edu.

Special Collections Intern Processes Two Collections

Kendal Copeland, a junior at Pepperdine, interned in Special Collections and University Archives during the fall semester. Kendal was responsible for enhancing the finding aid of the Pepperdine University Athletics Records and the Pepperdine College Freedom Forum Records. She described both collections in greater detail, adding folder level description to Archivists’ Toolkit and updating the finding aids. Kendal had this to say about her experience interning in the department:

football60004This semester I had the opportunity to intern in Special Collections and University Archives. The experience was a lot of fun, interesting, and educational. I learned all about the hard work that goes into maintaining, organizing, and preserving a collection.I worked on two collections; the Pepperdine University Athletics Records and the Pepperdine Freedom Forum Records.

While processing the athletics records, I was able to see the evolution of sports at Pepperdine from the late 1930’s to the present. Through articles, programs, newspaper clippings, videos, and photographs I had the opportunity to see how sports became more integrated. In addition, I was able to see the progress of women athletes over the years.

One thing I really enjoyed was being able to read and look at photos of the Pepperdine football team from its beginning to end (1946-1961).  I was even able to box a 1946 football lettermen jacket. The evolution of uniforms and how much they have changed was fun to see. I think it was for the best that men’s basketball uniforms have evolved the way they have.

A photograph I found very interesting was of a women’s football team here at Pepperdine. The caption on the back says “Women’s Football, 1960.”

football60003When I finished working on the athletics records, I processed a small collection on the Pepperdine College Freedom Forums. The Pepperdine College Freedom Forum was a three day seminar on promoting and defending American values co-sponsored by Pepperdine College and the National Education Program held annually on campus from 1959 to 1971. I was amazed at the amount of guest speakers over the years that came out to the forums. It was very insightful to read the speeches because I got a chance in a small way to experience what times were like during that time period.

For further information about viewing the collections or for information on the types of internships available with Special Collections and University Archives please contact Katie Richardson at katie.richardson@pepperdine.edu

Happy World Day for Audiovisual Heritage!

Here’s something that you may not have known: this Sunday, October 27th, is World Day for Audiovisual Heritage. And why should you care? While you may be hard pressed to find a Happy World Day for Audiovisual Heritage card at the Hallmark store, it speaks to a very important issue. Experts estimate that we have only 10 to 15 years left to digitize the wealth of content on analog audiovisual media—such as film, reel-to-reel tape, and even VHS—dating to the mid to late 20th century. This material constitutes an indispensable complement to the written record of our collective world history, and it is at risk of permanent loss due to the vulnerability of these media to decay, damage, and playback obsolescence.

The United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) launched the World Day for Audiovisual Heritage in 2005 in order to acknowledge the importance of audiovisual recordings and raise general awareness of the need for urgent measures to be taken to preserve them.

Pepperdine University Libraries has responded to this charge by partnering with the California Audiovisual Preservation Project, an initiative of the California Preservation Program that provides digitization and access services for historic California audiovisual recordings. So far, more than two dozen films, reel-to-reel tapes, and other vulnerable recordings in our Special Collections and University Archives have been digitized for preservation purposes through this collaboration. These recordings, such as this recently digitized speech by Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor at the 1985 Pepperdine Law School Dinner, are now available in our Pepperdine Digital Collections.

Please visit the links above to discover how you can contribute to the preservation of the world’s audiovisual heritage.

Today is Constitution Day. Take the Quiz!

Today is Constitution Day, the 226th anniversary of the signing of the U.S. Constitution. It’s a day dedicated to the education and celebration of one of our nation’s principal founding documents. So, how much do you know about the U.S. Constitution? For example, did the Senate initially want the Constitution to refer to the U.S. President as “His Highness the President of the United States of America and Protector of their Liberties”? Find out when you take the Washington Post Constitution Day Quiz.

You can also celebrate Constitution Day by visiting Pepperdine University’s Payson Library, where rare Colonial documents are currently housed in our Special Collections Reading Room (appointments recommended). Featured in the recent library exhibit, “Becoming America: An Exhibition of Colonial Documents,” the materials available for browsing span from 1686 to 1781 and represent the cultural, philosophical, and political atmosphere leading up to and during the Revolutionary War (see image above). Although the exhibit has ended, these priceless Colonial-era documents are currently on loan to Payson Library from Pepperdine alumnus and attorney Michael J. Marlatt (JD ’84).

Happy Constitution Day!

Pepperdine Students Conclude Special Collections Internship

Austin McElrath, Andrea Oates, and Sarah Dannemiller recently concluded their 15-week, for-credit internship during the spring 2013 semester.

Austin processed and created a finding aid for the Elinor Oswald Collection of Southern California Tourism Ephemera. The collection comprises a wide variety of tourist ephemera relating to Elinor Oswald’s professional career as a tour guide in the Southern California area between 1968 and 2009. The project included arranging and describing materials, writing a finding aid, and adding descriptive information to Archivists’ Toolkit. The finding aid is online and viewable by clicking here.

Andrea also processed and created a finding aid for a collection. She processed the John D. Nicks Jr. Papers. Nicks was a former professor, dean of the business school, vice president of academic affairs, and vice president of development at Pepperdine University from the 1970s to the 1990s. The project included arranging and describing materials, writing a finding aid, and adding descriptive information to Archivists’ Toolkit. The finding aid is now online and viewable by clicking here.

Sarah worked on two projects during the course of her internship. She enhanced the finding aid for the M. Norvel and Helen Young Papers. The Young papers are our single largest collection at 225.59 linear feet. Sarah described the collection in greater detail, adding folder level description to Archivists’ Toolkit and updating the finding aid. She also assisted the archivist with exhibit preparation for Bible Lectures. Sarah selected Churches of Christ hymnals to display and researched the hymnals to make captions.

Sarah had this to say about her internship experience in Special Collections:

After reflecting upon my experience as an intern I realized how I had underestimated the importance of an archivist’s work and also the amount of time that goes into a project. I thought that I had a legitimate reason as to why I should be selected to do this internship. I wrote a paper for my HIST 200 class that required the use of the university’s archives. I spent hours flipping through folders and papers that had little relevance to my research in order to find the “jackpot.” I thought there needed to be more organization and better detailed finding aids so I wasn’t spending all my precious research time flipping through folders. However, once I was assigned to creating a finding aid and expanding it I realized just how much time it took to create the bare minimum. I came to appreciate and to respect the time and effort that archivists put into making materials available for researchers, regardless of how much detail they put into the finding aids.

Not only did I gain a new appreciation for archival work but I also enjoyed the creative aspect of it. I was lucky enough to be interning at the same time that an exhibit for Pepperdine’s Bible Lectures was being set up. As a member of the Churches of Christ, the opportunity was great not just for my career but also for my spiritual involvement. I was excited to learn about my own tradition’s history and through what seemed like a personally edifying research process, felt like I was able to give something back to my church family. I was able to use my research skills as a historian and my creative capabilities to contribute something to an event that brings many Christians together in a spirit of unification and fellowship.

Sarah standing in front of the exhibit case she worked on.

For further questions about internships or Special Collections and University Archives holdings please contact Katie Richardson at katie.richardson@pepperdine.edu or (310)506-4323.

When the President came to Pepperdine: Today’s featured digital object

President Gerald Ford (right) greets actor John Wayne, with benefactor Richard Seaver (center)

On Founder’s Day, September 20, 1975, as Pepperdine University’s Malibu campus began its fourth year of activity, the university was honored by an official visit from the President of the United States, Gerald R. Ford. This was the first time a sitting President had visited Pepperdine, a milestone indicative of both the prestige the university had gained nationally and the ties its administration held with the Republican Party. The day was marked by two building dedications on the rapidly growing campus, both of which featured remarks by President Ford. A VIP brunch ceremony dedicated the Brock House, home to the university president, and this was followed by a public gathering of over 18,000 attendees to witness the dedication of the Firestone Fieldhouse, the campus’ athletics facility. Newly discovered and digitized, the audio recording of President Ford’s dedication of the Firestone Fieldhouse is now available online in our Historic Sound Recordings collection.

The 18,000 strong crowd at the Firestone Fieldhouse dedication, 1975

In addition to a twenty-minute speech by President Ford (on the important role of independent universities and free enterprise in the national education system), the recording also features the pomp and ritual particular to that era, including Pat Boone singing the national anthem and John Wayne leading a recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance.

Although it may not be apparent in this recording, President Ford’s visit to Pepperdine occurred during a period of heightened anxiety for both the president and the university. Just two weeks earlier, Squeaky Fromme, a follower of Charles Manson, had attempted to assassinate President Ford in Sacramento (the gun failed to discharge). Security at Pepperdine was intense and there were no incidents; however, just two days later, Sara Jane Moore fired on the president in San Francisco in a second failed attempt. Meanwhile, four days before President Ford was to arrive at Pepperdine, M. Norvel Young, Chancellor of Pepperdine University, crashed his car into another vehicle on the Pacific Coast Highway, causing the death of two motorists. The shadow of this tragedy nearly derailed the Presidential visit, but the event continued as planned.

In addition to listening to the recording, you can also view photographs of the day’s events. Enjoy.

It’s a WRAP: NHPRC Funded Project Concludes

March 31, 2013, concluded the eighteen month NHPRC funded project “Preserving the Past, Preparing, for the Future: Building Sustainable Archival Collections.” During the project, 1,370 linear feet of materials were processed comprising 103 collections. The finding aids for the collections can be accessed through the Online Archive of California.

Over the course of the grant, we had many people pitch in to get things done. Three student workers: Jenna Fry, Lindsey Gant, and Catie Golitzin; four interns: Alexandra Mogan, Austin McElrath, Andrea Oates, and Sarah Dannemiller; one cataloger: Casey Ann Mitchell; a graduate student assistant: Jessica Geiser; and three archivists: Jamie Henricks, Melissa Nykanen, and Katie Richardson all put in time to make sure the grant was a success. In addition to having collections organized following national standards and best practices, local policies were established in the archives to accession and maintain new collections going forward.

Collections processed and made available because of the grant:

1984 Olympics Collection

Associated Women for Pepperdine Records

Banowsky (William S.) Papers

Batchelder (Ronald W.) Papers

Casmir (Fred L.) Grade Books

Churches of Christ Church Programs and Weekly Bulletins

Crest Associates Records

Davenport (David) Papers

Derrick (Hubert G.) Papers

Fetzer (Joel S.) Papers

George Pepperdine College Records

Goff (Ivan) Collection of Television Scripts

Hahn (Kenneth) Collection

Herschensohn (Bruce) Papers

Holland (Harold E.) Papers

Hornbaker (Larry D.) Papers

Hughes (Norman) Papers

Johnson (B. Lamar) Papers

Kallis (Stanley M.) Scripts

Lovell (James L.) Papers

MacNair (C. Richard) Papers

Malibooz Collection

Malibu Property Ownership Record Books and Real Estate Property Indexes

Marowitz (Charles) Collection of the Malibu Stage Company

McCaleb (J.M.) Papers

Metcalf (Edwards H.) Papers

Miller (Donald V.) Papers

Moore (James C.) Papers

Morris M. Womack Research Materials on J.P. Sanders

National School Safety Center Records

Penrod (James I.) Papers

Pepperdine Ambassadors Council Records

Pepperdine Associates Records

Pepperdine Bible Lectures Collection

Pepperdine College Freedom Forum Records

Pepperdine (George) Family Papers

Pepperdine University Accreditation Collection

Pepperdine University Admissions and Enrollment Collection

Pepperdine University Alumni Association Records

Pepperdine University Annual Reports

Pepperdine University Archives Audiovisual Collection

Pepperdine University Archives Individual Files

Pepperdine University Archives Individual Photograph Files

Pepperdine University Archives Photographs, Negatives, and Slides

Pepperdine University Archives Publications

Pepperdine University Archives Subject Files

Pepperdine University Athletics Records

Pepperdine University Board of Regents Records

Pepperdine University Budget and Finance Collection

Pepperdine University Bulletins, Catalogs and Schedule of Classes

Pepperdine University Campaigns and Fundraising Collection

Pepperdine University Campus Dedications Collection

Pepperdine University Commencement Collection

Pepperdine University Computing Collection

Pepperdine University Convocations, Founder’s Day and Presidential Inaugurations collection

Pepperdine University Credits Committee Records

Pepperdine University Due Process Committee (DPC) Deliberations Records

Pepperdine University Faculty Collection

Pepperdine University Graduate School of Education and Psychology Records

Pepperdine University Graziadio School of Business and Management Records

Pepperdine University International Programs Records

Pepperdine University Libraries Records

Pepperdine University Management Committee (UMC) Records

Pepperdine University Office of Public Affairs Records

Pepperdine University Office of the Provost, Nancy Magnusson Fagan Records

Pepperdine University Office of the Provost, Steven S. Lemley Records

Pepperdine University Office of the Provost, William B. Adrian Records

Pepperdine University Operations Planning Committee (OPS) Records

Pepperdine University Performing and Fine Arts Collection

Pepperdine University Planning Committee (UPC) Records

Pepperdine University Plaques

Pepperdine University Policy Committee (UPOL) Records

Pepperdine University Real Estate Records

Pepperdine University School of Continuing Education Records

Pepperdine University School of Law Records

Pepperdine University School of Professional Studies and Los Angeles Campus Collection

Pepperdine University School of Public Policy Records

Pepperdine University Seaver College Records

Pepperdine University Speeches Collection

Pepperdine University Student Life Collection

Pepperdine University Women’s Organizations Collection

Pullias (Earl Vivon) Papers

Restoration Movement Publications

Rindge and Adamson family papers

The Roots of American Order Television Adaptation Proposal

Sanders (J.P.) Sermons

Seaver Academic Council Records

Seaver (Blanche Ebert and Frank R.) Papers

Seaver College Faculty Advisory Committee (FAC) Records

Sigmon (Loyd C.) Papers

Southern California Youth Citizenship Seminar Records

Student Government Association (SGA) Records

Thomas (Robert (Bob)) Papers

Tiner (Hugh M.) Papers

Tyler Ecology Award Records

University Academic Council Records

Wagner (Joseph) Papers

Webster Family Papers

White (Howard A.) Papers

Williams (Hanson A., Jr.) Collection of Photographs and Negatives

Wilson (John F.) Papers

Young (M. Norvel and Helen) Papers

Zeta Kappa Collection









Some of the member of the NHPRC team: Casey Ann Mitchell, Jessica Geiser, Katie Richardson, Sarah Dannemiller, Lindsey Gant, and Jamie Henricks)

For questions about the collections or the project please contact Katie Richardson at katie.richardson@pepperdine.edu or (310) 506-4323.


Lindsey Gant Selected as Library Outstanding Student Worker of the Year!

Lindsey Gant has worked in the library for the past two years. This year, she was not only selected as the Library Student Worker of the Year but she was also a finalist for Outstanding Student Worker for the entire university! Lindsey switched from working in the Digital Initiatives Department to working in Special Collections and University Archives last fall and has been a huge help.










(Lindsey with her award and fancy chocolates!)

Lindsey has worked on many important projects for us. We received a large grant from NHPRC to organize, describe, and make available our archival collections to students, faculty, staff, and the community. Lindsey has helped by assisting members of the Special Collections team with creating finding aids for at least eighteen collections. These finding aids are published online through the Online Archive of California.

Collections that Lindsey has worked on include:

Churches of Christ Church Programs and Weekly Bulletins 1948-1968

Fetzer (Joel S.) Papers 1983-2012

George Pepperdine College Records 1937-1970s

Morris M. Womack Research Materials on J.P. Sanders 1970s-1980s

Pepperdine University Accreditation Collection 1953-1993

Pepperdine University Archives Publications

Pepperdine University Bulletins, Catalogs and Schedule of Classes 1937-2012

Pepperdine University Convocations, Founder’s Day and Presidential Inaugurations collection 1958-2006

Pepperdine University Credits Committee Records 1967-1996

Pepperdine University Graziadio School of Business and Management Records 1968-2013

Pepperdine University Management Committee (UMC) Records 1992-2008

Pepperdine University Operations Planning Committee (OPS) Records 1974-1987

Pepperdine University Policy Committee (UPOL) Records 1983-1992

Pepperdine University School of Law Records 1969-2013

Pepperdine University School of Public Policy Records 1996-2013

Sanders (J.P.) Sermons 1973-1986

Sigmon (Loyd C.) Papers 1945-2008

Southern California Youth Citizenship Seminar Records 1983-2005

Lindsey also played a key role in preparing for our “Becoming America: An Exhibition of Colonial Documents” exhibit which was on display from October, 2012 to April, 2013. She did research for captions and helped with the layout of the materials.

She researched four of our Pepperdine audio recordings which needed to be digitized. She searched through old issues of the Graphic to locate information regarding their context to write about their significance. We submitted her descriptions to the California Audiovisual Preservation Project which digitizes recordings with statewide significance. All four recordings were selected for digitization based on Lindsey’s research, ability to make a strong case for their statewide significance, and need for preservation.

Lindsey also attended the 7th annual Los Angeles Archives Bazaar in October 2012. She served as a representative for our department answering questions about our collections and services that we provide.

(Lindsey and Katie Richardson exhibit some of the materials from Special Collections and University Archives at the Archives Bazaar)

Lindsey has been a wonderful employee. She has all of the qualities we look for in an amazing student worker. She is always on time, friendly, reliable, detail-oriented, flexible, and an excellent writer. She has a strong desire to preserve history for future generations and is passionate about what our department does.  If you see Lindsey around campus, please congratulate her on this award!

For questions about Special Collections and University Archives or job opportunities in the department, please contact Katie Richardson at katie.richardson@pepperdine.edu

Special Collections Welcomes Three Pepperdine Student Interns!

Austin McElrath, Andrea Oates, and Sarah Dannemiller will join the Special Collections team for a 15-week, for-credit internship during the spring 2013 semester.

Austin is a sophomore majoring in Philosophy and will be processing and creating a finding aid for the Elinor Oswald Collection of Los Angeles Tourism Ephemera. The collection comprises a wide variety of tourist ephemera relating to Elinor Oswald’s professional career as a tour guide in the Southern California area between 1968 and 2009. The project includes arranging and describing materials, writing a finding aid, adding descriptive information to Archivists’ Toolkit, and assisting the archivist with selecting items for an upcoming exhibit.

Andrea is a senior majoring in History and will be processing and creating a finding aid for the John D. Nick Papers. Nicks was a former professor, dean of the business school, vice president of academic affairs, and vice president of development at Pepperdine University from the 1970s to the 1990s. The project includes arranging and describing materials, writing a finding aid, adding descriptive information to Archivists’ Toolkit, and assisting the archivist with selecting items for digitization.

Sarah is a junior majoring in History and will be enhancing the finding aid for the M. Norvel and Helen Young Papers. The Young papers are our single largest collection at 225.59 linear feet. Sarah will describe the collection in greater detail, adding folder level description to Archivists’ Toolkit and updating the finding aid. She will also assist the archivist with selecting items for digitization or an exhibit.

For further questions about internships or Special Collections and University Archives please contact Katie Richardson at katie.richardson@pepperdine.edu or (310)506-4323.