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The Davidson College Archives documents the college’s history and activities through records of permanent administrative and curricular value, including trustee and faculty committee minutes, presidential communications, records of student and faculty organizations and committees, and office and departmental records. College records are actively used by administrative departments, faculty, students, and outside researchers.
The manuscript collections supplement the archival documentation of the college’s activities. These include letters, scrapbooks, and papers recording the student experience, collections of papers documenting faculty and alumni contributions to scholarship, and collections of individuals and organizations that document the particularly close relationship between the college and the town of Davidson as well as the historical character of the town. These collections expand the research base of primary materials for curricular use and are used b students, faculty, town government staff, and outside scholars.
Rare Books Collections
The Smith Rare Book Room houses the library’s non-archival special collections, including the Cumming Map Collection, the Fugate Collection of First Editions, the Bruce Rogers Collection, the Golden Cockerel Press Collection,and publications from the Iron Mountain press. Additional items of note include the Arabic Bible of Omar ibn Sayyid, cuneiforms, early American Bibles, artist’s books, Diderot’s Encylopedie, as well as first editions of John Milton’s Paradise Lost, Charles Darwin’s The Descent of Man, and Patrick Gass’ journals from the Lewis and Clark expedition.
The music collection supports the academic needs of students and faculty across the disciplines with a focus on performance, theory and composition, music history and literature, and digital music studies. The library provides access to reference materials, sound recordings, scores, movies, books, and journals to meet the culturally diverse curriculum that spans the genres of world music, film music, American musical theatre, traditional music of the southern Appalachians, and music of Latin America. In addition to a unique denominational hymnals collection dating to the mid 1800s, collection strengths include soundtrack recording collections and scores of film music, and Latin American music.
The Davidson College Archives & Special Collections contain materials originally published in yearbooks, newspapers, and other Davidson College publications. You may encounter upsetting racist, oppressive, and outdated representations in these documents. They are included for historical accuracy and do not represent the views of the current Davidson College community, which honors the dignity of all persons and commits itself to a quest for truth and the building of a more just and humane future.