Established by an Act of the First Territorial Legislature on November 7, 1864, the Arizona Historical Society (AHS) is Arizona’s oldest historical agency. Collections are housed in AHS museum facilities throughout the state, numbering in excess of three million objects. The Libraries & Archives Division of the Arizona Historical Society collects published and unpublished material of enduring historical value that allows researchers to explore Arizona’s economic, political, social, and cultural heritage. Formats include manuscripts, photographs, diaries, letters, oral histories, sound recordings, moving images, microfilm, maps, books, and digital files.
The Center for Creative Photography, University of Arizona, is recognized as one of the world’s finest academic art museums and study centers for the history of photography. The Center opened in 1975, beginning with the archives of five living master photographers—Ansel Adams, Wynn Bullock, Harry Callahan, Aaron Siskind, and Frederick Sommer. Today, the collection has grown to include 270 archival collections with over 8 million objects. Among these are some of the most recognizable names in 20th century North American photography. In addition to whole archival collections the Center actively acquires individual fine print photographs by modern and contemporary photographers, as well as books, journals, exhibition and auction catalogs, and an extensive oral history collection. The combined art, archival, and research collections at the Center provide an unparalleled resource for research, exhibitions, loans, and traveling exhibitions.
In 1937, the scientific study of tree-rings in America was formalized by the creation of the Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research (LTRR) here at the University of Arizona in Tucson. The Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research (LTRR) at the University of Arizona currently houses approximately 2,000,000 wood research specimens and their associated records, photographs, analyses, etc. As the oldest dendrochronology laboratory in world, the LTRR’s collections are unparalleled in size and diversity. The continuously expanding multi-taxon collection contains records of life on earth that are an irreplaceable source of biological and human information, built over the past 100 years.
Special Collections serves the University of Arizona Libraries as the holder of primary research materials chiefly in the fields of Literature, Arizona and Southwestern History, and the Sciences. Gathered here too are important and substantial collections relating to the lands and peoples of Arizona, New Mexico and Sonora, Mexico. Established in 1958, Special Collections includes rare books, literature, printed materials, manuscript collections, photographs and maps that contribute to the interdisciplinary investigations of researchers, scholars and citizens from Arizona and beyond.
The Western Archaeological and Conservation Center (WACC) is dedicated to the preservation and study of museum collections within the Intermountain Region of the National Park Service. The Museum Services Program at WACC provides expertise in professional conservation, museum, archival, and library management assistance to park staff and partners. Staff here curates 14.5 million objects and archives on behalf of over 70 parks, preserving this valuable part of America’s heritage and making it accessible for research.