Skip to main content

Collection Emphasis

The Archives & Special Collections (A&SC), located on the third floor east side of the University Libraries, is responsible for collecting, organizing and preserving primary and secondary research materials. Emphasis is focused on historical materials that pertain to the University of South Dakota, as well as items relating to the history of South Dakota (especially Clay, Yankton and Union counties), Great Plains history, Native American history and the history of stringed instruments in the violin family.

A&SC supports research and scholarship by making available and encouraging the use of its collections by researchers, students and the community at large. The collections include manuscripts, books, serials, maps, photographs, moving images and sound recordings. Donation is the primary method of acquisition, and the A&SC accepts materials that fall within the stated collecting guidelines.

Guides to the Collections - Definitions

Inventory Lists

  • Guides to unprocessed collections.
  • Provide box numbers and itemized folder information.
  • Do not describe everything within the folders, but give a general idea of folder material.
  • Available in print format at the A&SC office, with a few of the inventory lists for the larger collections posted on the A&SC website.

Finding Aids

  • Guides to processed collections.
  • More thorough than inventory lists, providing a scope and content note that gives a detailed description of the collection and describes its organization.
  • Often include a historical or biographical note about the subject of the collection.
  • List related resources that may be useful to researchers.
  • A processed collection is divided into series, which are organized groupings of similar types of material. Finding aids describe each series while the box list section of the finding aid details the contents of the series, often to the folder level.
  • Available in print format at the A&SC office and the A&SC website: Richardson Collections and USD Archives.

Reference and Instruction Services

Reference and Research: The staff of the Archives & Special Collections is available to answer reference questions and provide research assistance.

For Faculty: The Archives & Special Collections staff is available to provide orientations and instruction related to assignments using materials in the Archives & Special Collections. Likewise staff can provide materials for posting on D2L.

For the Community: The staff of the Archives & Special Collections is available to make presentations centered on our collections to community groups such as schools, community organizations and religious groups.


Name Department & Office Contact
Diane Frigge
  • Senior Librarian
I D Weeks Library 130
Sarah Hanson-Pareek
  • Curator - Digital Projects
I D Weeks Library 305
Doris Peterson
  • Librarian
I D Weeks Library 305
Michael Seminara
  • Archivist/Special Collections Librarian
I D Weeks Library 305A