These collections consist of materials from the College Archives relating to the institution's early history, but also include items from our Manuscript Collection, such as the journals of the naturalist John Burroughs, and from our Music Library's collection of programs from concerts and other events.
It should be noted that the Vassar College Archives & Special Collections Library houses not only college records, but also an extensive rare book collection as well as manuscript material, much of which relates to the Hudson Valley. In time we hope to add many of these materials to the HRVH. In the meantime, researchers interested in related themes and topics should contact library staff directly.
Browse all Vassar College Collections
Browse the Images of Early Vassar - The collection makes available all of the photographs in the Archives Files collection, which provide visual documentation of Raymond Avenue, Vassar Lake, college buildings and buildings relating to Matthew Vassar's family, as well as class groups, faculty, presidents, students, trustees, and Matthew Vassar and his relatives. The photographs have been fully cataloged and users may search them in a variety of ways. Most users will find the subject searching to be quick and useful.
Browse the Christine Ladd-Franklin Diary - The collection contains the diary of Christine Ladd-Franklin, Vassar College Class of 1869, and noted mathematician and logician. The diary documents her experience as a Vassar student, the challenges of financing her education, and her early years of teaching before beginning her graduate work in mathematics and at Johns Hopkins University.
Browse the John Burroughs Journals - John Burroughs (1837-1921) was a noted naturalist, essayist and a significant figure in the history of environmentalism. He was born in a small town in the Catskills and spent the bulk of his adult life in West Park. This set of journals dates from 1876-1921; An additional notebook covers the years 1860-1865. The Burroughs project was conceived by Earth Science professor Jeff Walker and the scanning work was made possible by a Mellon Foundation grant awarded to Vassar's Environmental Studies Program. The project is currently a work in progress; journals are being added to Hudson River Valley Heritage as metadata and transcription work is finalized. At completion, there will be 54 volumes available. The journals are only a part of the John Burroughs Papers at Vassar. Please consult the online guide for more information or contact our library staff.
Music Programs Collection - One of the oldest continuous collections of concert programs in an academic institution, the Music Programs Collection documents Vassar College Department of Music events from 1866 to the present. Student and faculty concerts, interdepartmental collaborations, and guest appearances by music scholars, composers, critics, and performers of jazz, world music, and classical music are represented here. This collection offers glimpses of the history of college level music pedagogy, topics of interest to the institution, contemporary taste in repertoire, and concert programming practice. In this initial phase of the project, programs from the periods March 1866-June 1887 and October 1953-May 1969 are covered, and we will add more as the collection grows.