Family & Community Archives

Special Collections at the University of Arizona Libraries is committed to the interests and experiences of the local community we serve. Family photographs and printed materials like postcards, letters, certificates, brochures, and other programs are rich in information. These materials not only add to the historical record of Tucson and the U.S.-Mexico Borderlands, they often add context to important historical events as well.

In the spring of 2017, we held our first event—Community Digitization Day—and invited members of the community to bring in family materials dating from 1900 to 1970 that related to Tucson and the U.S.-Mexico Borderlands. Archivists and other professionals discussed the importance and need to care for our historical record. Participants attended workshops about preserving photographs and other types of materials. We also scanned participants’ materials for free.

Our second event, Family & Community Archives Day, was hosted in 2019. We hope to continue to offer similar experiences in the future.

Our online exhibit features materials contributed by community members at these events, with their permission. In addition to highlighting the different materials that families collect, this exhibit represents some of the diverse communities that are included in the University of Arizona Libraries Special Collections holdings.