Menu: Introduction

Northern California is richly endowed with natural resources, material wealth, and a culture that fosters scientific discovery and technological innovation. It is also blessed with distinguished institutions of research and higher education, whose libraries and archives contain extensive collections of primary and secondary resources. First in importance among these are the primary resources—archives and manuscripts—including personal papers, corporate records, oral histories, and pictorial images in a variety of formats including print, holograph, aural and video recordings, and multi-media. These collections, documenting the region's natural history and its citizen's scientific and technological achievements, are invaluable resources to scholars researching historical, social, legal, economic, and policy aspects of California and the West.

Since 1985, scholars using these resources have been assisted by a very useful publication, the Guide to Sources in Northern California for History of Science and Technology compiled by Robin E. Rider and Henry E. Lowood and published by the Office for History of Science and Technology at the University of California, Berkeley. Since its publication, however, the collections have so markedly grown that an update became essential. At the same time, it was desirable to improve the publication's content and access by providing full bibliographic information in an online format.

History of Science & Technology Sources, then, provides access to records of cataloged archives and manuscripts in appropriate University collections. It also complements local online and print catalogs which include the Library's book, serial, and other secondary sources.

Participating Archives and Libraries

The Bancroft Library
UC Berkeley
Berkeley, CA 94720-6000

History of Science and Technology Program
Established in 1972, the History of Science and Technology Program (HSTP) documents the history of science, engineering, mathematics, public health and related fields by collecting, organizing, preserving, and making available books, manuscripts, oral histories, pictorial images, and other formats for scholarly research. The collections are non-circulating, but many finding aids and parts of collections are available online via the Internet.

Much of HSTP's most valuable and unique material is contained in the collections described in the History of Science & Technology Sources database. Included are the personal, professional, research, and administrative records and oral histories of scientists, engineers, mathematicians, corporate entrepreneurs and executives; academic departments and other university units; and corporate bodies within the University and the Berkeley Campus and throughout Northern California.

They number more than 650 individual collections ranging in size from a single file to 200 cartons (250 linear feet). They include, for example the papers of Nobel Laureates Luis Alvarez, Melvin Calvin, Owen Chamberlain, William Giauque, John Harsanyi, E. O. Lawrence, Y. T. Lee, Emilio Segre, Wendell Stanley, and Otto Stern; and records of the Exploratorium, Genentech, Inc., the Federal Telegraph Company, and Kaiser Industries. Supporting these holdings of primary resources are extensive collections of secondary resources, chiefly books and serials in print, microfilm, and multimedia formats.

Pictorial Collections
Many of the archives of personal papers and corporate records include pictorial images cataloged separately in the Library's Pictorial Collections, many of which are included in the Sources database. There are, in addition, pictorial images of scientific interest in the Bancroft Collection of Western Americana (including Latin Americana) which are not in the database. Access to these materials is provided through the Bancroft Library website and catalogs.

Regional Oral History Office
The database includes more than 100 oral histories of leaders in the fields of agriculture, AIDS and public health, engineering, forestry and soil science, medical physics, molecular biology and the biotechnology industry, and the development of the University of California.

University Archives
University Archives includes extensive materials documenting the development of scientific, mathematics, and engineering departments, programs, and other units of the University and the Berkeley Campus. Among these rich resources are records of the offices of the President, Berkeley Chancellor, Research Administration, Radiation Laboratory, Space Sciences Laboratory, and the Lawrence Hall of Science; the departments of Agriculture, Anthropology, Engineering, Anthropology, and Physics; and personal papers of the presidents, chancellors, administrators, and members of the faculty.

Office for History of Science and Technology
543 Stephens Hall
UC Berkeley
Berkeley, CA 94720-2350
The Office for History of Science and Technology maintains a copy of the Archive for History of Quantum Physics (AHQP). Assembled to document quantum physics between 1898 and 1933, the AHQP is an extensive collection of manuscript materials (correspondence, notebooks, lecture notes, etc.) and oral history interviews. OHST's holdings encompass more than 350 microfilms and hundreds of files of paper documents. The collections include the official AHQP additions and some supplementary material local to Berkeley. All primary sources are captured in the current database. As the physical home base of the project that generated the AHQP, OHST also preserves separately its administrative papers.

Water Resources Center Archives
410 O'Brien Hall
UC Berkeley
Berkeley, CA 94702-1718
The Water Resources Center Archives (WRCA) was established in 1957 as part of the Water Resources Center, a University of California multi-campus research unit. The Archives contains technical research material on all aspects of freshwater quality and supply, wastewater treatment, groundwater, coasts, estuaries, dam construction and other waterworks engineering facilities. The collection, consisting of over 140,000 cataloged items, focuses on California and the West, but contains national and international material as well. All of the Archives' material is cataloged in OCLC and is also searchable in the Melvyl Catalog, the University of California's online system. All of the Archives' finding aids are part of the Online Archive of California.

The Archives contains over 100 manuscript collections, photographs and other unpublished materials, over 5,000 historical maps pertaining to water supply information, approximately 1,500 specialized newspapers, annual reports and journals as well as a video collection. In addition, the Archives includes circulating material on current California, U.S. and international water topics.

Additional Archival Resources in Berkeley

| History of Science and Technology Program | University Archives | Regional Oral History Office | Pictorial Collections |
| Office for History of Science and Technology | Water Resources Center Archives |
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