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Collection Summary


UA 6.14


College of Arts and Sciences, Department of History Records


Department of History, College of Arts and Sciences, South Dakota State University




0.42 linear feet (1 document case) sound recordings




Hilton M. Briggs Library, Brookings, South Dakota.

Access note

This collection is open to researchers without restrictions. The materials in the Archives do not circulate and may be used in-house only.

Preferred Citation

Name of item . College of Arts and Sciences, Department of History Records, UA 6.14. South Dakota State University Archives and Special Collections, Hilton M. Briggs Library, Brookings, South Dakota.


The Department of History curriculum is adaptable to personal interests and needs, allowing students to explore the past and make connections to the present. The collection is composed of oral interviews of various persons on topics such as South Dakota State University, South Dakota, and Brookings, SD region conducted by students for the Bicentennial Oral History Project.

Historical Note

The teaching of history at South Dakota State University developed alongside the college. From the beginning, students in all divisions of the college were required to take basic history courses. As time went on and the numbers of students and teachers multiplied, the Department of History was able to carve out its own niche. At times, other disciplines were taught through the department and the name was occasionally changed to reflect these areas. In 1905, the department was known as the Department of History and Political Science, this lasted until 1967. After a year as the Department of History, in 1968 the name changed to the Department of History and Geography to reflect the number of geography courses taught. In 1973, a separate geography department was established and the history department was reorganized into a resemblance of today's department.

The courses offered by the Department of History are intended to prepare majors for careers in teaching, government, and service oriented occupations, and to provide a necessary background for graduate work or other specialized training.

History is now merged into the Department of History, Political, Sciences, Philosophy, and Religion.


This collection is arranged into two series:

Series 1. Bicentennial Oral History Project

Series 2. Departmental records

Contents Note

This collection is composed of oral interviews of various persons on topics such as South Dakota State University, South Dakota, and Brookings, SD region conducted by students for the Bicentennial Oral History Project. Also included is a pamphlet about the History program.

Series 1. Bicentennial Oral History Project.

The Bicentennial Oral History Project occurred during 1976, at the time of the national Bicentennial, the Department of History at South Dakota State University obtained funds to purchase reel-to-reel audiotapes and interview people about local history. Dr. John Miller, professor of history, conducted several of the interviews with the remaining interviews being conducted by students. Dr. Miller created transcripts of many of these audio reels. These transcripts are mainly notes, which indicate interview questions, responses of the informant and the topics covered in the interview. Also included are other oral interviews both prior to and following 1976 conducted by students and faculty that were included with this project.

This series is arranged alphabetically by the name of the informants. While most files contain notes or transcripts of the interview, a data form, and an audio reel, several contain only an audio reel. The data form includes the name, address and general biographical information of the informant, the date of the interview and the name of the researcher who conducted the interview. Signed release forms are found in a separate file. These forms allow the use of the audio reels by anyone for scholarly or research purposes. There are some release forms for which there is no transcript and/or audio reel available.

Series 2. Departmental records.

The Departmental records are composed of a single pamphlet describing the History program and South Dakota State University.

Key Words


Brookings (S.D.) -- History

Brookings School District #1 (S.D.)

Frontier and pioneer life -- South Dakota

Great Depression

National Farmers Organization. (U.S.)

Oral history interview

Railroads -- South Dakota

South Dakota State University -- History

South Dakota State University -- Presidents

South Dakota State University. Department of History.

Volga (S.D.) – History

Container List

View container list on Open Prairie

Department of History Records Container List. UA 6.14

1. Bicentennial Oral History Project11Anderson, Jo Anen and Wagner, John1976 circa
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project12Beatty, John1976
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project13Bibby, Ruth Erwin1977
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project14Biggar, James1970
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project15Briggs, Hilton M.1976
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project16Brookings School District #1 Residents1967
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project17Colburn, John H.1976
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project18Connelly, Morrell "Buck"1976
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project19Cooper, Orena1976, 1977
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project110Crosser, Ora L.1976
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project111Cunningham, Ray C. and Tompkins, Doris1976
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project112Emmerich, Jim1977
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project113Erickson, R. Esther1976
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project114Evenson, A.D. (Mr. and Mrs.)1976
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project115Fenner, Vic ; Hedman, Olen ; and Misener, Alda1979
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project116Fenner, Vic ; Justice, Phyllis ; Misener, Alda ; and Sackreiter, Lucille1979
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project117Hansen, Chris1976
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project118Harding, Neva1977
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project119Haupt, Paulette Ann1977
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project121Holm Clara Thompson1977
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project120Holm, Clara and Karnes, Guy1977
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project122Johnson, John1977
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project123Johnston, Ralph1976
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project124Jordahl, Nancy L.1975
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project125Karnes, Guy O.1977
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project126Kjellson, Carl1977
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project127Kramer, J. Howard1977
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project128McMullen, Olive1976
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project129McMullen, Olive and Nagel, Kathleen1977
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project130Miller, Ward L.1977
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project131Murphy, Maria Sylvia Gehant1977
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project132Rude, Duane1976
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project133Rude, Vern1976
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project134Seykora, Edythe1977
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project135Smith, Howard B.1975
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project136Stine, Larry with Prof. Kinyon's comments1975
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project137Sundet, Stanley and Schlobohm, William1973, 1976
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project138Thorburn, Frank (Rev.)1976
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project139Woodard, Ellsworth and Mabel1976
1. Bicentennial Oral History Project140Younger, Beryl1976
2. Departmental records141History at South Dakota State University (pamphlet)undated

Administrative Information

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open to researchers without restrictions. The materials in the Archives do not circulate and may be used in-house only.

Researchers conducting extensive research are asked to make an advance appointment to access archival material. Please call or e-mail prior to visiting the collection and indicate as much detail as possible about a particular topic and intended use.

South Dakota State University supports access to the materials, published and unpublished, in its collections. Nonetheless, access to some items may be restricted as a result of their fragile condition or by contractual agreements with donors.

Copyright note

Copyright restrictions apply in different ways to different materials. Many of the documents and other historical materials in the Archives are in the public domain and may be reproduced and used in any way. There are other materials in the Archive carrying a copyright interest and must be used according to the provisions of Title 17 of the U.S. Code. The Archive issues a warning concerning copyright restrictions to every researcher who requests copies of documents. Although the copyright law is under constant redefinition in the courts, it is ultimately the responsibility of the researcher to properly use copyrighted material.

Arranged and Described by

Crystal J. Gamradt, 1999 March 2, additions made 2008 August 14.