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University Archives

Researching Cal Poly History

About University Archives

The University Archives are part of Special Collections and Archives, a department of the Kennedy Library. The University Archives was established in 1978 as the official repository for the historical records of Cal Poly.

The department is located in Room 409 on the 4th floor of the library.

The staff of University Archives appraises, acquires, arranges and describes these materials for the purpose of preserving them and making them accessible to both the Cal Poly community and the larger research community for research and exhibition purposes.

The department maintains these research materials separately from Kennedy Library’s general stack collections due to their rare/unique qualities, physical condition, and/or format. Materials held in University Archives do not circulate outside the department.

Everyone is welcome

Special Collections and Archives invites all users to view and use our unique archival collections.  To plan a visit, or simply learn more, please feel free to contact us 805-756-2305 or

Type of Primary Sources You Will Find in the University Archives

The University Archives provides information on campus life, organizations, and activities; the physical campus, its facilities and the built environment; non-confidential information on faculty, administrators, staff and alumni; and campus lore and traditions.

Examples Include:

  • Papers of the Presidents
  • Land acquisition documents
  • Academic Senate records
  • Yearbooks and annuals
  • Course catalogs
  • Athletic Records, such as programs and media guides
  • Student clubs and organization records
  • Scrapbooks
  • Student Newspapers
  • Photographs