About the University Archives
It is the responsibility of the University Archives to preserve the institutional memory of Columbia University from its founding in 1754 to the present-day. The Archives aims to identify, appraise, collect, describe, preserve and, where appropriate, make available to administrators, researchers, and the general public University records which document the evolution of the University in all its variety including its contributions to teaching and research; the development of schools, academic departments and programs, institutes, and administrative units; campus life; public service; and the University’s role in the history of the metropolitan, national, and international communities.
The University Archives also seeks to educate the Columbia community regarding the existence and importance of historical records in the University’s offices and to encourage the transfer of historical records to the Archives. In its commitment to the University’s overall mission of teaching and learning, the Archives informs the Columbia community and the community of scholars about the wealth and value of its holdings and encourages their use.
Although information about Architecture, Columbia’s Law School, Health Sciences campus, Earth Institute, Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, Nevis Laboratories, Barnard College, Teachers College, and Union Theological Seminary may be found among its holdings, the University Archives does not actively collect records from these divisions and affiliates. The repositories listed here may have records more closely related to these academic institutions and subject areas. Please note that most materials, whether at the University Archives or at any of the Columbia libraries, are searchable through the Archival Collections Portal and/or CLIO, the Columbia Libraries online catalog.