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About WashU Archives

This guide will help you navigate University Archives' more than 300 unique collections, most of which document the history of Washington University from 1853 to today. Other collections are related to 20th century St. Louis history.

Contact Info

contact special collections

Archive, Manuscript & Rare Book collections are accessed in Olin Library at the Special Collections reading room.

HOURS:  Monday - Friday 9:00-5:00 by appointment

LOCATION:  Olin Library, 1st floor, Danforth Campus


*collections stored offsite require advance notice for retrieval and use

Questions about a specific topic? Contact:

University Archives: Sonya Rooney

Rare Books: Cassie Brand

Manuscript: Joel Minor 

Local History: Miranda Rectenwald

Dowd Illustration Research Archive: interim curator

Film & Media Archive: Andy Uhrich

The Washington University Archives hold many architecture-related collections that document the St. Louis-area, such as:

  • files from notable architects, many whom attended or taught at Washington University
  • records about the College of Architecture (now a part of the Sam Fox School)
  • original plans for buildings formerly owned by the Terminal Railroad Corporation: Eads Bridge and St. Louis Union Station

Several collections also include national and international topics, notably:

  • 19th century photographs collected by Russel Sturgis
  • urban planning work of Harland Bartholomew & Associates (HBA).  
Please note: Collection inventories (finding aid) are linked below, however most materials are in original (paper) format and not available online.  Contact the Department of Special Collections by phone or email to access the collections.

Finding Aids by Subject: Architecture

Local architects and firms:
College of Architecture and related programs
Washington University Campus Architecture
Eads Bridge & Union Station
National and International focused collections

History of Architecture Education At WUSTL

The Washington University School of Architecture was originally part of the School of Engineering and Architecture. The program was first housed in the Cupples I building, and the first professor of architecture was Frederick M. Mann.

In 1910, the School of Architecture was separated from the engineering program as a separate unit. It is one of the 10 founding members of the Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture. Twenty years later, Joseph Givens, whose father had been the architect for the university’s first (downtown) campus, donated money for the construction of a new building to house the School of Architecture -- Givens Hall, which opened in 1932. Since then, deans of the school have included Alexander Langsdorf, Joseph Murphy, and Constantine E. Michaelides, who served in that position from 1973 to 1993, becoming one of the longest-serving dean at the university. In 2005 the College of Architecture joined with the Art program as part of the Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts.

For more history see:

More Resources

Other architecture-related archives in the St. Louis-area
Additional guides from WU Library