New Year, No Space? Records Management Services at MSU

31 08 2015

By Hillary Gatlin, University Records Manager

As a new school year begins, you may look around at the paper files and documents in your office and think: Where am I going to store these documents? I have no space!

University Archives recently constructed a new records management area for staging and processing of university records.


University Archives can help! The University Archives’ Records Management Program provides a variety of services to assist departments and offices with identifying, storing, and organizing their university records.


What kind of documents do you create in your office? Are they university records? Are they considered permanent or temporary?

The Records Management program creates and manages the University’s records retention schedules, which will tell you what records to keep and for how long. If a record your office creates is not mentioned in the University’s general schedules, the Records Manager will work with your office to craft specific retention schedules to meet your needs. For more information, visit our retention schedules at


Just because you need to retain a document for 6 years doesn’t mean you have to store it in your filing cabinet.

The records management program provides storage to offices/departments free of charge (all you need to purchase are the boxes). This storage service allows you to store your temporary paper records off-site until they are eligible for destruction. University Archives will then store the boxes and contact you for approval when they are eligible for destruction. You can even request the return of materials if they are needed for review or audit. This service will free up your office space and help ensure that your records are retained for the full required retention period. For more information, check out the records transfer process at


Do you have questions about how to organize, file, and otherwise manage a variety of records, both in paper and electronic formats?

University Archives provides free records management consultation on a variety of topics, including shared drive organization strategies, file naming conventions, and general records management best practices. The Records Manager is available to meet on a one on one basis or can present to a whole office if preferred.

Contact University Archives at 5-2330 or to schedule a consultation.

Looking to explore any of these services? Check out the Records Management program on for more information.

Join us for “An Evening with Through the Banks of the Red Cedar” on Sept. 10

18 08 2015

msu football

The Michigan State University Archives & Historical Collections is pleased to announce our upcoming event “An Evening with Through the Banks of the Red Cedar,” featuring Clinton Jones, Gene Washington and special guests, with filmmaker Maya Washington, and moderator Jack Ebling. This event, which is co-sponsored by the MSU Retirees Association, will be held September 10, 2015 at Michigan State University’s Conrad Hall. Join us for a celebration of the College Football Hall of Fame induction of Clinton Jones and the 50th Anniversary of the 1965 National Championship team. Enjoy a preview of the highly anticipated documentary, Through the Banks of the Red Cedar, following the journey of MSU and College Football Hall of Famers Clinton Jones, Bubba Smith, Gene Washington, George Webster, and teammates during the historic era. Archival materials from the University Archives & Historical Collections will be on display for the public with an open house at 6 pm followed by the program at 7 pm. Admission to the event is free by RSVP. Please RSVP online at or call (517) 353-7896.

Free parking is available in Lot #32 on Fee Road.  Directions can be found on the MSU Archives’ website:


MSU in the Year 2055

12 06 2015

What will life be like in 100 years? It’s a question that preoccupies the minds of humans from time to time – particularly during anniversary celebrations. This was the case when Michigan State University was celebrating its centennial in 1955. Professor William Henry Roe, Sr. wrote a piece for the Centennial edition of the Wolverine yearbook imagining what life would be like for MSU students in 2055.

Roe was an associate professor of administration and education at MSU from 1952 to 1965. He taught school administration to graduate students. Roe’s literary pursuits centered on this topic as well; authoring books such as State School Administration and Financing Michigan’s Schools. No evidence could be found that he was a creative writer or typically engaged in fanciful imaginings of the future. This appears to be his only foray into future fiction.

So what did Roe see in our future?

By 2055, all young people who are capable of learning will be required to attend college. A person’s learning potential will be determined with tests, including an EEG. Despite college being mandatory, MSU will cap the number of students on campus at 30,000. Other adults will be educated by MSU faculty at satellite branches state-wide, which is reminiscent of the extension service. This will allow the University to better meet the needs of local communities.

Transportation will be revolutionized. Rather than driving cars, we will use motor-scooter helicopters. And yes, we will still have to pay for parking.

Roe believed swans will replace ducks on the Red Cedar by 2055. No word on the future of our beloved squirrels

Roe believed swans will replace ducks on the Red Cedar by 2055. No word on the future of our beloved squirrels.

Some things will remain the same in 2055. Beaumont Tower will continue to stand as a memorial to the college’s agricultural roots. And the Sacred Space will remain sacred.

The year 2015 gets a mention as well. This is the year that a universal language is adopted internationally, and “a new world understanding of groups, races, and nations had developed.” It could be argued that Roe was not too far off on these points. Thanks to advances in technology, we do have the capability of learning about and, perhaps, understanding other cultures and nations more easily than we did in 1955. Further, English is often regarded as the universal language of science, technology, business, and diplomacy.

We’ll just have to wait another 40 years to find out if Roe was correct about biotic pills, a nuclear reactor in the Stadium, and the end of the MSU-UM rivalry.

For those interested in learning more about Roe’s vision of 2055, his essay can be viewed in its entirety here: “2055 A.D.: Michigan State Observes its Bi-Centennial” [opens as a pdf].


Written by Megan Badgley Malone, collections & outreach archivist.


Katharine Vedder: A MAC Student’s Brush with Fame

27 05 2015
Katharine Vedder

Katharine Vedder

While a student at Michigan Agricultural College (now Michigan State University), Katharine Vedder was involved in the MAC Dramatic Club and MAC Opera. She was even named “Favorite Actress” in the Public Opinion Section of the 1913 MAC yearbook. Her talent and experience helped her land a part in a movie for the [Lansing] State Journal in 1914. The movie was to promote local donations for the “Christmas Ship”, a nationwide effort to send a ship full of presents to children in war torn Europe. A scout for Oscar Hammerstein I, a vaudeville producer in New York City, saw the movie and liked Vedder’s smile and dancing ability. On the recommendation of his scout, Hammerstein offered her a contract, including a nice salary, for a dancing act. Vedder considered the offer but her parents, Mr. and Mrs. Herman K. Vedder, advised her not to take it. The opinion of Mr. Vedder, a professor of Civil Engineering at MAC, must have held a lot of weight. She took her parents’ advice and stayed in East Lansing to earn a degree in home economics in 1916. Vedder’s brush with fame was documented in an undated newspaper article found in the MSU Archives.

State Journal newspaper article

A couple years after graduation, Vedder moved to New York City and worked as an editor for Criterion garment advertising magazine. Vedder married William Carl “Chappie” Chapman, an advertising department employee at Packard Motor Company in New York, whom she met as a student at MAC. Searches in the MAC Record publication gave clues to Vedder’s life after college, but there is no way to know if she regretted giving up her chance at fame.

Vedder played Celia in the MAC Dramatic Club's 1913 performance of

Vedder played Celia in the MAC Dramatic Club’s 1913 performance of “As You Like It”

In the MAC Dramatic Club's 1914 performance of

In the MAC Dramatic Club’s 1914 performance of “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” Vedder played Hermia

*Note: In some sources her first name is spelled “Katharine” and in others it is “Katherine.”

Written by Sarah Roberts, acquisitions archivist.

MSU Archives’ Grand Re-opening on April 28th

27 04 2015

The Michigan State University Archives & Historical Collections invites the public to our Grand Re-opening Celebration on Tuesday, April 28, 2015, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.  The evening begins at 6:30 p.m. with light refreshments in the lobby of Conrad Hall.  At 7:00 p.m. we will have opening remarks in the Conrad Auditorium.  Following that, Charles Keith will give a brief presentation on MSU’s Vietnam Project, a program which ran from 1955 to 1962.  The Archives will be open for behind-the-scenes tours before and after the talk.  This is a unique opportunity to see gems of the Archives’ collections, to tour areas of the Archives not typically accessible to visitors, and to meet and talk with the University’s archivists.

Parking is free in Lot #32 on Fee Road, and reservations are not required.

We look forward to seeing you at our Grand Re-opening Celebration!

Grand Reopening

Scrapbook History: Leon L. Budd

21 01 2015

The Michigan State University Archives hold materials that are decades and even hundreds of years old. Recently, pulled from the shelf was a scrapbook from a student that graduated from this university in 1915, exactly one hundred years ago.

Scrapbook #320 UA 10.3.124

Scrapbook #320 UA 10.3.124

Leon L. Budd’s memory book has specific pages for events to record throughout his college career. He records the scores of various sporting games and writes “Yell – Rah! Rah! Rah! Uzz! Uzz! Uzz! M-A-C!”. There is even a section for interactions with professors, where Budd notes that one of the most valuable lessons he learned was to “study chemistry”.

Scrapbook #320 UA 10.3.124

Scrapbook #320 UA 10.3.124

The next section lists his dear friends, along with their happiest memories at Michigan Agricultural College. “It’s never late till 12 pm and it’s early after that” wrote John S. Hancock of Hart, Michigan. Budd’s friends proved to have some fun with the advice “If you can’t be good be careful”. A couple students bonded over their hall placement with the saying “To Hell with Wells and Abbot its Williams Hall for us” and the rivalry continued “To H—L with Williams – Wells is The Gentlemen’s Dorm”.
The happy thoughts did not disappoint, below are a few favorites:
“Of what shall man be proud of if he is not proud of his friends”
“MAC did it”
“RAH! RAH! For M.S.C.”
“Eat, drink, and be merry”
And of courses they remind us that Michigan’s cold hit this generation as well; “It’s so cold in here that the thermometer is froze”

The chants and songs during the football games shows just how much tension there was (and continues to be) between State and Michigan. Here are just a few of the “College Yells”:

We’ll rub it into Michigan, Michigan, Michigan;
Rub it into Michigan, M.A.C. can.
On to old Michigan.
Rub it into Michigan, M.A.C. can.

Hi-le, hi-lo, hilo,
Michigan’ chances grow slimmer and slimmer
Hi-le, hi-lo, hilo
Michigan’s chances must go.

Scrapbook #320 UA 10.3.124

Scrapbook #320 UA 10.3.124

School dances were also recorded, with marks next to the name of the dances done at a party. Budd attended quite a few dance parties during his time at Michigan State.

Scrapbook #320 UA 10.3.124

Scrapbook #320 UA 10.3.124

Mr. Budd also has some memorabilia from days as an engineering student. One poster depicts a skeleton at a desk with an open book to “MAC valves”. The bottom of the poster reads “=Ye=Faithful=Engineer=”.

Scrapbook #320 UA 10.3.124

Scrapbook #320 UA 10.3.124

The following pages are filled with pictures from Leon Budd’s time at MSC. They include the “Fresh-Soph Rush. 1912. ’16 vs ‘15”, places on campus, his friends, his love interest, and himself. Following those are pages of classic scrapbook findings, the football program, class schedules, and newspaper clippings from the games.

Scrapbook #320 UA 10.3.124

Scrapbook #320 UA 10.3.124

We really get a glimpse into life at Michigan State during Leon Budd’s time here. The buildings have changed, the style is different, and the course options have diversified, but the smiles and comradely seen between Budd and his classmates seem to be an everlasting effect of time at Michigan State.

Scrapbook #320 UA 10.3.124

Scrapbook #320 UA 10.3.124

Scrapbook #320 UA 10.3.124

Scrapbook #320 UA 10.3.124

Scrapbook #320 – UA 10.3.124

Written by Laura Williams

MSU Archives Year in Review 2014

29 12 2014

For the Michigan State University Archives & Historical Collections (UAHC), 2014 has been a busy and rewarding year.  The following are a few of the highlights of the past 12 months.

UAHC started taking small steps in preserving its audio-visual assets this past year. Interns indexed magnetic media, created a manual for handling and processing, indexed the film collection, replaced rusty canisters, and checked acetate degradation. UAHC also began setting up a video and audio digitization lab and identifying player equipment. In April 2014, a special fund was created to raise money for the AV collections, with advertising targeted to alumni ( The “baby steps” approach to AV preservation was highlighted by the poster “One Reel at a Time: Facing the Reality of AV Collections,” presented by Cynthia Ghering and Portia Vescio at the October AMIA conference in Savannah, Georgia.

This past February, the MSU Office of the President unveiled the Morrill Plaza Kiosk, which honors the memory of the late, venerable Morrill Hall and highlights 100 past distinguished professors. Built in 1899, Morrill Hall was MSU’s first residential college for women; in later years and until its demolition in 2013, it provided offices and classroom space for the History and English Departments. UAHC contributed 490 historical photos for use in the kiosk.

The first phase of the Spartan Archive digital repository went live in June 2014. UAHC had received funding from NHPRC to develop a preservation environment for four series of database records from MSU’s Office of the Registrar—Academic Programs, Course Descriptions, Course Schedules, and the Student Directory—as a prototype for a trusted digital repository for born-digital institutional records. Spartan Archive is available at

In September 2014, the third Mid-Michigan Digital Practitioners (MMDP) meeting was held at Central Michigan University. UAHC and the MSU Libraries formed MMDP in summer 2013 to bring together professionals engaged in creating and curating digital collections in Mid-Michigan and the surrounding region, including librarians, archivists, museum curators, historians, and more. Each of the biannual meetings held thus far has averaged 50 attendees. The next scheduled meeting is in Ann Arbor in Spring 2015. Information about past meetings may be found at

UAHC underwent much-need renovation and expansion in 2014. Over the summer, new moveable shelving and an air handler specifically designated for collection storage areas were installed. The next phase of the facilities upgrade, scheduled for completion in January 2015, includes expansion into the space next door to UAHC’s current office for a larger reading room, new workspace for students and interns, and the addition of another secure, climate controlled collections area.

MSU’s records management program, administered by UAHC, expanded its reach on campus with the addition of two new employees: Hillary Gatlin, University Records Manager, and Jennie Russell, Assistant Records Archivist. With this support, the records management program began a long-term project to complete a full revision of the existing university records retention schedules. This revision will ensure that the university’s records policies accurately reflect current record keeping practices, including the maintenance and disposal of electronic records.


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