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Guide to the San Jose State Normal School Records
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Collection Overview
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The San Jose State Normal School Records document the early history and student life of the State Normal School. This collection consists of various types of records: accounting and financial files and ledgers, attendance and achievement records, board meeting minutes, commencement records, diplomas, enrollment statistics, graduate lists, student placements filed in cards and ledgers, teachers class journals, and trustee information, as well as general records pertaining to the daily operation of the school. Also included are a large number of records created by students of the San Jose State Normal School, such as alumni publications, Alpha Phi Omega meeting minutes, class diaries, photo albums, scrapbooks, and sketches. In addition, the collection contains a small number of realia in the form of banners, flags, and the dress of a 1906 Normal School graduate. This collection is arranged into six series: Series I: Administrative and Financial Records, 1861-1932; Series II: Legal Documents, 1870-1936, undated; Series III: Office of the Registrar Records, 1860-1934; Series IV: Students, Faculty, and Alumni Records and Publications, 1863-1927, undated; Series V: Miscellanea, 1871-1990, undated; and Series VI: Textiles, 1881-1921.
In 1857 the San Francisco Board of Education established Minns' Evening Normal School for current and prospective teachers in the city. Named after its principal, George W. Minns, the institution was formally established as the first California State Normal School by the State Legislature in 1862. A decade later, the Legislature voted to move the Normal School to San Jose, and the school relocated to its new home on Washington Square prior to the fall term of 1872. After a fire destroyed the Normal School building in 1880, the Legislature authorized $200,000 to construct a new building on the same site. Completed in 1881, the building was commonly referred to as the Second State Normal School. After several names and curriculum changes, Minns' Normal School is now San Jose State University, offering more than 134 bachelor's and master's degrees with 110 concentrations, and is recognized as one of the top public universities granting such degrees in the West.
42 boxes, 46.03 linear feet
Copyright is assigned to the San Jose State University Special Collections & Archives. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Director of Special Collections. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the Special Collections & Archives. Copyright restrictions may apply to digital reproductions of the original materials. Use of digital files is restricted to research and educational purposes.
The collection is open for research.