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Collection Guide
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Guide to the Sierra Club Records, 1891-
BANC MSS 71/103 c  
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Collection Overview
 
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Description
The records form one of the largest and most comprehensive collections of environmental records in the United States. The Club designated The Bancroft Library as its official archives in 1958, and the organization began transferring records from the San Francisco office to the Library on a regular basis in 1970. A very wide range of record types are included in the collection, including correspondence, minutes, agendas, reports, by-laws, financial records, scrapbooks, sample ballots, notes, rosters, action alerts, statements and testimony, press releases, clippings, and policy statements. Documentation for the early years is scarce, since the Club's office in San Francisco was destroyed in the 1906 earthquake and fire. The largest record series is that of the Conservation Department (Series 9), which includes documentation of the Club's promotion of the creation of Kings Canyon National Park in 1940, its campaign to protect Dinosaur National Monument from a dam-building project, and its unsuccessful opposition to the Hetch Hetchy Valley water project. Individual officers represented in the collection include David Brower, William E. Colby, Robert Curry, Michael McCloskey, and John Muir.
Background
The Sierra Club was founded on May 28, 1892, in the San Francisco office of attorney Warren Olney. In addition to naturalist and author John Muir, the 182 charter members included artists, scientists, university professors, explorers, and cartographers. Their intent, as expressed in the articles of incorporation, was three-fold: "to explore, enjoy, and render accessible the mountain regions of the Pacific Coast; to publish authentic information concerning them. . .[and] to enlist the support and cooperation of the people and government in preserving the forests and other natural features of the Sierra Nevada."
Extent
Number of containers: 316 cartons, 1 box, 22 volumes, 1 oversize folder Linear feet: 400
Restrictions
Copyright has not been assigned to The Bancroft Library. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Head of Public Services. Permission for publication is given on behalf of The Bancroft Library as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained by the reader.
Availability
Collection is open for research.