Jump to Content

Collection Guide
Collection Title:
Collection Number:
Get Items:
Finding Aid to the Abraham Phineas Nasatir Document Collection, circa 1673-1859, 1925-1971, bulk 1768-1827
BANC MSS 92/50  
View entire collection guide What's This?
PDF (113.16 Kb) HTML
Search this collection
Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Collection Summary
  • Information for Researchers
  • Administrative Information
  • Biographical Information
  • Scope and Content of Collection

  • Collection Summary

    Collection Title: Abraham Phineas Nasatir document collection.
    Date (inclusive): circa 1673-1859,
    Date (inclusive): 1925-1971,
    Date (bulk): bulk 1768-1827
    Collection Number: BANC MSS 92/50
    Creators : Nasatir, Abraham Phineas, 1904-1991
    Extent: Number of containers: 14 cartons, 14 folders Linear feet: 14.67 linear feet
    Repository: The Bancroft Library
    University of California, Berkeley
    Berkeley, California, 94720-6000
    Phone: (510) 642-6481
    Fax: (510) 642-7589
    Email: bancref@library.berkeley.edu
    URL: http://bancroft.berkeley.edu/
    Abstract: The Abraham Phineas Nasatir document collection consists of research materials from Spanish and American archives that were copied and annotated by Nasatir over the course of his career.
    Languages Represented: Collection materials are in English, Spanish and French
    Physical Location: Many of the Bancroft Library collections are stored offsite and advance notice may be required for use. For current information on the location of these materials, please consult the Library's online catalog.

    Information for Researchers


    Collection is open for research.

    Publication Rights

    All requests to reproduce, publish, quote from or otherwise use collection materials must be submitted in writing to the Head of Public Services, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley, 94720-6000. Consent is given on behalf of The Bancroft Library as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission from the copyright owner. Such permission must be obtained from the copyright owner. See: http://bancroft.berkeley.edu/reference/permissions.html. 
    Restrictions also apply to digital representations of the original materials. Use of digital files is restricted to research and educational purposes.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Abraham Phineas Nasatir Document Collection, BANC MSS 92/50, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley.

    Alternate Forms Available

    There are no alternate forms of this collection.

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.
    Archivo General de Indias
    Osage Indians--History
    Missouri River Valley--History--Sources

    Administrative Information

    Acquisition Information

    The Abraham Phineas Nasatir Document Collection was given to The Bancroft Library by Ida Hirsch Nasatir in 1991.


    No additions are expected.

    System of Arrangement

    Arranged to the folder level.

    Processing Information

    Processed by Anastasia Karel and Rachel Gulbraa in 2009.

    Biographical Information

    Abraham Phineas Nasatir was born in Santa Ana, CA, on November 24, 1904. His parents were Lithuanian Orthodox Jewish immigrants, and his father instilled in him an early dedication towards scholarship, both religious and academic. This led Nasatir to graduate from high school at age fourteen, and he received his bachelor's degree from Berkeley in 1921 when he was barely seventeen years old. A year later he completed his master's thesis and quickly pursued his doctorate in history. His mentor, Herbert Eugene Bolton, tried to slow Nasatir down by employing him as a teaching assistant from 1923-1924. The following year Nasatir went to France and Spain on a Native Sons of the Golden West traveling fellowship, and in 1926 earned his Ph.D.
    He spent the majority of his career on the faculty at San Diego State University, and in addition to teaching he published scores of articles and seventeen books or monographs. Unfortunately, on June 30, 1985, the largest residential fire to hit San Diego to that date claimed a large portion of Nasatir's life work - nearly 500,000 documents (copies and translations) and 2,500 books. His greatest regret was that no more than thirty percent of these materials had been utilized, and he had intended to donate the entire collection to the Bancroft Library. In spite of this setback, Nasatir continued to work and publish until his death on January 18, 1991.

    Scope and Content of Collection

    The documents in this collection represent only a fraction of the several hundred thousand that Nasatir acquired over the course of his career. These materials were located in his office at San Diego State University, and were thus protected from the house fire that destroyed the rest of his collection. There are no original documents here; the typical material found for each document includes two transcripts of the original (mss. and ts.), and several translations. His filing system was primarily by date and was largely preserved here. However, there is very little information on what the documents were used for, and no personal or other professional papers.