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Preliminary Guide to the Wilbur R. Jacobs Papers
UArch FacP 16  
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Access Restrictions
  • Publication Rights
  • Preferred Citation
  • Acquisition Information
  • Biography
  • Scope and Content of Collection
  • Indexing Terms
  • Related Material

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Wilbur R. Jacobs Papers
    Dates: 1919-1998
    Collection number: UArch FacP 16
    Creator: Jacobs, Wilbur R.
    Collection Size: 14 linear feet (3 records cartons, 26 document boxes, and 1 audiotape).
    Repository: University of California, Santa Barbara. Library. Dept. of Special Collections
    Santa Barbara, CA 93106
    Abstract: The collection includes newspapers, writings, monographs, articles, book reviews, foreign language works, lectures, and letters to editors.
    Physical location: SRLF (Boxes 1-29); Annex 2 (audiotape).
    Languages: English

    Access Restrictions

    This collection is stored offsite. Advance notice is required for retrieval.

    Publication Rights

    Copyright has not been assigned to the Department of Special Collections, UCSB. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Head of Special Collections. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the Department of Special Collections as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which also must be obtained.

    Preferred Citation

    Wilbur R. Jacobs Papers. UArch FacP 16. Department of Special Collections, Davidson Library, University of California, Santa Barbara.

    Acquisition Information

    Multiple donations by Wilbur Jacobs and his widow, Priscilla Jacobs, ca. 1960s-2004.


    Wilbur R. Jacobs was born on June 30, 1918, in Chicago, Illinois. He graduated from UCLA in 1940 then received a MA in history with honors from UCLA in 1942. In 1941, he entered the Army Air Forces, and was discharged from the service in late 1945. Jacobs returned to UCLA for a PhD in history in 1947. He was a member of the history department faculty at Stanford University, 1947-1949, during which time he also taught at Indian University, in the summer of 1948. In 1949, Jacobs accepted a teaching position at University of California, Santa Barbara College. He was a founding member of the faculty of the History Department at UCSB and an internationally recognized scholar in the fields of American Indian [Native American] history, environmental history, U.S. colonial history, and the West/westward expansion, including examination of the work of Francis Parkman and Frederick Jackson Turner. He was the recipient of numerous awards, including the Western History Association's Award of Merit. He was also the president of several scholarly organizations: the Pacific Coast Branch of the American Historical Association (1977), the American Society for Environmental History (1979-1980), and the American Society for Ethnohistory (1980). The History Department established the Wilbur Jacobs Award for outstanding graduate students in Native American history. Jacobs retired from the faculty at UCSB in 1988. He died on June 15, 1998, in Pasadena, California.
    For more information, see the Office of Public Information Biographical Files (UArch 11).

    Scope and Content of Collection


    WRJ = Wilbur R. Jacobs


    The collection primarily contains material relating to Wilbur R. Jacobs' research, teaching, and writing. It is divided into the following series:
    • Bio / Personal. Includes bio-bib submissions for several years, vitae, Who's Who in America entries, college papers and diplomas, and trip files. Boxes 1-2.
    • Correspondence – Notable. Includes letters from historians such as John Higham and Samuel Eliot Morison. Box 3.
    • Correspondence – General. Incoming/outgoing, with colleagues, publishers, and former students and acquaintances seeking letters of support for various projects and positions. Arranged by year. 1937-1998. Boxes 3-11.
    • Isla Vista Disturbances, 1970. Mainly issues of newspapers such as El Gaucho, Isla Vista Viewpoint, and UCSB Daily Nexus. Box 12.
    • Professional Organizations. Mainly Western History Association, 1963-1966. Box 13.
    • Research/Subject Files. Major areas include American Indians, environmental issues, Francis Parkman, Frederick Jackson Turner, and the West/Westward Movement. Boxes 13-20.
    • UC – Office of the President (University of California – Academic Assistant), ca. 1964-1965. Boxes 20-21.
    • UCSB. Includes files relating to Academic Senate, History Department, teaching, and PhD students. Box 22.
    • Writings

      Monographs. Mainly typescript drafts and some reviews. Boxes 23-27.

      Shorter Works. Mainly typescript drafts and print copies, including offprints. Boxes 27-29: Articles [also chapters in larger works, essays, talks, and papers presented at conferences]; Book Reviews; Lectures; Letters to Editors
    • Photographs (mostly used as illustrations in writings). Box 29.


    • Audio. Audiotape. Interview with WRJ, 1973.

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.
    Jacobs, Wilbur R.
    University of California, Santa Barbara. Dept. of History
    Turner, Frederick Jackson, 1861-1932.
    Native Americans
    United States -- Territorial expansion.

    Related Material

    Items donated by WRJ but separate from this collection:
    • Hockett [Homer C.] Papers, ca. 1902-1903. Includes course notes for Frederick Jackson Turner's "History of the West" course, when Hockett was an assistant to Turner. Wyles Mss 73.
    • Parkman [Francis] Collection, ca. 1857-1894. 13 ALS by Parkman, historian and author of The Oregon Trail, to various addressees, one genealogy of Parkman, two pamphlets on Parkman and two miscellaneous pamphlets. Wyles SC 166.
    • Soper Family Papers, ca. 1862-1942. Correspondence, clippings, notebook, photographs, and picture postcards pertaining to the Soper family, who settled in Alhambra, California during the early 1880s. Also includes Civil War letters from Charles H. Soper, and essays and stories by Catharine, his daughter, about the area, its scenery and gardens, animal rights, and vegetarianism. Also, research notes about the Soper family, compiled by the donor Wilbur R. Jacobs (UCSB History professor) in the early 1940s. The subject matter mainly concerns emigration to and life in southern California in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Wyles Mss 13.