Student Life


Black-and-white photograph of eight women. Some hold pumpkins; some raise their pinky fingers to show the sorority's official hand sign.
Members of the Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority, 1988-1989. Call Number: RG 67/128.

University Archives houses photographs, records, and scrapbooks, among other items, related to student life and organizations. The material is arranged in a manner that allows quick access based on the organization, subject, and time period. Individuals can review the online finding aid of student organization records currently held by the Archives to see the types of records available for the various organizations. Information regarding student protests is also available.  The African American Rights Activities and Movements LibGuide provides information on selected primary sources in the collections Kenneth Spencer Research Library pertaining to protests by African American students. 

A small portion of the photographs may be found in the University Archives Photographs digital collection. Photographic reproduction is available; please visit the Request Reproductions page for information. Additionally, Spencer's online exhibits and the Archives Online section of KU ScholarWorks offer historical documents and photographs such as:

Pre-1923 KU student newspapers have been digitized and are freely available on Newspapers.com via the Kansas Historical Society. Users must be Kansas residents and provide a Kansas driver's license or state identification. Included are the following:

  • University Courier (1878-1895)
  • University Times (1888-1889)
  • University Kansan (1889-1890)
  • Student’s Journal (1892-1895)
  • Kansas University Weekly (1895-1904)
  • University Daily Kansan (1904-1922)

Information for Student Organizations

As part of our mission to document the history of KU, University Archives is interested in preserving the records of all student organizations on campus.

Why does University Archives want the records of student organization?

  • It’s part of our mission: document the activities of student organizations affiliated with university departments.
  • To have a more complete, and accurate (inclusive), record of what all students are doing while at KU, because it’s an important part of the history of the University.
  • Researchers cannot use the records if we do not have them.

What types of records (paper or digital) document the activities of student organizations?

  • Flyers
  • Posters
  • Photos
  • Meeting Minutes
  • Scrapbooks
  • Videos

How do you transfer records to the Archives?

  • Gather, and keep organized,* the records.
  • Request to pick up boxes from the Archives if you need them.
  • Complete a transfer form describing the records in the boxes being transferred.
  • Email (preferred) or call Archives to arrange a date and time to bring the records to Spencer Research Library. Contact the Archives at least one to two days in advance so the Archives is open when you bring the boxes.

*The way you organize/keep your records is important and we like to maintain that order, but it’s okay if there is no current organization to the records. We are happy to organize them, usually by date and/or subject.

What are the benefits of archiving their records to student organizations?

  • There’s no cost to the organizations.
  • Records will be stored in an environmentally controlled location.
  • The records will be preserved for future members of your organization.

*Organizations will still have access to their records.

Records Management Contact