Michigan State University

University Archives & Historical Collections publishes second “Tales from the Archives” volume

Elisa Jajuga

EAST LANSING, Mich., Dec. 2022 – The University Archives & Historical Collections at Michigan State University is thrilled to announce the publication of “Tales from the Archives, Volume 2: Sacred Spaces.” This second volume of rich and little-known campus lore comes on the heels of the initial “Tales from the Archives, Volume 1: Campus and Traditions,” published in 2017. Both are compiled by the staff and students of the University Archives.

While the first volume looks at the storied traditions found on the grounds of our nation’s premier land-grant university, this second volume gives us tales centered on the history and everchanging landscape of MSU. Featuring a foreword from MSU Associate Professor of Anthropology Stacey L. Camp, “Tales from the Archives, Volume 2” sets the scene by opening with two campus maps dating back to 1898 and 1946. It follows with brief biographies of notable campus buildings of the past and present, from College Hall to the Alumni Memorial Chapel; significant campus institutions including the Beal seed experiment and the forgotten class stone; and microhistories of campus social issues including those related to energy use on campus and the temporary housing provided on campus after World War II.

Camp, who is also the director of the MSU Campus Archaeology Program, cites the importance of the University Archives in preserving campus history in her foreword.

“MSU Archives plays a critical role in bringing campus history to light. They help the Campus Archaeology Program make sense of the artifacts we find beneath our feet. One of the best examples of this collaborative work can be found in this book in a section entitled ‘Digging Up MSU History.’ This chapter details how Dr. Terry Brock, a former MSU Campus Archaeologist, identified and dated an artifact featuring a student’s signature using a photograph from MSU Archives” (7).

UAHC Collections and Outreach Archivist Megan Badgley-Malone, who is a coeditor of both “Tales from the Archives” volumes, said that this second volume was especially enjoyable to work on due to the kinds of histories that it allowed her and the other contributors to unearth.

“It brings me great joy to use archival collections to help people connect to the past. ‘Tales from the Archives, Volume 2’ allows us to highlight the important work archivists do to preserve MSU’s history. The book is filled with fascinating histories of many campus spaces that hold a special place in the hearts of Spartans,” Badgley-Malone said.

“Tales from the Archives, Volume 2” is 149 pages and includes two maps and 81 illustrations. It is available for purchase at shop.msu.edu.

University Archives & Historical Collections (UAHC) cares for more than 160 years of Michigan State University’s history. UAHC was established in 1969 to collect, preserve and make accessible MSU’s records of enduring historical and administrative value. UAHC collects the official historical records of Michigan State University, including records created by Board of Trustees, departments, offices, programs and committees, as well as the material of individual faculty, staff, students, student groups and alumni.  

The MSU Libraries are at the center of academic life at Michigan State University, providing expertise, collections, and infrastructure for discovery and creation. The Libraries facilitate connections that support research, teaching, and learning in our local and global communities. The Libraries also promote equal access to information and spaces for all and lead meaningful initiatives in accessibility, diversity, equity and inclusion.



Contact: Elise Jajuga
MSU Libraries
Communications Manager

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