Distinguished collections of books and manuscripts are the life-blood of a university


Staff E-Mail Addresses
University Records
Other USM Research Sites
Other Mississippi Archival Repositories
Other Archival Repositories Online
McCain Library and Archives

Introduction Index
The mission of the Archives of The University of Southern Mississippi is to document the history of the state of Mississippi by acquiring, preserving, and providing access to primary source materials.

The Archives is one of the major archival repositories in the state, where personal, family, business, church, and organizational records that document the development of Mississippi and the achievements of Mississippians are preserved permanently and may be consulted by students, scholars, and interested persons with convenient access to the resources of a research library.

We provide permanent protection for approximately 10,000 cubic feet of manuscript and archive collections and over 55,000 photographs. Some of our most frequently studied collections are the papers of Governor and U.S. Senator Theodore G. Bilbo, U.S. Congressman William M. Colmer, Governors Paul B. Johnson Sr. and Paul B. Johnson Jr.; various civil rights collections; the records of the J.J. Newman Lumber Company, the American Tung Oil Association, and the Association of American Railroads; the mayoral papers of the City of Hattiesburg; and the Oseola McCarty collection. In addition, the Archives is the repository for the tapes and transcriptions of USM's prestigious Oral History Program and the archives of The University of Southern Mississippi.

Our collections are preserved according to the standards of the Society of American Archivists in acid-free folders and boxes. The department is located in the McCain Library and Archives building, named in honor of Dr. William D. McCain, former president of the University and director of the state Department of Archives and History.

Other special collections in the McCain Library are the closely related Mississippiana, Genealogy and Special Collections Department and the de Grummond Children's Literature Collection.

Although each collection is as unique as the person or group whose activities it reflects, personal and family collections typically consist of letters, diaries, scrapbooks, school and military service records, certificates of achievement, photographs, and newspaper clippings. Business, church, and organizational records frequently contain ledgers, minutes of meetings, anniversary materials, photographs, scrapbooks, and newspaper clippings.

Our collections are consulted by researchers in the Cleanth Brooks Reading Room under our supervision. To assist researchers, we prepare a detailed manuscript register or written inventory of the contents of each collection, including a biographical sketch, and the collection is catalogued in the online catalog of the University Libraries.

Access Index
Access is provided by catalog records in the USM University Libraries online catalog and by manuscript registers in paper and electronic format.

Restrictions Index
Researchers are asked to complete a registration form and to acquaint themselves with guidelines for the careful use of manuscript collections. Materials do not circulate but copies may be provided within the limitations of the U.S. copyright law unless the originals are too fragile to copy. Part or all of some collections may be restricted by donors to protect privacy rights. Unprocessed or partially processed collections may not be available for research until processing has been completed.

Recommendations Index
Contacting the Archives staff for a preliminary discussion about the nature of the research project will facilitate the visiting researcher's efforts.

Staff E-mail Addresses Index

Ms. Diane DeCesare Ross
Curator of Manuscripts, Archives, and Digital Collections


Information for USM Personnel about University Records Index
The staff of the USM Archives will be glad to work with University personnel to determine which departmental records have permanent historical, administrative, and legal value and which therefore should be transferred to University Archives in a timely manner.

Other University of Southern Mississippi Research Sites Index
University Libraries Information Services (Cook Library) (601) 266-4249

Special Collections (McCain Library) (601) 266-4345

Special Collections Digital Lab (McCain Library) (601) 266-6493

de Grummond Children's Literature Collection (McCain Library) (601) 266-4349

Center for Oral History and Cultural Heritage (Room 105, McCain Library) (601) 266-4574

Other Mississippi Archival Repositories Index
Beauvoir, Jefferson Davis Home and Presidential Library (Biloxi)

(228) 388-9074 or (800) 570-3818

Biloxi Main Library (Biloxi)
Local History and Genealogy Department (228) 374-0330

Delta State University (Cleveland)
Archives (662) 846-4780

Jackson State University (Jackson)

Margaret Walker Alexander National Research Center for the Study of the Twentieth Century African American
(601) 968-2055
Jackson State University Archives (601) 968-2123

Millsaps College (Jackson)
J.B. Cain Archives of Mississippi Methodism (601) 354-5201

Mississippi Department of Archives and History
[state archives] (Jackson)
(601) 359-6850

Mississippi State University (Starkville)
Special Collections (662) 325-7679

Tougaloo College (Tougaloo)
Archives (601) 977-6140

University of Mississippi (Oxford)

Archives and Special Collections
(662) 232-7408

Blues Archive (662) 232-7753

Center for the Study of Southern Culture
(662) 232-5993
Law School Archives (662) 232-7361

Vicksburg National Military Park (Vicksburg)
Museum Collection (601) 636-2199

Revision date: June 8, 2010