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Special Collections is open to the public and located on the lower level of Ablah Library.

Although walk-ins are welcome, we encourage scheduling a research appointment.

Special Projects

James R. Mead Digital Collection: Wichita State University Libraries was awarded a grant in 2016 from the National Historical Publication Records and Commission to digitize over 13,000 items from the James R. Mead Papers in Special Collections and University Archives.

Early Township Maps of Sedgwick County, Kansas: Interactive web site featuring some of the earliest township maps of Sedgwick County: government survey maps from the United States General Land Office surveys, chiefly dating from the 1860s; and plat maps and other information from the Historical Atlas of Sedgwick County, Kansas, published by John P. Edwards in 1882.

Western Trails: Western Trails brings together archives, historical societies, libraries and museums from Colorado, Kansas, Nebraska and Wyoming in a collaborative digitization project. Our contribution is digitized 19th century travel guides and James R. Mead's Towanda trading post records.

Digitized Kansas Maps:  Over 325 digitized Kansas maps, dating from 1556 to 1900, are presented for interactive study. 

Wichita Photo Archives:  Collaborative project of Special Collections, the Wichita Public Library Local History Section and the Wichita-Sedgwick County Historical Museum to present images of Wichita online.

Tihen Notes:  Dr. Edward N. Tihen read and took notes from nearly every issue of Wichita's newspapers dating from 1872 to 1982. The transcribed and searchable "Tihen Notes," as they have become known, reflect the people, places and events that have shaped Wichita's history.

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