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The Southwest Collection/Special Collections Library is open to researchers from 9 am to 5 pm, Monday through Friday. For research inquiries or to schedule a visit, please contact Reference Services at or 742-9070. Thank you.

Announcements and Calendar

Calendar of Events

Current and Upcoming Events | Current Exhibits | Upcoming Exhibits | Past Events

Current Exhibits

The Southwest Collection/Special Collections Library exhibits program offers many treats to patrons under the three turrets of our facility on the Texas Tech University campus. More information on our exhibits can be found here.

Current shows include

11/2018 - 6/2019Raiders of the Lost Archive

Rarely seen artifacts are on display in a new exhibit at the Southwest Collection/Special Collections Library.

Since 1925 the Southwest Collection has expanded from a single archive documenting early ranches to a member of the Southwest Collection/Special Collections Library, which includes TTU’s University Archives; The Sowell Family Collection in Literature, Community, and the Natural World; the Crossroads of Music Archive; and an extensive Rare Books Collection. The SWC/SCL is also home to hundreds of rare maps and thousands of scholarly monographs and fictional works on Texas, the U.S., and the world. It also preserves extensive audio/visual holdings in every imaginable type of media, as well as thousands of oral histories.

The Remnant Trust, Inc., and the Vietnam Center and Archive are also housed in the SWC/SCL building. The Remnant Trust, Inc., makes available hundreds of rare manuscripts that they display freely to schools and the general public. The Vietnam Center collects and preserves the documentary record of the Vietnam War and the American Vietnam experience. It is one of the largest collections of its kind in the world.

The items on display have rarely, if ever, been exhibited. They remind us that archival and special collections are more than pieces of paper filed away in boxes. They are also the unique, tangible evidence of a person’s existence; how they lived, how they thought, and how we all remember them.
11/2018 - 6/12/2019World War I and West Texas…a Glimpse

The Southwest Collection/Special Collections Library (SWC/SCL) is commemorating 100 years since the end of World War I with an exhibit titled: “The Great War and West Texas . . . A Glimpse”

The archive holds various materials related to World War I, such as the records of the 36th Division, organized from National Guard units from Texas and Oklahoma. Soldiers from this division went to France in the summer of 1918, as did Texans who served in other divisions, such as the 42nd (or Rainbow) Division.

Within the collections are various materials such as letters, booklets, postcards, photographs, and other items such as military documents. Numerous Reference Files are also available to patrons, as are newspapers and posters from the era. These collections and resources offer researchers a unique opportunity to glimpse West Texas during the Great War.
9/2018 - 12/2018Appeal of the Seal: The History of the Texas Tech University Seal

Designed in 1924 by the campus' master planner, William Ward Watkin, the seal first appeared on Tech diplomas in 1948, but it wasn't officially approved as "The" Seal of Texas Tech University until 1953. A replica of the seal made of red granite was placed at the Broadway and University entrance to the campus in 1972, it stands 12 feet high and weighs 37,500 pounds. Photos and artifacts featuring the seal such as official china, a TTU stole, and a charm bracelet are also included in the exhibit.
10/2017 - 6/2019President Grover E. Murray: A Decade of Progress

An exhibit showcasing President Grover Murray and his accomplishments such as overseeing the transition of Texas Technological College to Texas Tech University, the creation of the International Center for Arid and Semi-Arid Land Studies (ICASALS), forming of the medical and law schools, as well as the construction of numerous campus buildings.
5/2016 - 5/2017Chris Oglesby: Fire in the Water, Earth in the Air, 10th Anniversary

The Crossroads of Music Archive, located in the Southwest Collection/Special Collections Library (SWC/SCL), is proud to announce that the Chris Oglesby collection is now open for research. Oglesby donated his research materials for his book “Fire in the Water, Earth in the Air: Legends of West Texas Music” to the archive in January 2016. His collection contains biographies, correspondence, literary works of the author and others, photographs, song lyrics, audio interviews and more.
An exhibit curated by the archivist for the Crossroads of Music Archive, Curtis Peoples, Ph.D., and fabricated by Lyn Stoll, is located in the Coronelli Globe Rotunda at the SWC/SCL. The exhibit is a small collection of snapshots highlighting some of the artists found within the book, including Tommy Hancock, Terry and Jo Harvey Allen, Joe Ely, Kimmie Rhodes and others. Sept. 1, 2016, marks the 10th anniversary of the book’s publication.
5/1/2014CENSORED! Walt Whitman’s Leaves of Grass

A new exhibit at the SWC/SCL explores Walt Whitman’s controversial masterpiece, Leaves of Grass. From its first appearance in 1855 until Whitman’s death in 1892, this collection of poems was often the target of censors due to its frank portrayal of sensual pleasure.
11/15/2013 - 9/30/2014Texas Tech: Then & Now

Contrasting campus scenes of the last eighty five years are shown in 68 photographs in the Formby Room of the Southwest Collection/Special Collections Library.
2/2012 - 12/2012John Burroughs Award Winners - Holden Reading Room

Featuring Sowell Collection Writers and John Burroughs Award Winners: Barry Lopez, David Quammen, Gary Nabhan along with his Award, plus 15 other books by Burroughs Award Winners.