- Walter Jones
- Assistant Head, Special Collections
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Western Americana Vertical & Clipping File
HISTORY OF THE CLIPPING AND VERTICAL FILES
The Clipping Files (CF) and the Vertical Files (VF) were created in the late 1960s, but did not really get started until the mid-1970s. Clippings from the Deseret News, the Salt Lake Tribune, and the Daily Utah Chronicle are filed by subject in the Clipping Files. These clippings are on broad subjects dealing with Utah, the University of Utah, the American West, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (The Mormons), important people--mostly Utahns or Western individuals, and a few issues of national importance with an emphasis on Utah (i.e.: Abortion, Equal Rights Amendment, etc.).
The VF files are also done by subject, authors or State and University departments. Items such as pamphlets, papers written for some university classes (if they pertain to a certain event or person in Utah history), magazine articles, and booklets can be found in the VF. Legislative bills can be included in the files, and many of the items within the files were written by the company or person involved, or they were written about the company, place, event, or person.
The VF files are placed under two categories: the SPC (Special Collections) files and the UUA (University Archives) files. The SPC files deal with the people, places, performing groups, events of Utah and the American West, and important national issues (ie Abortion, Equal Rights Amendment, etc.) with a Utah emphasis. The UUA files are those that deal with the University of Utah. Things published by University departments that cannot be cataloged are put in these files. Theatre programs, memoranda, brochures, and pamphlets are some examples of what can be found in the files. The majority of the files that deal with the University of Utah are in the UUA files, but there are some files on the University of Utah in SPC as well.
Many of the Clipping Files have been photocopied onto archival paper because of the heavy use of the files, the wear and tear of patron handling, and the poor quality of the newsprint paper. The files that have been photocopied can be found by looking for the symbol listed in the key on page 3.
The Clipping Files and Vertical Files have been and will continue to be a good resource for patrons of Special Collections. Your cooperation with the rules of use will allow future patrons access to these materials.
How to Use the Reference List
Look up the subject(s) you are interested in to see if there is a file. If there is a file in either the VF or the CF files it will be indicated by the symbols listed in the key below. There are also references to see and see also subjects. For example: Under the subject heading Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome it says see A. I. D. S. Go to that reference to see if there are any files listed. There are both VF and CF files under the subject heading A. I. D. S.
Names are listed by last name first, then first name, followed by middle name or intial, if known. If the person goes by initials, for example, J. D. Williams--but their file is by their full name--under Williams, J. D. there should be a see reference under Williams, J. D. to Williams, John Daniel, which is the correct file name.
Special Collections staff will make all photocopies of the Vertical File and Clipping File items for patrons. If you have any questions about using the list or finding subjects please ask at the reference desk. Thank you.
* indicates that folders are divided into separate years
CF = Clipping file (CF indicates the file is archivally photocopied)
VF = Vertical file
VF (UUA) = University Archives file only
VF (UUA) & CF = University Archives file and Clipping file
VF & CF = Special Collections file and Clipping file