Research Links: List of Databases, Course Reserves

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Library Scholarship

Library faculty engage in research, scholarship, and external funding to make contributions to the profession, to advance the Libraries mission, and to take a leadership role in defining the research library of the future.

Library Faculty Publications & Presentations

Digital Scholarship@UNLV » 


Grants received by Libraries

About the Libraries Grants Page

The UNLV University Libraries actively pursues external grant funding opportunities, and welcomes the associated collaborations such opportunities engender with faculty across UNLV as well as with regional external partners.  Grant activities and partnerships reinforce the Libraries’ strategic plans. Within the past five years, the Libraries, with local staff serving as primary investigators, have received grant funding totaling over half a million dollars.  

To date, the majority of externally funded grants have facilitated the creation of new digital collections, and support for the Libraries’ Oral History Research Center.  Grant funded projects benefit UNLV’s lifelong learners and virtual visitors from around the world.

Digital Collections Grants

Grant funded digital projects broaden access to the Libraries’ unique collections while helping to preserve these valuable and often fragile materials.  Online digital collections provide24/7 global online access to compelling primary source materials and afford unique instructional opportunities, k-12 as well as secondary and post-secondary education. Teaching with digital collections supports learning outcomes related to visual literacy, information evaluation skills, complex search strategies, and technology/multimedia skills. The majority of the images in the digital collections are free to download, use in presentations, reuse in classroom projects, or share online. In addition, several collections have customized learning objects built into the collection and aligned with a variety of subjects. K-12 teaching materials are standards-based and aligned with Nevada state standards.   

Documenting the African American Experience (2012-13; $87,000): This current project is designed to identify “hidden collections” (photos, diaries, etc.) within the African American community of Las Vegas, acknowledging that the first step to preserving and potentially broadening access to critically important materials is to unearth them.  The initial effort of identifying material will augment the development of a web portal providing access to digitized copies of such materials, including, initially, a large set of African American oral histories housed at the Libraries’ Oral History Research Center.  Funding provided by the Institute of Museum and Library Services, Library Services Technology Act.

• Dreaming the Skyline: Resort Architecture and the New Urban Space (2011-12; $80,000): This recently published digital collection highlights the work of Las Vegas’ two eminent architects, Homer Rissman and Martin Stern, Jr.  It includes over 2000 items, such as blueprints, schematics, and similar representations of buildings that define the urban landscape of Las Vegas and Nevada.  Funding provided by the Institute of Museum and Library Services, Library Services Technology Act.

• The Historic Landscape of Nevada: Development, Water and the Natural Environment (2010-11; $95,000): This digital collection provides insights into the historic role of water resource management in Southern Nevada, helping to educate and provide information to the citizens of Nevada and beyond about the history or our management of this most critical of natural resources.  It’s comprised of a wide variety of digitized materials (technical reports, diaries, etc.), over 1200 items in all.  The collection features several primary source sets designed to immediately connect educators with historical materials.  Funding provided by the Institute of Museum and Library Services, Library Services Technology Act.

• Menus: The Art of Dining (2009-10; $50,000): This digital collection provides online access to a large portion of UNLV’s international menu collection, primarily drawn from the invaluable Bohn-Bettoni collection with menus dating between 1874-1933.  Users can view each page of over 1500 menus, beautiful from both an artistic perspective as well as providing numerous historical insights into the culinary development and tastes of a bygone era.  Funding provided by the Institute of Museum and Library Services, Library Services Technology Act.

• Southern Nevada: The Boomtown Years 1900-1925 (2008-09; $95,000): This digital collection of over 1600 items provides online access to primary historical materials documenting the early boom years of southern Nevada.  Materials include photographs, newspaper articles, personal and business correspondence, company records, and mining maps.  In addition to search and browse characteristics of all digital collections, this collection includes specially created learning objects correlated to Nevada’s K-12 teaching standards in history and ten other subject areas.  Funding provided by the Institute of Museum and Library Services, Library Services Technology Act.

Oral History Research Center Grants

So much of what is known, or can be known, about Las Vegas still resides exclusively within the living memory of those still here, we must reach beyond  traditional historical records to capture this fragile and elusive history if we are to fully document the history of this area. Oral history is simply a way of documenting and presenting, in a very immediate and engaging way, a piece of history through the actual voices of those who were there; recording what historians have always relied upon in textual form: eye-witness accounts.  The UNLV Oral History Research Center (OHRC) conducts, collects and makes accessible for research audio and video interviews of members of the Las Vegas community, selected for their ability to provide reliable first-hand accounts of the history of Las Vegas and Southern Nevada. It also serves as a repository for oral histories created by other units on campus. Individual oral history projects are designed to select and focus a series of interrelated histories that address a particular historical subject or theme.

• Voices of the Historic John S. Park Neighborhood: A Community Oral History Project ($79,000): Las Vegas Centennial Education Grant

• West Charleston Neighborhoods: An Oral History Project of Ward 1 ($69,000): Las Vegas Centennial Education Grant

• Boyer Early Las Vegas Oral History Project ($12,000): Clark County Department of Parks & Community Services 

• Heart to Heart: An oral history of health care in Las Vegas ($10,000): Harold L. Boyer Charitable Foundation

The Wives of the Nevada Test Site ($5,000): Harold L. Boyer Charitable Foundation

Black Picket Fences: An Oral History of Berkeley Square ($5,000): Harold L. Boyer Charitable Foundation


In addition to leading grant efforts such as those detailed above, the Libraries are happy to partner on efforts led by other institutions or others at the University of Nevada Las Vegas. A few recent funded examples include:

• Western Regional Storage Trust (WEST) (2012),  an Andrew Mellon Grant awarded to the University of California Libraries.  UNLV Libraries is among the twenty libraries and consortia participating in this effort, which seeks to develop a sustainable distributed repository for library print journals, efficiently preserving such materials for access by future generations.

• Planning for a Western Archival Network (2012, $50,000), an Institute of Museum and Library Services grant awarded to the University of Utah.  Several consortia, including one involving UNLV Libraries, are partners on this grant, which seeks to improve ease of use for software and online systems focused on searching archival materials.

• Getting Found: Search Engine Optimization for Digital Repositories (2012, $439,000), an IMLS grant awarded to the University of Utah.  Several consortia, including one involving the UNLV Libraries, are partners on this grant, which seeks to develop methods for making library digital collections / repositories more visible within popular web search engines.

• Nevada Test Site Oral History Project, a collaborative project led by UNLV’s College of liberal arts, funded by the U.S. Departments of Energy and Education.  The Libraries partnered with UNLV’s Department of History in support of work on final oral history interviews included in the project, and in the creation and continued hosting of an online searchable digital collection.  The digital collection provides access to almost 200 oral histories of Nevada Test Site personnel, providing insights about an array of questions and themes related to the U.S. Cold War nuclear weapons program.  

• Western Waters Digital Library, a consortial regional project undertaken by the Greater Western Library Alliance (of which UNLV Libraries is a member) and funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Institute of Museum and Library Services.  This portal provides free public access to a broad array of resources focused on water in the Western United States: personal papers, maps, reports, photos, etc.  Also provided are selected collection guides to help researchers.

Campus Grants

University Libraries have received several grants from campus organizations or initiatives that have also advanced our work to preserve our collections and our history.
UNLV Planning Initiative Award:  “Early Las Vegas” digital exhibit.  $16,160.00

UNLV NIA Award: “Hoover Dam” and “Fremont Street” digital exhibits.  $7,280.00

UNLV Regents Award Program:
Oral History  3 Student interviewers $24,000
Photograph Collection. Student intern $8,000    

UNLV@ Fifty. Oral History Project  $10,000    
Rebel Yell. Digitization Project $15,000