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What's New in Special Collections

Voices from the Archives: Holocaust Remembrance Day by Nancy Hardy

By Su Kim Chung on May 2, 2016 10:49 AM | Permalink


Yom HaShoah marks the anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising and is observed during the Week of Remembrance, this year beginning the evening of May 4th. (Holocaust remembrance event at the Jewish Federation, circa 1998-2000. Jewish Federation of Las Vegas Records, MS-00602)

No voices recorded among our archived oral histories are more powerful or heart wrenching than those of Southern Nevadans who recounted their personal memories of one of the greatest war crimes of the modern world. These oral histories, along with biographical essays and video interviews with Holocaust survivors, are accessible online to everyone as part of the Southern Nevada Jewish Heritage Project

Asian-Pacific Heritage Month Photo Essay: The Tomiyasu Family by Nancy Hardy

By Su Kim Chung on April 29, 2016 10:10 AM | Permalink

As part of UNLV Libraries’ observance of Asian, Pacific Islander & Middle Eastern Heritage Month, we’re sharing—and celebrating—an incredible life story documented in our Tomiyasu Photograph Collection. Yonema “Bill” Tomiyasu is notable in early Las Vegas history for the 160-acre ranch he operated near what is now Pecos and Warm Springs Road. The Tomiyasu Farm provided a surprising array of luscious produce for Las Vegas and even the remotest areas in Southern Nevada, as well as for workers at the Boulder Dam construction site.  By Nancy Hardy, Outreach and Reference Assistant, UNLV Libraries Special Collections. 

A portrait of Yonema “Bill” Tomiyasu taken in California sometime between 1908 and 1910.  (Tomiyasu Photo Collection, PH: 0294-0004)

First Folio! The Book that Gave Us Shakespeare on Exhibit at UNLV Libraries Special Collections : September 1 - 29

By Su Kim Chung on April 12, 2016 5:37 PM | Permalink


The University of Nevada, Las Vegas University Libraries was recently selected as Nevada’s host site for First Folio! The Book that Gave Us Shakespeare, on tour from the Folger Shakespeare Library, a national traveling exhibition of the Shakespeare First Folio, one of the world’s most treasured books. The First Folio exhibition will be open to the public September 1-29, 2016.

“The UNLV University Libraries is excited that Southern Nevada will be able to experience first-hand the wonder and rareness of the First Folio,” said Michelle Light, Director of Special Collections. “From Shakespeare aficionados to students studying the Bard’s plays for the first time, this exhibit is a rare opportunity for people in Nevada to see one of the most influential books in history.”

Eadington Gaming Fellow Scott Boylan: In Residence April 10 - April 23

By Su Kim Chung on April 11, 2016 2:29 PM | Permalink


Scott Boylan (Ph.D. The Ohio State University, 1995) specializes in analyzing risk-taking and decision-making under uncertainty. His published work focuses on how factors such as past history, complexity, and effort affect the amount of risk individuals are willing to take when making tax and financial reporting decisions. Boylan is a professor in the Williams School of Commerce, Economics, and Politics at Washington and Lee University in Lexington, VA. He teaches an elective course on casino accounting and the gaming industry.

Six Secrets from Special Collections with Emily Lapworth

By Su Kim Chung on April 6, 2016 12:28 PM | Permalink


Emily Lapworth, Digital Special Collections Librarian - UNLV Libraries Special Collections

In our Secrets from Special Collections series, UNLV Libraries Special Collections staff members reveal a few lesser-known aspects about the archives and offer up personal insight into research and discovery, sharing answers, based on their own experiences, to six intriguing questions. Here, Emily Lapworth, Digital Special Collections Librarian, gives us a glimpse into life working among the rare treasures of the library.

1. When you first began working in Special Collections, what was the one item or collection that made your jaw drop, and why?

Event Highlight: Lecture & Book Signing - April 24

By Su Kim Chung on April 5, 2016 12:03 PM | Permalink


In partnership with the Department of History, we're excited to announce a special book signing and lecture on April 24 with Dr. Leisl Carr-Childers, Assistant Professor of Public History and the American West at the University of Northern Iowa, and author of The Size of the Risk: Histories of Multiple Use in the Great Basin (University of Oklahoma Press, 2015). The University of Oklahoma Press web site notes:

Women's History Month Photo Essay by Nancy Hardy

By Su Kim Chung on March 29, 2016 6:40 PM | Permalink

Planes, Trains and Automobiles…and Women!

Nancy Hardy, Public Services Outreach Assistant, has created a delightful photo essay to round out Women's History Month. Enjoy these fun photographs from our collections!

Since the arrival of the railroad at the beginning of the 20th century—and the subsequent land auction that founded Las Vegas—women have played a critical role in the city’s growth and cultural development. Interestingly, the evolution of transportation documented by photographs in UNLV Libraries Special Collections also tells us a great deal about women’s contributions during that era. Here we’ve gathered images that visually convey a part of the story of women, transportation, and even fashion from Las Vegas’ and Nevada’s earliest days.

Event Highlight: Community Conversations - March 30

By Su Kim Chung on March 28, 2016 1:39 PM | Permalink

Stop by and listen to this unique panel on "Community Conversations" which explores the way in which oral history can help us connect with and understand our community. It features UNLV undergraduate students who conducted oral histories as part of their class projects, and the Las Vegas residents who were interviewed for the project.

Date: March 30, 2016
Time: 5-7 pm
Place: Goldfield Room (3rd floor), Lied Library, UNLV campus

If you have any special accommodation needs, please contact Angela Ayers in the UNLV University Libraries Administration Office at 702-895-2277 (or by email at in advance.

UNLV Libraries Receives LSTA Grant to Partner wtih Vegas PBS

By Su Kim Chung on March 22, 2016 12:33 PM | Permalink


March 1960 meeting at the Moulin Rouge Hotel Coffee Shop to end segregation on the Las Vegas Strip. City officials and NAACP members met to eliminate segregation in public accommodations and jobs and discuss calling off demonstrations on the Strip in the City of Las Vegas and Clark County, Nevada. From left to right: Woodrow Wilson (NAACP), Lubertha M. Warden Johnson, Bob Bailey (NAACP), Clesse Turner (County Commissioner), Butch W. E. Leypoldt (Sheriff), Hank Greenspun (Las Vegas Sun), Dr. James B. McMillan (President of the NAACP), Oran Gragson (Mayor), Dr. Charles I. West, Ray K. Sheffer (Chief of Police), Art Olsen (County Commissioner), possibly David Hoggard, and Donald Clark (NAACP). Marie McMillan Collection PH 0334:0008

Heroines of “Sin City” Pulp Fiction by Nancy Hardy

By Su Kim Chung on March 18, 2016 3:19 PM | Permalink


UNLV Libraries Special Collections includes many unexpected items of ephemera and literature, from elegant 19th Century hotel menus to lurid crime novels based in a fictionalized Las Vegas. 

For Women’s History Month, Public Services Outreach Assistant Nancy Hardy investigates a few of the female characters who populate the tantalizing guilty-pleasure paperbacks of Las Vegas-based pulp fiction that are a unique part of Special Collections.


Cover image of The Only Girl in the Game by John D. McDonald (UNLV Libraries Special Collections)