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Environmental History Resources

Neil and Laurene in canoe with decals June 1 1985

The manuscript collections held in Special Collections constitute a substantial record of the environmental history of Arkansas and the region. The collections address environmental policy at the state and federal level; the development of local and state-wide activist organizations; and the creation of parks and other preserves by state and federal governments. The decades-long effort to preserve the Buffalo River is particularly well-documented, including the papers of Dr. Neil Compton, the Ozark Society, and other individuals associated with organizing to prevent the damming of Arkansas’s wild rivers, and ultimately, to ensure the protection of the Buffalo as a part of the National Park Service.

Senator Dale Bumpers looks over an Arkansas landscape set to become federally protected wilderness

Senator Dale Bumpers looks over an Arkansas landscape set to become federally protected wilderness.

Special Collections also holds the records of Arkansas branches of national and international environmental advocacy groups such as the Audubon Society. Several collections pertain to Arkansas garden and horticultural clubs, and the department also holds the records of the UA Agricultural Cooperative Extension Services and numerous other affiliated entities, as well as collections related to natural resources, industry, and economic development.

Additionally, the University Libraries hold numerous electronic and print resources for the study of ecology, environmental sciences, public policy and resource management and the other areas of study Earth Day helps inspire.

Also, visit the digital project on saving the Buffalo, “40-50-100”: Milestones in Arkansas’s Environmental History.

Political Papers

  • U.S. Senator J. William Fulbright (MS F956 144)
  • U.S. Senator Dale Bumpers (MC1490)
  • U.S. Senator David Pryor (MC336)
  • U.S. Representative John Paul Hammerschmidt (MC1230)
  • Governor Orval E. Faubus (MS F27 301)
  • The Arkansas Wilderness Act Collection (MC 560)

Organizational Records

  • Ozark Society Foundation (MC1811)
  • Ozark Society (MC477)
  • Highlands Chapter of the Ozark Society (MC1533)
  • OMNI Center for Peace, Justice, and Ecology (MC1850)
  • Arkansas Audubon Society Records (MC1282)
  • Environmental Defense Fund, Inc. (MS En89)

Leaders and Activists

  • Neil Compton (MC1091)
  • Samuel C. Dellinger Papers (MC204)
  • Kenneth L. Smith Papers (MC1423)
  • Gus Albright Scrapbooks (MC1295)
  • Griffee, Carol. Materials (MC 1179)
  • Hedges, Margaret. The Justice Douglas Trip, 1962 (MC1203)
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Last updated: September 11, 2015