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Archives & Special Collections

Book Collections

Book collections include the McConathy Collection, the Burchardt Collection, the Oklahoma Collections, the John George Collection, and the George Nigh Collection. The Archives and Special Collections also houses the libraries of several individuals whose personal papers are held here: John Simmons, William Edgar Gill, Reba Collins, Lucy Jeston Hampton, King/Howell, and Joe Jackson. What follows is a brief description of the major collections.

bill burchardt Burchardt, Bill
Collection, Undated

The Bill Burchardt Collection of fiction and non-fiction materials is predominantly Western and Southwestern in theme. Items in the collection include rare and out-of-print works, classics in Oklahoma history, award-winning titles, and recognized authors. Bill Burchardt, the author of numerous short stories, articles, and novels, graduated from the University of Central Oklahoma in 1938.

He edited Oklahoma Today Magazine for 23 years from 1957-1980 as editor-in-chief. He was named a UCO Distinguished Former Student in 1963 and has won many other awards among them the Oklahoma Writing Award in 1965 and the Wrangler Western Heritage Award in 1975.

His historical novels have been published in England, Germany, and Sweden as well as the United States. Other items in his collection include audiocassette tapes of interviews with Native Americans regarding their language, traditional songs, and dances.

John George George, John
Collection 1938-1998

This collection donated by Dr. John George, retired UCO Professor of Political Science and Sociology, is one of the regions largest and most diverse collections on political extremist groups. It is rivaled only by the Wilcox Collection in the Kenneth Spencer Library at the University of Kansas and the Political Ephemera Collection in the Manuscripts Department at Tulane University.

Contained in this collection are 513 volumes, 235 serial titles, and 4 linear feet of vertical files dealing with political extremist groups. Materials include both "right wing" and "left wing" groups. Newsletter and journals identified with the "right wing" include the Conservative, Patriotic, Anti-Communist, Libertarian, Pro-Family, Anti-abortion, Ethnic (White) Nationalist, Gun Rights, Free Market and many other to numerous to mention. The "left wing" materials, while not as extensive, express the values, opinions and beliefs of such groups as the Liberals, Socialists, Radicals, Revolutionaries, Feminists, Gays, Marxists, Anti-War, Environmentalists, and Ethnic (Minority) Nationalists.

Dale McConathy McConathy, Dale
McConathy Collection

Dale McConathy's Collection includes 3,600 volumes, 23 of them authored by McConathy, covering a wide range of liberal arts subjects many of which are extremely valuable art and art history books. Dale McConathy, born in McAlester, Oklahoma, received a B.A. from the University of Central Oklahoma, an M.A. from the University of Oklahoma, and did work toward his Ph.D. as a university fellow, in the interdisciplinary Institute of Liberal Arts at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia.

He was named Distinguished Former Student by UCO in 1969 and was posthumously awarded the Centennial Broncho Award during the Centennial Homecoming in October 1990. A critic, writer, editor, and educator McConathy’s career included associations with such magazines as Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, and Time in varying editorial capacities.

By the age of 35 he was Executive Director of Art Park a 200-acre park dedicated to the visual and performing arts located along the scenic Niagara River gorge in Lewiston, New York. It was created and developed at the direction of Governor Nelson Rockefeller in the 1960s and still supports public art today. At the time of his premature death in 1988, Dale McConathy was Chair of the Visual Arts department at New York University.