Collection Strengths

Special Collections is committed to enhancing and expanding all its collections in continued support of its teaching, learning and academic research community. There are over a million items in the collection which range from manuscripts, archival records, rare books, photographs, recordings, and ephemera. 

Collection Strengths

Collection Guides

Research collections are particularly strong in the consumer movement, agriculture, grain science & milling, cooking, military history, Kansas life and culture, and university history. 

Consumer Movement Archives

The Consumer Movement Archives preserves and documents the history of the consumer movement in the United States by providing a repository for the papers and records of consumer leaders, activists and organizations, and by promoting the scholarly use of the material.

Print Collections

The department holds nearly 90,000 volumes of rare, unique, or exemplary books, serials, pamphlets, maps, and broadsides dating from 1486 to the present. 

Our most significant collection strengths include the Cooking Collection, Kansas and Western American history, agriculture, military history, children's literature, historic costumes & textiles, artists' books, science fiction, fantasy, and horror. 

Additions to the print collection are made through purchases and donations

Featured Collections

Cookery Collection

The Cookery Collection is one of the top research collections of its kind in the United States. It contains thousands of cookbooks and related volumes that date from 1487 to the present.

Clementine Paddleford

This collection higlights the life of Clementine Paddleford, a Kansas native and K-State alum who was an internationally-known food writer and critic during the 1920s-1960s.

Delta Chapter 1917-1935

Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc. established their first chapter west of the Mississippi at Kansas State Agricultural College (KSAC). The college’s racially mixed campus became home to the Delta Chapter on April 9, 1917.

Lt. Marjorie Honstead, Experiences in the U.S. Army Nurse Corps in WWII

Lt. Marjorie Honstead (1920–2006), was part of the U.S. Army Nurse Corps. during World War II. The collection documents the years Lt. Honstead served in the U.S. Army Nurse Corps. 

Minnie Howell, K-State's First Black Female Graduate

Minnie M. Howell was the first black woman to graduate from Kansas State Agricultural College (KSAC) in 1901.

The Saint John’s Bible

The seven-volume Heritage Edition of The Saint John’s Bible combines ancient calligraphic techniques with computer technology to create on calf-skin vellum the first hand-written and hand-illuminated bible commissioned in over 500 years.

Last updated: 10/02/2014