Skip to Main Content

Environmental Collections at The Bancroft Library

About this LibGuide

This LibGuide is not intended to be a comprehensive listing of all environmental collections at The Bancroft Library. Rather, it highlights a variety of materials that have proven useful in class instruction at UC Berkeley and independent research. Included are searching tips and tricks to navigate UC Library Search (the library catalog) and Online Archive of California (the finding aid repository) to find related materials. While the focus of this LibGuide is on primary sources, The Bancroft Library also contains a plethora of secondary sources and recent publications.

For those seeking an extensive listing of collections, please visit the Environmental Collections at The Bancroft Library Subject Guide (Google Doc). Please note that the hyperlinks in this guide are currently being converted to the new UC Library catalog system. In the meantime, the featured collections can be found by searching the title in UC Library Search. Click on the magnifying glass icon in the search bar to limit your query to UC Berkeley special collections and archives.

To see full-sized images throughout this LibGuide
Firefox: Right-click on image and select View Image
Chrome: Right-click on image and select Open image in new tab

Overview of the Environmental Collections

The Bancroft Library's environmental collections are some of the most heavily requested holdings and they are regularly used by a variety of researchers, including, but not limited to, students, faculty, historians, geographers, documentary filmmakers, and journalists. These impressive archival holdings offer insight into the variety and complexity of the environmental movement and its influence on contemporary American culture. In addition, they demonstrate the broad range of interests and activities within the environmental movement at both the national and international level such as the preservation of endangered tracts of land, pollution, public health, and the protection of the oceans, wildlife and indigenous populations. The deep roots of environmentalism in the Western United States have meant that the Bancroft Library is ideally positioned to collect and to make widely available environmental collections of regional, national, and even international significance.

Using The Bancroft Library

The Bancroft Library is the primary special collections library at the University of California, Berkeley. One of the largest and most heavily used libraries of manuscripts, rare books, and unique materials in the United States, Bancroft supports major research and instructional activities.

Materials at The Bancroft Library are non-circulating and must be used in the on-site Reading Room. All those wishing to use Bancroft materials must register as researchers. Registration is free, and just takes a few minutes online using the Aeon system. For information on using The Bancroft Library, please visit the following LibGuides:


This LibGuide was compiled by Lee Anne Titangos, Instruction Specialist at The Bancroft Library.

The following people at The Bancroft Library contributed greatly to the realization of this LibGuide:
    Lara Michels, Head of Archival Processing
    Lisa Monhoff, Environmental Collections Project Archivist
    Janine Gericke, Environmental Collections Audiovisual Project Archivist
    Michele Morgan, Accessioning Archivist
    Theresa Salazar, Western Americana Curator
    Christine Hult-Lewis, Interim Pictorial Curator
    Kathi Neal, University Archivist

Many thanks to the National Historical Publications and Records Commission for funding a two-year grant to process a range of archival collections relating to environmental movements in the West.  

Land Acknowledgment

The author of this LibGuide recognizes that UC Berkeley sits on the territory of xučyun (Huichin), the ancestral and unceded land of the Chochenyo speaking Ohlone people. Please visit Ohlone Land for further info.