Pool scene at Riviera Hotel and Casino

Special Collections and Archives News

The UNLV Libraries Special Collections and Archives supports researchers worldwide in the interdisciplinary study of Las Vegas, Southern Nevada, and gaming.

Current Special Collections and Archives News

archival image of four men posing in graduation regalia
UNLV History |

The former student body president and longtime donor passes away, 60 years after UNLV's first commencement. 

construction activity on Allegiant Stadium with Golden Knights billboard in foreground
Business and Community |

The center's newest project will chronicle the extensive and rich history of sports in Las Vegas. 

Spring Flowers (Becca Schwartz)
Campus News |

A roundup of the top news stories featuring UNLV students and faculty.

woman sorting materials in archive
Campus News |

The initiative will preserve materials from campus memorials and include an Oral History Research Center project. 

A selection of items from the Shar Rednour and Jackie Strano Papers on S.I.R. Productions in UNLV's Special Collections & Archives. (Photo by Aaron Mayes/UNLV Special Collections & Archives)
Campus News |

Sexual Entertainment and Economies will provide academic insight for researchers on the history and development of these industries in Nevada and beyond.

woman in red shawl sitting in front of wall of historic photos
People |

The Oral History Research Center and its inaugural director, Claytee White, celebrate 20 years.

Special Collections and Archives In The News


The legendary Tropicana has closed its doors, but Las Vegas' raucous history is still celebrated in sites devoted to the mob, neon and even divorce. Las Vegas rose like a mirage from the lonely Nevada desert in the 1940s and has since gained a reputation for  looking forward and building upward without sentiment or regret. But even the most hard-hearted resident had to give pause last week when it was announced that the beloved Tropicana resort will be demolished and replaced by a Major League Baseball stadium.

Las Vegas Review Journal

Representatives of Bally’s Corp. and Las Vegas’ Neon Museum are still assessing how they will rescue a stained-glass atrium canopy that arched over the Tropicana’s main casino for years. But one other piece of Trop history — a blue neon sign over one of the entrances of the shuttered hotel-casino — was illuminated in a ceremonial flick of a switch Wednesday.

Desert Companion

Las Vegas isn’t good at documenting its art history. Does it matter? I've lately been racking what’s left of my brain for details of an old exhibit — a show by local artists who created work to protest Steve Wynn’s implosion of the Dunes. So, this would’ve been sometime in 1993, maybe? Organized by the then-newish Contemporary Arts Collective, it took place in a storefront on Maryland Parkway near UNLV. I think. I mean, it’s been a few years.

KSNV-TV: News 3

Whether it's memories of their time at the hotel's pool or taking in one of its longlist of entertainment acts, making sure records are kept of the Tropicana Hotel and Casino is top of mind for many.

Telemundo Las Vegas

A week after closing its doors, it was reported that the Neon Museum and UNLV will preserve the historical heritage of the Tropicana Hotel, which will give up its land to build the next Las Vegas baseball stadium.

KSNV-TV: News 3

Community groups are working with Tropicana Las Vegas on preserving historic and sentimental pieces ahead of the resort's closure next week.

Recent Special Collections and Archives Accomplishments

Darnelle O. Melvin (Libraries) presented two papers during the 2023 LD4 Conference on Linked Data this month. "Proactive strategies to improve underrepresentation in public knowledge graphs: A Wikidata sprint in UNLV Special Collections highlighting LGBTQ+ Las Vegas" highlights efforts by UNLV Special Collections & Archives to bring to…
Michael Don Fraser (Special Collections and Archives) recently published a book review in the Journal of Western Archives, Vol. 13 (2022). He reviewed Advancing Preservation for Archives and Manuscripts by Elizabeth Joffrion and Michèle V. Cloonan. In his review, he called this work a worthy update to the ongoing Archival Fundamentals Series…
Tammi Kim (Libraries) is the co-author of an article, "Learning from Las Vegas: Adapting Workflows for Managing Born-Digital Design Records," published in the fall/winter 2021 issue of The American Archivist, the semi-annual journal of the Society of American Archivists. The article discusses UNLV Special Collections and Archives' approach to…
Claytee White (Libraries) was honored by Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman with the designation of Feb. 24, 2021, as Claytee White Day in the city of Las Vegas. White is the director of the Oral History Research Center in the University Libraries Special Collections and Archives, is a member of the Las Vegas Historic Preservation Commission, and is…
Lauren Paljusaj (English), along with Anne Savage and Susanna Newbury (both Art) wrote an essay that was published in Nevada Humanities' inaugural Double Down post on distance — part of its COVID-response series on human connection. The essay considers how to interpret photographs as meaningful points of time-lapsed contact. Using UNLV Special…
Lauren Paljusaj (English) and Anne Savage (Art) have been jointly awarded the University Libraries Lance & Elena Calvert prize for "Intimate Nevada," their research in photography in the UNLV Special Collections. This research reflected on concepts of the vernacular and the everyday in Southern Nevada. Mentors in Special Collections…