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Visions Photograph Collection

Identifier: Mss-0127

Scope and Contents

The collection consists of positives, negatives and slides that depict the history of Clemson University. There are about 1200 prints, about 1150 negatives and 1200 slides with images that span the period from 1880s to 1960s.


  • 1880s-1960s


Historical Note

In 1985, the Clemson University Centennial Committee identified the creation of a pictorial history of Clemson as the most widely supported proposal to emerge during its planning process (Clemson University Centennial Committee. Report of the Study Phase, pp. 1-14). Clemson University Professor Alan Schaffer created the Visions photograph collection between 1987 and 1989. As author of Visions: Clemson's Yesteryears, 1880s-1960s (Louisville, KY: Harmony House, 1990), he had copies made of several hundred photographs from the holdings of Special Collections as well as of photos from private sources. The approximately 1150 images served as the basis for selecting about 450 images which were published in Visions.


6.7 Cubic Feet ( and 1 oversize box)

Language of Materials



They are arranged alphabetically by subject using a classification system similar to that for the University Archives photographs Series 100. The photographs include Clemson individuals, buildings, activities and events. On the back of the positives are numbers that correspond to the negative number. The negatives are arranged in three binders in numerical order with a paper page with description in front of each page of negatives. The slides are also organized by number in two binders. The photographs are also listed on a computer printout of an ASK SAM database in no particular numerical order.


During the 1990s, Dr. Schaffer transferred to Special Collections additional material including original photographs, accession numbers 96-127, 98-102, 98-11, 98-145 and 99-133. These accessions were integrated into the collection. In a few cases, there are prints without negatives, two different negative numbers for the same print, or items whose provenance is unknown. The processing file includes a listing of all individuals whom it can be determined donated or lent images to this project.

Processing Information

The Visions photograph collection was transferred to Special Collections in 1990 as accession 90-100. Karen Bates, Mike Kohl and student assistants prepared this register in 1992. During the 1990s, additional accessions, 96-127, 98-102, 98-113, 98-145 and 99-133 were received. The register was revised in 2001 by Mike Kohl and Dana Murphy. The register was again revised in 2002 by Laurie Varenhorst.

The conversion of this finding aid to Encoded Archival Description format was made possible with a grant from the South Carolina State Historical Records Advisory Board in 2009-2010. The finding aid was prepared for encoding by Carl Redd.


Visions Photograph Collection
2010 July 8
Language of description
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Repository Details

Part of the Clemson University Libraries Special Collections and Archives Repository

230 Kappa St.
Clemson SC 29634 U.S.A. US