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Archives and Special Collections Home

Homepage for Webster University's Archives and Special-Collections unit

Guidelines for transferring materials

The Webster University Archives collects, organizes, preserves, and makes available material of historical value that documents the institution and its faculty, staff, and students since its founding in 1915. Offices and departments that wish to transfer materials to the Archives should read the information below and follow the indicated procedures. All transfers must be approved in advance.

General types of materials that may be accepted by the Archives

Below are basic categories of materials that may be accepted by the Archives. See our alphabetical list of records for more information.

  • official documents or records produced by the university (for example, correspondence, minutes, publications, reports, yearbooks, newspapers, photographs, media materials, etc.) of lasting importance
  • selected secondary sources (for example, periodical articles about the university)
  • selected papers of current and former university students, faculty, staff, and administrators which are of particular significance to the university's history
  • information on the Sisters of Loretto that relates to the order's founding and operation of the university. Additional materials on the Loretto Community and its involvement in the history of the institution are found in the Community's archives in Nerinx, Kentucky
  • information on certain local organizations (for example, Repertory Theatre of St. Louis, College School) that relates to the period when the organization was directly affiliated with Webster
  • selected artifacts which are especially illustrative of the University's history or traditions

Office records checklist

You may want to perform a survey of the historical materials in your office. Searching the Internet for "records audit" will produce links to a number of forms and procedure guides. We also offer a brief Webster University Office Records Checklist which you can keep for your use or send to the archivist if you want advice on dealing with historical records.


Please note that due to space and staffing limitations, we must restrict the types and quantities of materials we can accept. All donated materials become the property of the Webster University Archives and generally may not be removed from the building. We typically do not accept the following types of items:

  • materials actively being used by your office or department. Since materials don't leave the Archives once they are transferred, it's best not to send anything you frequently need at your fingertips.
  • personnel records
  • student files
  • detailed financial records. We are mainly interested in summary reports.
  • materials of short-term value or of a personal nature
  • materials not produced by Webster (e.g., a program from a professional conference you attended)

Procedures for transferring materials to the Archives

  1. Contact the University Archivist (see profile box in the left-hand column for contact information). You must get approval before transferring materials to the Archives.
  2. Once approval has been given for the transfer, prepare the materials for transfer by making sure they are organized and clearly labeled.
  3. Make sure there are no items in the files that shouldn't be there (for example, active records, personnel or student files, etc.)
  4. Place them in a container and make sure the container is addressed to the Webster University Archives, 470 E. Lockwood Ave., St. Louis, MO 63119.
  5. Call or email the University Archivist to let them know that the items are on their way.
  6. Items may be delivered to Webster University Library's Level 1 Circulation Desk Monday through Friday between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m.