Archival Collections

Diaries, photographs, maps, letters and more

The library has over 500 archival collections documenting the people and organizations of the Greater Grand Rapids area. Listed below are finding aids for each collection, containing an inventory of its contents and information about the person or organization that produced the collection. Our archival collections are constantly expanding as we receive new acquisitions and donations.

Try our new Special Collections interface or browse the finding aids below.

Collection # Collection Name
1 Nancy Mulnix Tweddale Papers
2 John S. Lawrence Papers
3 Loretta Ortt Papers
4 World Affairs Council Records
5 U.S. Army. 32nd Michigan Infantry Co. H. Papers
6 Paul I. Phillips Papers
7 Amasa B. Watson Post #395. Dept.of Michigan. Grand Army of the Republic Records
8 Russell Family Papers
9 Robert and Harold Woodcock
10 Henry H. Masten Papers
11 Louis Moran Papers
12 Reubey S.T. Ferris Recollections
13 Harlan P. Colby Recollections
14 Edward Comstock Corwin Papers
15 Friedrich Brothers Music House. Papers
16 John Sehler Papers
17 Widdicomb and John Widdicomb Companies Records
18 George E. Fitch Collection
19 Frank Lee DuMond Papers
20 Grand Rapids Federation of Women’s Clubs Records
21 Curtis Riverboat Enterprises Records
22 Frank and Robert Cebelak Collection
23 Godfrey J. Anderson Manuscripts
24 Charles H. Bender. Correspondence
25 Daughters of Union Veterans of the Civil War. Manuscript
26 William Albert Johnson Collection
27 Howard F. Baxter and Robert T. Baxter Collection
28 Annie M. Leitch Papers
29 Grand Rapids Typographical Union no.39 Records
30 Grand Rapids Branch of the Needlework of America
31 Ryskamp Brothers, Inc. Records
32 East Side Ladies Literary Club Papers
33 Godfrey Anderson Collection
34 Kent County Health Department Records
35 Street Railway Weekly / Trolley Topics
36 Woman Magazine
37 Pere Marquette Railroad Co. Collection
38 Trades and Labor Council Labor Day. Programs
39 Michigan Cyclist
40 Cadette Everett Fitch. Collection
41 The Western Wheelman Collection
42 Thomas W. Porter Archaelogical & Grand Rapids Graphics
43 Morris Photo Collection
44 John Ball Papers
45 Kent County Family Life Council. Records
46 Grand Rapids Chamber of Commerce. Records
47 Grand Rapids Industrial Corporation. Records
48 Robert W. Irwin Company Records
49 William M. Glenn Papers
50 Grand Rapids Inter-Tribal Council Indian History Project Records
51 Grand Rapids Citizens League Papers
52 Ashbel Green & William Bond vs. The Chicago, Saginaw & Canada Railroad
53 Maurice La Claire Portraits
54 Grand Rapids Public Library Photo Collection
55 Spring Funeral Home Records
56 Kreigh Collins Collection
57 Ypsilanti Reed Furniture Co., The Ypsi-Doodler
58 Grand Rapids Chicks. Collection
59 James R. Hooper Photograph Collection
60 Ottawa Hills Elementary PTA. Records
61 Coffinberry family papers
62 Globe Knitting Works Photo Collection
63 J. Gerald Vinkemulder Collection
64 Crosby Family Papers
66 Guy Johnston Photo Collection
67 Grand Rapids City Welfare Department – Scrip Labor Collection
68 Grand Rapids Public Library Native American Photo Collection
69 Charles Vandervelde Photo Collection
70 Charles Merrill Photo Collection
71 Massey Family Photo Collection
72 Birdseye Veneer Company Photo Album
73 Camera Shop Photo Album
74 Brewer Family Papers
75 Thomas E. Walsh Papers
76 Grand Rapids Public Library Stereo Card Collection
77 Fannie Phipps Dautrich Post Card Collection
78 Grand Rapids Public Library Post Card Collection
79 Bos Leather Company Records
80 Ray Lewis Badgley Papers
81 Mary Free Bed Guild and Hospital Records
82 Grand Rapids Study Club Records
83 Old Residents Association of the Grand River Valley Records
84 Furniture Manufacturers Association Records
85 Sluman S. Bailey Papers
86 Grand Rapids Authors’ Night Collection
87 Grand Rapids Public Library Cyanotype Collection
88 McGee Photograph Collection
89 Catherine (Kay) Swanlund Collection
90 John H. Schouten Photograph Collection
91 Grand Rapids Illustrated Collection
92 Mary Richmond Kendall Photograph Collection
93 Laura Lorenson Photograph Collection
94 Richmond Family Papers
95 R.C. Allen Corporation Records
96 Western Michigan Genealogical Society Church Records
97 Birdsall Funeral Home Records
98 Mercy Central School of Nursing Records
99 Kent County (MI) Original Survey Collection
100 City of Grand Rapids Photograph Collection
101 Dorothy Keister Collection
102 Duncan E. Littlefair Sermons
103 Grand Rapids Woman’s Club Records
104 Dorothy Leonard Judd Papers
105 Grand Rapids Railway Co. / Grand Rapids Railroad Co. / Grand Rapids Motor Coach Co. Records of Ramona Park
106 Camp Lee Guard Reports
107 Ionia Funeral Home Records
108 339th Ambulance Company Collection
109 Grand Rapids Public Library Records/ GRPL Administrative Archives
110 Dorothy E. Hubbard Skinner Collection
111 Delbert W. Blumenshine Collection
112 George A. Miller Pictorials
113 Black History Exhibit Collection
114 Josephene (Josephine) Bender Collection
115 Harland Bartholomew Collection
116 Charles William Erickson Collection (Charles William Erickson Grand Rapids Veterinary College Collection)
117 Henry McConnell Collection
118 Grand Rapids Public Library Urban Renewal Pictorials
119 Lulu L. Cudney Papers
120 Lynn H. Clark Papers
121 Marguerite King Moran Collection
122 Ada, Michigan Glass Plate Negative Collection
123 Caroline P. Campbell Papers
124 Butterworth Hospital Records
125 Robinson Photographic Collection

    126 Grattan Township Records
    127 Grand Rapids Public Library Woman’s Suffrage Collection
    128 Stephen Deming. Stover Collection
    129 Grand Rapids Rotary Club Records
    130 Grand Rapids Academy of Medicine Collection
    131 Grand Rapids Township Death Records
    132 Kent County Bridges Collection
    133 News Photographs Collection
    134 Robert Veit Fire Department Photographs
    135 Lee Family Collection
    136 Thomas Glass Plate Negatives
    137 Cannon Township Death Records
    138 Pictorial History of Grand Rapids Collection
    139 Grand Rapids (Michigan) Camera Club Collection
    140 John A. Suchowolec Collection
    141 Grand Rapids Historical Society Records
    142 Michigan Authors Collection
    143 Austin Automobile Co. Collection
    144 Kent County Men in the Civil War Collection
    145 Dr. Frank C. Kinsey World War I photographs
    146 Sumner Merrill Wells, Jr. Papers
    147 Mary Emily Schroeder Papers
    148 Lawrence Maile Papers
    149 Emily Deming Collection
    150 Kilmer Family Collection
    151 Kenneth C. Welch Collection
    152 Munro Family Collection
    153 Joan Van Malsen Collection
    154 Bethuel Church Diary
    155 Stegmier Family Collection
    156 The Grand Rapids Area Humanities Council
    157 Latzek Funeral Home Records
    158 Helen Mae Meade Scrapbook
    159 Aurey Strohpaul Negatives
    160 Helen Earlene Risinger Collection (Beans)
    161 Cultural Services Consolidation Committee Records
    162 Grand Rapids Public Library Glass Plate Negative Collection
    163 Kent County Council for Historic Preservation Oral History Collection
    164 The Grand Rapids Public Library Oral History Collection
    165 James Bayne Company Negatives
    166 Grand Rapids Press Monday Guest Oral History Collection
    167 Greater Grand Rapids Women’s History Council Oral History Collection
    168 Arts Council of Greater Grand Rapids Oral History Collection
    169 Arthur W. Weber, Jr. Papers
    170 Wolverine Brass Company Collection
    171 John W. Champlin Correspondence
    172 Swift Family Diaries
    173 United States Army Weather School Collection
    174 Woman’s Committee of the Council of National Defense. Grand Rapids Unit (Michigan). Records
    175 Grand Rapids Public Library Video and Film Collection
    176 Ralph B. Baldwin Papers
    177 Michigan Department of Transportation Photos
    178 Central High School Collection
    179 Lipczynski Family Papers
    180 Santa Claus Girls Collection
    181 Francis Hall Collection
    182 Norma L. Gillette Collection
    183 James C. Craig Collection
    184 Charles W. Darling Copy Photos
    185 Grand Rapids Public Library Michigan Room Copy Photograph Collection
    186 Edwin Pettis Family Papers
    187 Loraine Pratt Immen Collection
    188 Bridge Street House Registers
    189 John W. Squier Collection
    190 Grand Rapids & Indiana Railroad Company Collection
    191 Chicago & West Michigan Railway Co. Collection
    192 Lake Shore & Michigan Southern Railway Collection
    193 Detroit, Lansing & Northern Railroad Co. Collection
    194 Gordon Harrington Collection
    195 Grand Rapids Jaycees Records
    196 Michigan Central Railroad Company Collection
    197 Grand Rapids Public Library Railroads Collection
    198 Avery C. Gilleo Collection
    199 Madeline Parker Groff Collection
    200 Isaac Lewis Tower Correspondence
    201 Old Third Michigan Association Collection
    202 Harry P. Symes Pictorials and Advertising Collection
    203 Thomas J. Majchrzak Collection
    204 Grand Rapids Furniture Designers Association Records
    205 Halden Adrion Collection
    206 Baker Furniture Company Collection
    207 Antrim Iron Company Records
    208 George R. Perry Files
    209 Western Michigan Navy Mothers’ Club of America
    210 Republican Party Home Front papers
    211 M.C. Church Diaries
    212 William F. Drueke Photos
    213 Kent Base Ball Club Records. (baseball)
    214 Campau Family Collection
    215 Marie Cady Collection
    216 Grand Rapids Public Library Ephemera Collection
    217 Dora Spring Collection of Diaries, Letters and Photos
    218 American Red Cross. Kent County Chapter
    219 Samuel H. Ranck
    220 Meyer Postcard Collection
    221 Philip T. Catalano La Grande Vitesse Project Collection
    222 William A. Seeley Grand Rapids & Michigan Graphics Collection
    223 Kent County Library Tour
    224 Grand Rapids Public Library Art & Graphics Collection
    225 The Raymond Karl Sobota Furniture Design Collection
    226 John Douglas Image (Slides) Collection
    227 GRPL Laser & Computer Printer Images Collection
    228 Frederick Stuart Church Art Collection
    229 The Michigan One Room School House Records
    230 Rooks Negative Collection
    231 Marius Rooks City Hall Slide Collection
    232 Grand Rapids Public Library Furniture Trade Catalogs Collection
    233 Grand Rapids Public Library Furniture Industry Collection
    234 Emily Latzek Jennings Family Photograph Collection
    235 Grand Rapids Public Library Michigan & Grand Rapids Music Collection
    236 Grand Rapids Festival, 1969-1980
    237 Pitsch Co. (Capital City Wrecking Co.) Photograph Collection
    238 Sterling Family Records
    239 Grand Rapids Public Library Scrapbook Collection
    240 Grand Rapids Public Library Map Collection
    241 Grand Rapids Sampler
    242 Civil War Documents Collection
    243 Gerald R. Ford Photographs & Memorabilia Collection
    244 Michigan Soldiers Reported in Civil War era newspapers (Carl Bajema)
    245 Past Perfect Historic Preservation Collection
    246 GRPL General Trade Catalog Collection
    247 Vietnamese History Project (& Resettlement Collection)
    248 Jim Winslow Collection
    249 GRPL African American History Collection
    250 James Keeney Photo Album, 1858
    251 Kent Co. African American Baseball Collection (Jess Elsters)
    252 Grand Rapids Neighborhood Associations Collection
    253 Kay Clark Grand Rapids Dance Collection
    254 Grand Rapids Buildings Collection.
    255 Lawrence Jessup Furniture History Collection
    256 Underground Newspapers, ca. 1970s
    257 Peck Collection (including Murder)
    258 City Renewed
    259 GRPL Newspaper Collection
    260 GRPL Womens’ History Collection
    261 Grand Rapids Playground Association/Recreation Association of Grand Rapids
    262 Lydens “The Story of Grand Rapids” files
    263 GRPL Small Manuscripts Collection
    264 Making a Difference : outstanding women in Grand Rapids history
    265 Clemetsen Glass & Film Negative Collection
    266 Lucia Erins Latvian Americans of Grand Rapids Collection
    267 Blodgett Memorial Medical Center School of Nursing Records …
    268 Grand Rapids Century : 100 Years of Photographs : Exhibit (A Grand Century : online exhibit version)
    269 Paul Collins art reference collection
    270 Gathered at the River Collection
    271 Grand Rapids Baseball
    272 Grand Rapids : Past, Present & Future
    273 Father Dennis Morrow Buildings Photos
    274 Michigan & Grand Rapids Annual Reports Collection
    275 Ladies Literary Club Collection
    276 GRPL Furniture Design, Designers & Instructors Collection
    277 Hellenic Horizons
    278 GRPL Poets & Poetry Collection
    279 Lucius Lyon Papers
    280 GRPL Michigan Travel Literature Collection
    281 GRPL General Michigan History Collection
    282 William Alden Smith Collection
    283 Woman’s Christian Temperance Union Collection
    284 St. Cecilia Society Records
    285 GRPL Michigan & Grand Rapids Serials Collection
    286 Perschbacher Real Estate Listing Cards
    287 Betty Gibout Real Estate Listings Slip
    288 Greater Grand Rapids Convention & Visitors Bureau
    289 Greater Grand Rapids Area Publishers, Printers & Publishing Collection
    290 GRPL African American Clippings Collection (Bajema)
    291 Edward Gillis Growing Up in Old Lithuanian Town Papers & Photographs
    292 Hispanic American Oral History Project [Calvin College Latin American History Oral History Project
    293 Ketcham Family Papers
    294 Lyman Parks Photos & Newspaper Clippings
    295 Rix Robinson Collection
    296 Arthur Ormsbee & the Graphic and Printing Industry Collection
    297 Grand Rapids Press Collection at the Grand Rapids Public Library
    298 William Bennett Collection
    299 Eduard Adam Skendzel Polonian Historical Collection
    299 Name Index to the Eduard Adam Skendzel Polonian Historical Collection
    299X Eduard Adam Skendzel Churches Reference Collection
    300 Capt. Charles Eugene Belknap Collection
    301 Grand Rapids Historical Business, City, and Telephone Directories
    302 Fannie Phillips Young Advertising Trade Card Collection
    303 City of Grand Rapids. Records.
    304 Gerald Elliott Michigan Authors Collection
    305 YMCA Collection
    306 DAR:Daughters of the American Revolution Collection
    307 Grand Rapids Lesbian & Gay Organizations Project Collection
    308 Helen Claytor Civil Rights Collection
    309 Kent County, Mi. Records.
    310 Grand Rapids in World War II, 1941-1946
    311 Fountain Street Church Collection
    312 Kiwanis Club of Grand Rapids
    313 Meijer (Meyer) Postcard Collection
    314 Michigan Lithographing Collection
    316 Grand Rapids Schools Collection (includes yearbooks)
    317 George Welsh Collection
    318 Grand Rapids in World War I, 1914-1918
    320 Record of Kent County Soldiers and Sailors in Service in the Great War [World War I
    321 Latinos in Western Michigan Collection
    322 Albert Builders Collection
    323 Grand Rapids Public Library Fuji Pictography Photographic Prints Collection
    324 GRPL Michigan and Grand Rapids Authors & Publications Collection
    325 Grand Rapids Public Library Color Photo Collection
    326 Milhaupt Dabakay Colorama Studio Collection
    327 Marty Arnold Plank Road Collection
    328 Michigan Woman and the Whooping Cough Vaccine Collection : Pearl Kendrick, Grace Eldering
    329 Wayne T. Vandercook family records, including Senator Henry B. Vandercook
    330 Henrietta DeLoof Collection, including Rapids Standard
    331 Shakespeariana Club Collection
    332 Jackson Davis Dillenback Collection
    333 Grand Rapids Ski Club 
    334 Mouw Family Papers
    335 Grand Rapids Public Library Furniture Design Archival Collection, National Literature
    336 Richard F. VanderVeen Papers
    337 Grand Rapids Public Library Grand Rapids Symphony Collection
    338 Grand Rapids Public Library Opera Grand Rapids Collection
    339 Robert Raz and Alberta Massingill Oral History Collection
    340 Hattem Family Collection
    341 Seven Family Glass Plate Negative Collection
    342 Ryerson Library Foundation / Grand Rapids Public Library Foundation Records
    343 Heart and Soul: Grand Rapids Neighborhoods
    344 May G. Quigley Collection of Library and Family Documents
    345 Judge Stuart Hoffius Records of the Vandenberg Sculpture Committee Project
    346 William Hill Photo Collection
    347 Grand Rapids Public Library Religious and Philosophical Organizations Collection
    348 Grand Rapids Teachers Club / Grand Rapids Kindergarten Primary Club (formerly the Grand Rapids Kindergarten Union)
    349 Gary L. Hill Broadway Theatre Guild Stage Door Collection
    350 Robert E. Haynes Magic Collection
    351 Schubert Male Chorus of Grand Rapids, Michigan Collection Historical Records
    352 Emma J. Cole Collection
    353 The Arab American Community in Grand Rapids Collection

    354 Arleigh C. Hitchcock Homestyle Center Collection
    355 Poetry of Linda Nemec Foster Collection
    356 Archives : Sampling the Past Collection, from the Grand Rapids Public Library exhibit, 2005-2006.
    357 Orville Bulman Art References Collection
    358 Grand Rapids Public Library Civil Rights Exhibit Collection: Our Voices Our Liberty
    359 Thomas R. Wilson Digital Photographs of Grand Rapids, Michigan
    360 The Clark Collection
    361 Giacomo “Jack” Buzzitta Stow & Davis Furniture Design Collection
    362 John Gelderloos Civil War Research Collections
    363 Robert G. Nelson Grand Rapids and Michigan History Collection
    364 Thomas R. and Debra C. Dilley Historical Collection
    365 Ralph W. Demmon Art & Architecture Collection
    366 Peninsular Club Collection
    367 Grand Rapids and Nature Collection
    369 Sharing Our Uncommon Legacy of Philanthropy:the SOUL Project
    370 Community Voices Oral History Project
    371 The Old Collection
    372 Hero D. Bratt Grand Rapids Images Collection
    373 John Ball Park Neighborhood Collection
    374 Pantlind Family Records
    375 Harry Wesslund Collection
    376 Stocking School PTA Collection
    377 Gordon Van Smith Postcard Collection
    378 Dr. Eugene S. Browning Collection
    379 Bricklayers’ Union No. 1 Collection
    380 GRATA Board Files Collection
    381 Grand Rapids Mineral Society Records
    382 Family Service Association Records Collection
    383 Polish Heritage Society Collection
    384 Peregrine Grand Rapids Collection
    385 Women’s Advertising Club
    386 Ralph H. Childs/Grand Rapids Anti-tuberculosis Society
    387 Schenck family papers
    388 Thomas C. Mathieu, Sr. Papers
    389 Metropolitan Grand Rapids Planning Association Minutes
    390 Rosemary Scott Collection
    391 Phoenix Furniture Company Folios
    392 Roger Patterson Collection
    393 Benjamin Baum records on the Grand Rapids Metropolitan Area Study
    394 Charles W. Garfield papers
    395 Questers, Inc. Chief Noonday Chapter #879 scrapbooks
    396 Grand Rapids Press Arts and Entertainment Index scrapbooks
    397 Hollyhock Lane Parade records
    398 ArtPrize Collection
    399 Robert Imhoff negatives
    400 Van Hoecks Shoes scrapbooks
    401 Eastgate Neighborhood Association records
    402 Arts Council of Greater Grand Rapids records
    403 Kent Educational Associates
    404 Herpolsheimer Department Store Employee Newsletters
    405 Palmer School Building Story Slides
    406 Tieri Slide Collection
    407 Stolorow parking lot images
    408 Tad Shaw Collection
    409 GR Board of Ed. Census 1910
    410 Rogers Family Papers
    411 North Park Annexation Papers
    412 Jaroslaw de Zielinski papers
    413 Ukranian Society papers
    414 Mary Meade Papers
    415 Calvin College Great Migration oral histories
    416 Grandville Star photographs
    417 Waltz family collection
    418 H. Kuizema & Son ledgers
    419 Grand Rapids Sesquicentennial images
    420 James Christensen collection
    421 Dix family papers
    422 Bertha Buchanan Fulbright Scrapbooks
    423 Nellie Fuller Rice Boer Roberts Collection
    424 Grand Rapids Railway Company Reorganization Collection
    425 Aldrich and Ledyard Collection
    426 Grand Army of the Republic Champlin Collection
    427 Franklin Everett Collection
    428 J. Boyd Pantlind Library Collection
    429 Wurzburg/Arbaugh Department Store’s Records
    430 Sorosis Club Records
    431 Pathways and Clearings Manuscript Collection
    432 Butterworth Landfill Files
    433 Crohon and Roden Company Records
    434 Campau Centennial Celebration
    435 Michigan State Highway Department Collection
    436 Sara Kingsley Smith and Isaac Platt Powell Collection
    437 Britton L. Gordon airport clippings
    438 Breakfast Club Papers
    439 Michigan Grange Papers
    440 Don Farrant Great Lakes History Research Collection
    441 Haskelite Papers and Smedley Family Photographs
    442 William Ryland Slide Collection
    443 Sundbeck Family Photos and Ephemera Collection
    444 Harold Perschbacher Papers
    445 Quimby Family Collection
    446 Keeler Public Art Collection
    447 Alice Loomis Papers
    448 Vivian Brecken Ellis Collection
    449 Gertrude P. Weaver Collection
    450 Celebration on the Grand Collection
    451 Henrie M. Sleeper Collection
    452 Osterhouse Dance Studio Scrapbooks
    453 St. Cecilia Music Society Records
    454 Women’s City Club Records
    455 David G. Winter Papers
    456 Mary Alice Williams Papers
    457 Opera Grand Rapids Art Materials
    458 New Hope Baptist Church records
    459 The Baxter Laundry corporate records
    460 Keeler Brass Company papers
    461 International Association of Rebekah Assemblies materials
    462 Blandford and De Korn family photographs
    463 Robert B. Loomis diaries
    465 Charles E. Wilde papers
    466 Loren M. Page journal
    467 Mayor John Logie papers
    468 East Hills Council of Neighbors records
    469 Kent Garden Club collection
    470 Davis Family Letters
    471 Beineman/McSorley World War II letters and papers
    472 Alt family history and genealogy
    473 Joseph Horner Family photographs
    474 League of Women Voters of Grand Rapids collection
    475 Evangeline M. Lamberts papers
    476 Avery and Ford Gilleo photographs and letters
    477 Grace Oakes Carling photographs
    478 West Michigan Zines collection
    479 Coffee Dunkers of America, Grand Rapids Chapter Records
    480 Greater Grand Rapids Women’s History Council
    481 Sanborn Fire Insurance maps
    482 James Bronkema papers
    484 Collection on labor and communist parties and activities in Grand Rapids
    485 Maxine Sowerby genealogical collection
    486 Judge Douglas Woodruff Hillman papers
    487 Louise VanderVelden photo album
    488 Carl Bajema Michigan History collection
    489 Arthur Fayette Shaw papers
    490 Latzek Family photographs
    491 Dyer-Ives Foundation collection
    492 Francis K Glew papers
    493 Grand Rapids Casualties in WWII
    494 Coit School tour material and slides
    495 Fred H. Locke Papers collection
    496 Native American History and education project
    497 Wilson and Seydel family papers
    498 The Knights of Peter Claver and Ladies Auxiliary
    500 New River Free Press
    502 The Higgins family papers
    503 Effie M. Biever papers
    504 Grandville-Jenison Congregational Church records
    505 Burlingame United Church of Christ records
    506 Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, Grand Rapids Lodge 48, obituary cards
    507 James M. Crosby family papers
    508 Grand Rapids Round Table records
    509 Glenn A. Barrett World War II collection
    510 General Motors Manufacturing Progress records
    511 Guardsman Products collection