Scope and Content
Title: San José State University Oral History
Collection number: MSS-2006-04-01
1 Linear Foot
San José State University Library.
San José, California 95192-0028
Abstract: This collection contains audio tapes
and transcripts documenting the experiences of key
administrators and faculty from San José State University. The
oral histories described, reflect the changes in campus governance,
curriculum and student life from 1952 to the present.
Physical Location: For current information on the
location of these materials, please consult the Library's Online catalog
languages: Languages presented in the collection:
The collection is open for research.
Copyright has been assigned to the San José State University
Library Special Collections & Archives. All requests for permission
to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing
to the Director of Special Collections. Permission for publication
is given on behalf of the San José State University Library Special
Collections & Archives as the owner of the physical items and is not
intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder,
which must also be obtained by the reader.
San José State University Oral History Project, MSS-2005-04-01,
San José State University Library Special Collections &
Processed and EAD encoded by Veronica Cabrera, 2008.
San José State University (SJSU) has the distinction of being the oldest public
institution of higher education on the West Coast. The early history of SJSU began
in 1857 in San Francisco with the formation of the Minns’ Evening Normal School.
The Minns’ Evening Normal School provided the foundation for the formation of the
first California State Normal School in 1862 and firmly established the college and
university system in the state. In 1870 the campus moved from San Francisco to San José.
San José State University’s name has evolved along with the institution. In 1921
San José State Normal School became San José State Teachers College, later renamed
San José State College in 1935, later renamed California State University, San José
in 1972 when it achieved university status, and finally, San José State University
in 1974. From its beginnings as a normal school to train teachers for the developing
frontier, SJSU has matured into a metropolitan university offering more than 134
bachelor's and master's degrees with 110 concentrations. The California State University
system is the direct descendant of the San José Normal School.
The SJSU Special Collections & Archives received a generous donation from Hobert W.
Burns, former Academic Vice President, Emeritus Professor of Philosophy, to sponsor
the San José State University (SJSU) Oral History Project. This donation provided the funding needed to interview
key administrators, faculty and staff. These interviews document the history of the
university from 1952 to the present, and provide a rich array of personal accounts of
student and campus life, faculty and university governance and policymaking.
Scope and Content
This Collection consists of fifteen audio interviews, interview transcriptions, and
project correspondence from San José State University Oral History Project, conducted
in 2005 and 2006. The Interviews were conducted by Dr. Margo McBane, Bonnie Montgomery
and Suzanne Guerra. Each interviewee was asked to reflect on their early experiences
working at SJSU, to describe key historical events, to discuss changes in policy, and
to comment on the how these policies impacted the students, faculty, and administration.
The interviewees include: Wanda Blockhus, Jack Douglas, Lester Lange, Mary Male, Brett
Melendy, Sam Milioto, George Moore, James Noah, Lela Nobel, Theodore Norton, Jay Pinson,
Wiggsy Sivertsen, James Walsh, Reverend Benton White, Jo Bell Whitlach, Ruth Jaffe.
This collection is arranged into one series: I. Oral History
The following terms have been used to index the description of this
collection in the library's online public access catalog.
San José State University-- Curricula--Programs
San José State University (Calif.)