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Criss Library Archives & Special Collections: Home

Criss Library Archives & Special Collections ensures UNO’s unique, rare, and specialized collections of institutional archives, personal papers, organizational records, rare books, and other material is available for public use.

About Archives & Special Collections

The UNO Criss Library Archives & Special Collections collects, preserves, and makes available to the university community and the public unique, rare, and specialized material. This includes personal papers, organizational records, books, maps, ephemera, and other material in selected subject areas including the Arthur Paul Afghanistan Collection, University Archives, U.S. Senator Chuck Hagel Archives, and Special Collections & Rare Books

You can learn more about finding and using material from Archives & Special Collections at Criss Library on these pages and we encourage you to contact us about your research.

University of Omaha cheerleaders, circa 1950s

Whether you're working on a paper for a class, producing a film, writing a book, planning a retirement celebration for a UNO colleague, or researching a campus history project, Archives & Special Collections has the resources for your project. We are also able to host classes in Archives & Special Collections, visit your classroom, and offer tours for groups.

Visit or contact us to learn more.

 OU cheerleaders sending off the football team to the Tangerine Bowl, December 1954.
Credit: UNO Photograph Collection, Archives & Special Collections, Dr. C.C. and Mabel L. Criss Library, University of Nebraska at Omaha. 

Email Archives & Special Collections

Do you have a question for Archives & Special Collections? Email us at or complete our request form.

Find Archives & Manuscripts

Finding aids serve as guides to specific archival and manuscript collections. Finding aids are also often thought of as inventories to collections.

Archives & Special Collections' database provides finding aids for researchers to search or browse. The database was launched in September 2014 and finding aids for collections will continue to be added. Researchers will note finding aids for material from University Archives, Special Collections, and the Arthur Paul Afghanistan Collection in the Archives & Special Collections' database. If you have not found what you are looking for in the database contact staff in Archives & Special Collections for assistance.

Find Books

Archives & Special Collections' books, theses, and dissertations can be found by searching Criss Library's catalog.

Other selected material in Archives & Special Collections that can also be found in the library catalog includes periodicals, some maps, and some audiovisual material. Criss Library's catalog indexes books, CD's, DVD's, musical scores, maps, government documents, theses and dissertations, as well as other material available in the library outside of Archives & Special Collections. 

The Arthur Paul Afghanistan Collection Bibliography, Volume I: Pashto and Dari Titles (1995) and Arthur Paul Afghanistan Collection Bibliography - Volume II: English and European Languages (2000) are available online from DigitalCommons@UNO.

About the Collections

Criss Library Archives & Special Collections includes:

Parts of Hagel Archives Open for Research

Papers Open -- The first set of materials in the U.S. Senator Chuck Hagel Archives is now open for research. The finding aid for Artifacts, Grant Files, Photographs, and Schedules is available in our Archives & Special Collections' database where researchers may browse and search inventories and read overall descriptions of the materials. 

  • The Artifacts series contains a wide range of items collected by Hagel as U.S. Senator and U.S. Secretary of Defense. Among the hundreds of artifacts are awards, commemorative items received at speeches and events, photographs and cartoons, and gifts from colleagues, foreign officials, and Nebraskans.
  • Grant Files show the ways in which Hagel's office assisted constituents and organizations in Nebraska with locating, obtaining, and celebrating grant work.
  • Photographs span Hagel's life from his childhood to his last days as Secretary of Defense. The images offer a compelling visual take on the private and public lives of Hagel as he served the people of Nebraska and the United States.
  • Schedules bring us into Hagel's everyday, busy life on and off Capitol Hill for his twelve years in the U.S. Senate. Schedules include entries on the meetings he took, events he attended, his trips to every corner of Nebraska and outside the United States, and his personal life.

Photographs Digitized -- Over 100 photographs are available in two new online exhibits:

Charles Timothy Hagel: A Life in Photographs: Discover U.S. Secretary of Defense and U.S. Senator Chuck Hagel's roots in Nebraska, his family's commitment to serving their country, and Hagel's own take on how to practice this service. See images of his first campaign, his work in Washington, D.C., and his rise from U.S. Senator to Intelligence Advisory Board co-chairman to Secretary of Defense under President Obama. Finally, catch a glimpse into Hagel's private life in which he has played the role of son, brother, husband, father, and leader. 

Parading Around: Chuck Hagel Campaign Parades and EventsWhen Hagel decided to run for U.S. Senate in 1996, he increased his name recognition and gained supporters by taking part in parades, events, and other activities all around NebraskaThe photos here give visitors a glimpse into the efforts of Hagel and his family, campaign staff, and volunteers while on the campaign trail in 1996 and 2002.  

UNO Yearbooks Available Online

The newest digital collection from Criss Library, the University of Nebraska at Omaha's yearbooks, have been digitized and are now available from the Internet Archive and DigitalCommons@UNO.

University of Omaha 1961 Tomahawk yearbook cover

Breakaway. The Omahan. The Gateway. Tomahawk. Maverick. The university's yearbook went by several names beginning as the Gateway then changing names to the Omahan, Tomahawk, and Breakaway before ending as the Maverick from 1973-1975. The first yearbook, the Gateway (1915-1927), shares its name with the university’s longtime student newspaper. The Tomahawk endured as the campus publication's name the longest from 1936 through 1970. In addition to the name changes, users will notice the changing composition of the volumes over the years as materials and styles evolved.

Whatever the yearbook's name or format, users will find each volume keyword searchable or able to be read like a book online. Yearbooks typically include photos and information about students, events, and faculty. In addition to student organizations, athletics, the arts, and other activities, the yearbooks also present opportunities for alumni, current students, and interested researchers to investigate changing fashions, popular culture, advertisements, and events through the lens of the university's students.

This exciting project was made possible through the LYRASIS Digitization Collaborative – a Sloan Foundation grant-subsidized program that has made digitization easy and affordable for libraries and cultural institutions across the country.

Through the Collaborative’s partnership with the Internet Archive, all items were scanned from cover- to-cover and in full color.  You can choose from a variety of formats, page through a book choosing the “read online” option, download the PDF or search the full text version.

Copies of each volume of the yearbook are also available for use in Criss Library Archives & Special Collections. Contact Archives & Special Collections for further information. 

Reading Room

Reading Room in the Criss Library Archives & Special Collections at the University of Nebraska at Omaha


Archives & Special Collections at UNO Criss Library is open to the public Monday-Friday 8am-5pm and by appointment.

Archives & Special Collections is closed whenever Criss Library is closed

Archives & Special Collections will be closed Monday, May 30, 2016.

Archives & Special Collections will be closed Monday, July 4, 2016. 


Archives & Special Collections relies on the generosity and support of donors for many of the remarkable collections preserved and available to researchers. Contact Archives & Special Collections about a potential gift.

Archives & Special Collections Suggestion Form

Criss Library's Archives & Special Collections is committed to offering efficient and effective service to all patrons. In order to accomplish this and also to improve our services, we need your input. Please take a minute to tell us about your experience with Archives & Special Collections online or in Criss Library. 

Additional general comments or questions about this survey can be directed to:
Amy Schindler, Director of Archives & Special Collections
Dr. C.C. and Mabel L. Criss Library
University of Nebraska Omaha

Archives & Special Collections

University of Nebraska at Omaha O and Archives and Special Collections sign in Criss Library

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