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Special Collections

Regional Resources


California Historical Society
The California Historical Society is a statewide membership-based organization. Its mission is to engage the public’s interest and participation in collecting, preserving, and presenting art, artifacts, and written materials relevant to the history of California and to support historical research, publication, and educational activities.

Huntington Library
The Huntington Library is one of the largest research libraries of its kind in the United States with specialization areas that include British and American history and literature, 15th century European books, and history of science. The University of Southern California and the Huntington collaborate on joint projects including digital archives and electronic resource sharing. Access is limited to post-doctoral research. See webpage for further details.

Institute for Modern Russian Culture
The Institute of Modern Russian Culture (IMRC), Los Angeles, is concerned with the cultural history of Russia-especially the visual arts and literature during the 19th and 20th centuries. The primary aim of the IMRC is to preserve and propagate the esthetic values of Russian culture and it manifests a particular interest in painting, architecture, photography, and the applied arts.

Online Archive of California
The OAC brings together historical materials from a variety of California institutions, including museums, historical societies, and archives. Over 120,000 images; 50,000 pages of documents, letters, and oral histories; and 8,000 guides to collections are available.

Seaver Center for Western History Research (LACMNH)
The Seaver Center for Western History Research, Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County contains print and manuscript holdings documenting the history of the trans-Mississippi West with special emphasis on Southern California and Los Angeles. The Center's research collection of books, serials, photographs, and maps is available to the general public. USC and the Seaver Center collaborate through resource sharing.

Southern California Library for Social Studies & Research (SCL)
The SCL contains books and archival collections covering the topics of labor, women, civil rights, left culture, politics, and the study of Los Angeles social history. The SCL and USC are currently collaborating on the Charlotta A. Bass and California Eagle digital projects.

Warner Bros. Archives
Presented to USC by Warner Communications in 1977, the USC Warner Bros. Archives is the largest single studio collection in the world. It is the only collection to bring production, distribution and exhibition records together to document the activities of a vertically integrated studio. The making of many classic films is documented from story purchase through theatrical release and chronicled down to the daily contributions of writers, directors, producers and actors. USC Warner Bros. Archives contains the records of Warner Bros. Pictures Inc. and its motion picture-related subsidiaries (including First National and Vitagraph). The records document the period from 1918 (the release of the brothers’ first major feature film) through 1968 (the sale of the studio to Seven Arts). Also included are extensive production records for Warner Bros. television series from 1955-1968.