Archival Collections

The University of Arizona Poetry Center's Archival Collections

The University of Arizona Poetry Center’s archival holdings are open to faculty, staff, students, and the public Monday through Friday year round. Find our hours here.

Patrons are required to comply with the Poetry Center's archives policies to ensure that materials are protected for current and future use. First-time users of the archives must sign an archives and rare books policies form indicating compliance with these policies. 

University of Arizona Poetry Center Records

This primarily print collection contains correspondence, administrative records, board meeting minutes, printed materials, audiovisual recordings, and scrapbooks dating from 1960, related to the unique history of the Poetry Center and its prominent role in Southern Arizona’s literary arts landscape. “Author files” contain records and correspondence pertaining to poets such as Robert Frost, Kenneth Koch, and Allen Ginsberg. A finding aid, which describes how the collection is organized, can be found here.

Voca: Audio Video Library

Voca is a world-class collection of audiovisual recordings of poets reading their work, dating from 1963 to the present, offered free to the public in an online digital library. The Poetry Center has recently completed the digitization of its archive of analog recordings from 1963-2006, and 20 to 30 new born-digital readings are added each year through the Poetry Center’s Reading and Lecture Series. More than 800 recordings are currently available.

Readings on voca are broken down into separate tracks for ease of navigation. They are accompanied by rich, searchable metadata and photographs depicting the authors as they appeared at the time of the reading. A free registration process enables interactive features—including tagging and comments—that allow users to contribute to the scholarly value of the resource. To learn more about voca, just begin your visit or watch this introductory video.

LaVerne Harrell Clark Photographic Collection

This collection of several thousand film negatives and photographic prints consists of portraits of poets by the University of Arizona Poetry Center’s first director, LaVerne Harrell Clark. Many of the portraits were captured on site at the Poetry Center and other locations in Tucson. The collection also contains correspondence and ephemera. Dating from ca. 1960 to 2007, the collection portrays many of the twentieth century’s leading poets, often at unguarded, intimate moments. A finding aid, which describes how the collection is organized, can be found here.

More than one thousand digitized images from the collection may be viewed online at the LaVerne Harrell Clark Photographic Collection online gallery. A smaller selection of digitized images can also be seen at the Arizona Memory Project. Many digitized images from the collection are contained on voca, the Poetry Center’s online library of audiovisual recordings and images.

The University of Arizona Creative Writing Program M.F.A. Thesis Collection

The Poetry Center is proud to house more than 600 M.F.A. thesis manuscripts from The University of Arizona Creative Writing Program. The collection consists of graduate theses in creative nonfiction, fiction, and poetry, dating from 1973 to the present. Thesis manuscripts are housed in the Poetry Center’s Archives Room.

Lists of thesis collection holdings are available as PDFs sorted by genre, name, and year of graduation