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Special Collections in the Design Library

This guide identifies the rare books, artists books, archival slides, art, drawings, and other special materials held by the Design Library.

Drawn by Design

The 2014 Knight Llibrary exhibit Drawn to Design featured impressive drawings from the Design Library's historic student drawings collection. Poster designed by Cristian Bobboia.


The architectural drawings in the Design Library consist primarily of student drawings dating from 1914-1970s described below. Other holdings include works by Albert E. Doyle and other regional architects.

College of Design Student Drawings Collection, 1925-1955

The historic student drawings collection contains approximately 1,600 drawings created by architecture students in the University of Oregon’s College of Design during the years 1914-1970. Stored in the Design Library, these works are arranged chronologically by year, then alphabetically by creator. They were created using various media, including charcoal, watercolor, and blueprint, and range in size from 18” x 28” to 46” x 72”.

The drawings demonstrate the pedagogy of the architecture program, including analytiques, ornamentation, and sketch problems. The works reflect the changing styles of periods from Beaux-Arts to midcentury Modernism. They give a unique insight to the development of the Pacific Northwest architectural style, and the collection as a whole provides insight into the first works of artists who became important architects of the region, including: Chloethiel B. Woodard (Smith), Lee Nelson, Mel Streeter, Edith Yang, Howard Backen, Hollis Johnston, Mary L. Allen (Rosenberg), Eyler Brown, Wallace Hayden, and Walter Church.

Finding Aid

In 2014, Helene Marie Hannon, a library science student supported by the Robert and Dorris Thomas Endowment Fund, Edward Teague, Head of the Design Library, and Stephanie Kays, archivist with the Special Collections and University Archives department, collaborated in creating a finding aid to this collection. The finding is part of Archive West, the digital archives collaborative project of the Orbis Cascade Alliance. 2014

Access the finding aid:

School of Architecture and Allied Arts (AAA) Student Drawings Collection, 1925-1955

Visit the Design Library

The Design Library is located in 200 Lawrence Hall at the University of Oregon. In the library you can:

  • get research assistance
  • check out books & more
  • study in sunlit spaces
  • use the computers, scanners, printers
  • see an exhibition
  • reserve a collaboration room

Library hours available here