Sewell Photo Collection

Jesse SewellIt is unclear how the whole of the Sewell Photo Collection came to be a part of the Special Collections within the Brown Library. Many of the photos deal with the early history of Abilene Christian University (formerly College), including photos of Jesse P. Sewell (ACU’s first President), faculty, students, sports, and facilities. These photos seem to be the main emphasis of what was the original collection, and are believed to be a part of Jesse P. Sewell’s private collection that was donated to the college. Many of these photos have little to no information available on or connected to them as to who is in them or where they were taken. It also appears that some photos gathered for the Prickly Pear (ACU’s yearbook), were added to the collection as well.

As more photos were being donated to an overall history of ACU through the years, they were added to the Sewell Photo Collection. This has resulted in an eclectic range of photos dealing with Church of Christ buildings from across the United States. Many of these photos can be linked to Jesse P. Sewell, but not all of them have this specific information noted on them.

We are providing you with a downloadable and searchable PDF finding aid below, as well as links to our Flickr site below. If you would like a high-resolution digitized copy of any of these photographs, please contact the Digital Scholarship Center for details and pricing.

Sewell Photo Collection Finding Aid

To view the items in the Sewell Photo Collection, please use the finding aid and then find the photos on Flickr using the “Folder #” given to each item:

Section 1          Section 2            Section 3

Robert Donner Collection

The Robert Donner collection consists of books, serials, pamphlets and ephemera on American history, political science, economics, Americanism, minority groups, and Communist and Socialist activities within America.  Donner collected most of his library, which he housed in his Colorado Springs, Colorado office, after his retirement from the Donner Corporation in 1957.

The ACU library received the collection in December of 1964 after Robert’s death in August of the same year. He gave his collection to ACU because, he said, “It is a Christian college, and that is what the world needs.”

The collection consists of about 4,000 monographs and over 3,000 pamphlets and ephemera.  Most of the ephemeral materials were printed by political movements and not released via traditional commercial channels.

Donner attended Yale University from 1912-1913 and started in his father’s steel company business in 1915.  He married Margaret Hunter in 1928 and had two children.  He was at different times involved as president, director and chairman of the board in the Donner Foundation, Inc., which was started in memory of his brother, Joseph W. Donner, by their father, William Henry Donner.  This foundation provides funds for cancer research. The books and pamphlets of his collection are cataloged and searchable in the ALCON database.

Robert Donner Shelved Holdings Finding Aid

Robert Donner Vertical Files Finding Aid