Fred Wright Collection on the Nevada Department of Wildlife History

Identifier: 2017-34

Scope and Contents

The collection contains materials that document the history of the Nevada Fish and Game Commission and the Nevada Department of Wildlife as collected by Fred Wright and by a number of individuals involved in the History Project. Series 1 contains materials on the history of the agency, primarily in the form of reports and recollections by individuals. The largest portion of the collection, Series 2, is comprised of publications by the Nevada Fish and Game Commission as well as other individuals and agencies from outside of Nevada on wildlife, wildlife management, and rangeland. Finally, there is information from Fred Wright's time as a lobbyist on behalf of sportsmen and wildlife groups from 1981-1995. Materials relating to this are found in Series 3.


  • 1863-2016


Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research. Materials must be used on-site; advance notice suggested. Access to parts of this collection may be restricted under provisions of state or federal law.

Historical Note

Fred Emory Wright was born on September 24, 1923. He graduated from Humboldt State College in June 1949 with a degree in Wildlife Management and a minor in Botany after serving in World War II. He began work with the Nevada Fish and Game Commission that following September as the Statewide Waterfowl Biologist, stationed in Fallon, Nevada. In October 1954, Wright transferred to the Reno Office as the Assistant Federal Aid Coordinator, a position he held until he again transferred, this time to the recently created Game Division as the Assistant Chief. His primary responsibilities in that position were the development and operation of wildlife management areas.

In July 1970s, Wright became the acting Chief of Administrative Services and was officially assigned the position in July 1971. He served in this position until his retirement in September 1979 after 30 years with the Nevada Fish and Game Commission. After retirement, Wright became a lobbyist on behalf of sportsmen/wildlife groups from the 61st Legislative Session (1981) through the 68th Legislative Session (1995) of the Nevada State Legislature.

The Nevada Fish and Game History Project began around 2005 with two aims: first, to safeguard the institutional knowledge of so many personnel who helped shape the agency; and second, to safeguard physical materials that pertained to the agency. Given the career longevity of so many of the contributing personnel, it is not an overstatement to speculate that almost five hundred years of experience has gone into creating the Nevada Fish and Game agency by just the contributors to this project alone.

Many components of the following narratives overlap in one way or another, but for organizational necessity, the history project has been compartmentalized into these sections: Overview of creating a Nevada Fish and Game Commission and Department with legislative history; air operations/use of aircraft in wildlife management; data processing and automation; two-way radio/communications for agency safety and efficiency; development of wildlife management areas for longterm benefits; and miscellaneous reports.

The following individuals contributed to the project (includes name, position, and retirement date if applicable)

  1. Fred Wright, Project Coordinator and Chief of Administrative Services (1979)
  2. Judi Caron, Nevada sportswoman and Dream Tag Advisory Board member
  3. Patrick Coffin, Chief of Fisheries (1991)
  4. Jim Curran, Chief of Fisheries (1997)
  5. Jack Dieringer, Chief of Fisheries (1983)
  6. Gary Herron, Non-game Staff Biologist (2000)
  7. Mike Hess, Big Game Staff Biologist (1999)
  8. Roy Horsley, Wildlife Area Supervisor (1999)
  9. Jim Jeffress, Big Game Staff Biologist (2003)
  10. Jim Lusk, Wildlife Staff Biologist (1999)
  11. Merlin McColm, Fish and Game Agent/Wildlife Staff Biologist (1980)
  12. Bob McQuivey, Cheif of Habitat (1999)
  13. Fred Messmann, Boating Law Administrator (2009)
  14. Sam Milazzo, Wildlife Regional Manager (1988)
  15. William Molini, Director (1998)
  16. Millard Reed, Consulting Engineer (1963 and 1969)
  17. Norm Saake, Wildlife Staff Biologist (2001)
  18. Dave Savage, Chief Pilot (1979)
  19. Tom Trelease, Chief of Fisheries (1976)
  20. George Tsukamoto, Chief of Game (1994)
  21. Mark Warren, Chief of Fisheries (2012)


6.5 Linear Feet (7 boxes)

Language of Materials



Fred E. Wright worked for the Nevada Fish and Game Commission from 1949-1979, retiring as Chief of Administrative Services. He began the Nevada Fish and Game History Project as a way to document the development of the Nevada Fish and Game Commission as well as the individuals who worked with the agency over the years. The collection contains materials that document the Nevada Fish and Game Commission through reports and reminiscences of individuals involved with the project as well as reports and other publications about wildlife, wildlife management, and rangeland. Also includes materials created and collected by Wright during his post-retirement lobbyist work.


Arranged in the following series: 1) Nevada Department of Wildlife History; 2) Publications; 3) Lobbying and Legislation.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Donated by Fred Wright in 2017 and August 2018.

  • -Virginia and Truckee by Lucius Beebe & Charles Cleg -Fishes and Fisheries of Nevada by Ira La Rivers -Birds of the Great Basin by Fred A. Ryser, Jr. -Assembly History, 1983-1997 -Senate History, 1983-1997 -Assembly Daily History, 1999, 2005, 2007 -Senate Daily History, 1999, 2005, 2007
  • -Index of Bills and Resolutions Introduced in the Senate and Assembly, 1983-2015 (with gaps in the 2000s)


Guide to the Fred Wright Collection on the Nevada Department of Wildlife History
Jessica Maddox
September 2018
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the University of Nevada, Reno. Special Collections Department Repository

Mathewson-IGT Knowledge Center
1664 N. Virginia St.
Reno Nevada 89557-0322 USA
775-682-5724 (Fax)