Les Sweeney Papers

Identifier: NC1406

Scope and Contents

The Les Sweeney Papers contain materials related to Sweeney’s life and work for the Bureau of Land Management (BLM). Series 1 contains materials related to his personal life including biographical information and photographs from his time at UNR. Series 2 contains materials related to his work for BLM in wild horse management. These materials include wild horse files, publications, and newspaper clippings.


  • 1950-2021


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.

Biographical / Historical

Les Sweeney was born in 1935 and grew up on the Squaw Valley Ranch near Midas, Nevada. He attended the University of Nevada, Reno from 1954-1959 and graduated with a degree in Agricultural Economy, Ranch Management Specialty. He began his career with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) in Carson City soon after graduation in 1959. He worked on both range and watershed programs throughout the state of Nevada. Sweeney also work for the BLM in Alaska, Idaho, and Utah before returning to Reno in 1979 as the Branch Chief of Biological Resources. In 1988, Sweeney transferred to Elko, Nevada as the Area Manager of the Elko Resource Area. He served in that position until his retirement in 1990.

During his time working at the BLM in the 1980s, Sweeney served as the State Wild Horse Specialist overseeing a staff of 6-8 employees. Before his retirement, he also served as the Contracting Officer's representative for two major contracts. The first was for the horse holding facility contract for Lovelock, Nevada and the second was for the University of Minnesota research contract study on wild horse fertility that took place between 1985 and 1988.


1.41 Linear Feet (2 boxes)

Language of Materials



Les Sweeney (1935- ) worked for the Bureau of Land Management between 1959 and 1990. The Les Sweeney Papers are primary related to his work on wild horse and burro management in Nevada. Materials in this collection include correspondence, memos, reports, administrative documents, publications, newspaper clippings, and photographs.


Arranged into the following series: 1) Personal Materials; 2) Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Wild Horse Management

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Donated by Les Sweeney in June 2021.


Guide to the Les Sweeney Papers
Theresa Nielson and Ian McGlory
June 2021
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)